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Life Story

Life Story

I couldn’t mess up. What would people say? I figured God must be this way too. I just needed to try harder. But it wasn’t enough. I was not enough. I judged everything I thought, said, or did harshly, getting mad at myself and obsessing over the smallest details.

In my teen years, I became obsessed with soap operas, teen versions of romance novels, and pro-feminist, teen magazines. It was entertainment – my escape. I absorbed everything I was reading and seeing – not knowing that I was actually becoming a very angry person.

In college, I wanted to get away from performing, but I was drawn to it again. I was still striving and still trying to prove myself.

I married at age 20. We had our ups and downs, just like any marriage. We had happy moments, but for me, that’s all they were: Moments. I just couldn’t seem to ever get myself to a happy place and stay there for an extended period of time. Our conversations centered on the weather, work, school, TV shows, music, other people. We were more like roommates.

I was frustrated, and my striving continued in graduate school. Most days, I worked from the time I woke up to the time I went to bed. I graduated with my master’s, and I was very close to finishing my PhD. I had a brilliant career ahead of me. Still, I was empty. I desperately wanted more out of life, but my career was the only thing I could control; it gave me my worth. If I could just finish the PhD, then that would be as high as I could go. I would be happy. So I held on, even though I was irritable, critical, sarcastic, and depressed on the inside.

When I felt most alone, I would hide in my room and write. As I put my thoughts and feelings on paper as best I could, my heart was free – even for a few moments.

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Daphne Tarango is a participant in affiliate programs with Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, DaySpring, Church Source, Hazelden, Christian Strong (via Conversant and ShareASale). These advertising services are designed to provide a means for sites like to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to said merchants. Some images and articles may contain links to products on merchant sites. Should you choose to make purchases through those links, please understand that I will receive a small commission. Please do not feel like you need to use these links to make any purchases. The links are only for your convenience. Thank you.