It's heart-wrenching to feel like you're not enough. And it's not the same as feeling invalidated. My sense of "lacking" has nothing to do with how others view me. It's how I view myself. I just feel "not enough".
Today was unexpected. It started out with me feeling good but somehow quickly turned into me feeling quite the opposite. This sort of melancholic cloud hung over me all day. Oddly enough, I think it had to do with makeup. See, I don't wear makeup often. Once, maybe twice a week, on a good (?) week. Usually, I kind of get excited about putting makeup on.
So, I purchased some new, highly-recommended makeup for myself. Today was the first day I wore it. Basically, I felt ridiculous and old after putting it on. Mind you, this had nothing to do with the makeup; rather, how, I feel about myself. I don't wear makeup very often, so I guess I felt ridiculous because I actually had foundation AND concealer on. I think I felt old because I was wearing both of those. It wasn't the old = more mature. It was old = I'm aging and tired and look old. I kind of always feel silly with makeup since applying it is not intuitive to me. I seriously use pictures and detailed instructions on how to apply it. Anyway, because these thoughts quickly snowball for me, this turned into me judging how I looked in my clothing and what I had done with my hair. Side note: lately, I'm having an identity crisis. I don't like how my hair looks, how my skin looks, or how my clothing looks on me. Suddenly, I feel lost in myself. (Feel free to talk among yourselves and explain this one to me.)
Back to the makeup. A colleague noticed said makeup and complimented me. My brain took that compliment and said, "Look how obvious it is that you're wearing makeup. You are wearing too much." And, "Wow! You clearly look so much better with makeup that it's obvious you're wearing it.". These are some of the stories I like to tell myself.
By mid-morning, I was having this feeling of wanting to cry but not actually crying. It's hard to explain. I felt sad and, yet, there weren't any tears. I couldn't find anything nice to say/think about myself. I wanted nothing more than to take the makeup off, put my hair into a top knot, throw on a t-shirt and sweatpants, and crawl into bed. Mostly, I just wanted the makeup off. Is that weird?
When something like this happens I just want to be able to pinpoint a trigger. Yes, I wore makeup, but I wear makeup other times and don't have this sort of visceral reaction. I kind of wonder (don't laugh) if the "flawless in 5" promise made me anxious. I certainly didn't feel like I looked flawless.
For some reason, I sort of floated around today feeling not myself. The whole thing has me feeling alexithymic. When I got home, I immediately cleaned off my makeup and changed clothes. I also felt better. I guess I felt more like myself.