A close friend recently told me that she thought I was a SuperWoman.
I laughed. I told her that she was a SuperWoman. Guess what. She laughed, too.
We can all look at the highlights of other women’s lives and think that they are SuperWomen. It’s easy compare what we KNOW about our imperfect lives to what we SEE on the surface of another’s life. But our comparisons are so inaccurate. It’s like comparing apples to bananas. Or comparing a raw, unedited image of a model to a retouched image of the same model in a magazine. Even the model doesn’t resemble her own appearance in the picture.
Because I live with myself, I KNOW that I struggle.
I struggle with self-doubt, disorganization, cluttered closets, too-little-faith, and a lack of discipline in spending time with God. Not to mention the times I over-schedule and force my children to pay the consequences. Or how about when I gain confidence and boldness, only to over-extend myself and revert to doubt and fear. No one else sees when I cry because I can’t keep up with the kids’ health issues or even my own. I don’t often share the fear I feel every time I write or speak something that God has shown me. The doubt threatens to paralyze me: Did God really say that? Am I interpreting it correctly? What if someone finds an error?
When I see another woman, I can’t always see the private pain.
That mom who looked so “with it” that I was intimidated by her? She is grieving a terrible loss. What I mistook for confidence was actually sadness. The calm, organized woman? She suffers from migraines. That mom who looks so happy and outgoing? She is tormented by terrible memories. Then there is the mom who always looks like she is ready for a photoshoot. She suffers from anxiety. And what about the woman who drains you with her neediness? She just needs a friend who will accept her and bring her into a wider circle of friends.
Rather than judging women by their appearances, we should remember that we are ALL human. We may be more “put together” in one area than someone else is, but we all have struggles and weaknesses. We naturally put our best foot forward and hide the less-than-stellar parts.
Let’s open our eyes to each other.
Take time to share stories over coffee. Get past appearances and find what struggles we have in common. There is no such thing as a SuperWoman. We all struggle differently together. Thankfully, we have a God who loves each of us uniquely in spite of our many failings and insecurities.
Let’s love each other in spite of our masks and our hidden doubts.
We must stop judging because someone else’s challenges are different from ours. When we remember how many of our own sins have received God’s forgiveness, it is easier to give grace to others. Our own failures should help keep us humble. Our successes can enable us to encourage others when all they see is struggle.
Let’s remember that not all burdens are visible.
Even the most “with-it” of women have their hidden torments and secret sins. We all need grace from both God and each other. When we judge too quickly, we eliminate potential friendships.
In a nutshell, let’s love each other as God loves us…and let the SuperWoman myth fade into oblivion.
Join me and other non-SuperWomen in this journey of life.