Definitions of pride:
- a feeling of self-respect and personal worth
- satisfaction with your (or another’s) achievements
- the trait of being spurred on by a dislike of falling below your standards
- unreasonable and inordinate self-esteem
The first two definitions are positive ones. I’m proud of my children. I’m proud of my accomplishments and my writing, something I didn’t used to have. There is much I am proud of in this respect—and this is a positive thing—a strength. The last definition is not something I have an issue with, since my self-esteem is not my strongest trait.
That third definition probably comes the closest to what pride means to me when I think of the word, and it’s the one that is probably my biggest weakness.
Afraid to fall below my own standards I have set for myself or the perceived standards another has set for me. Not allowing myself to show emotion that I feel for fear it will make me appear weak, and weak is something I do not want to be. Yet, knowing also that there is strength in being weak, and being able to admit that.
“They say pride comes before a fall.” Boy, isn’t that the truth. That’s really it for me. My pride doesn’t allow me to say, “I need.” My pride doesn’t allow me say, “I hurt.” My pride doesn’t allow me to say, “I’m wrong.”
And I’ve paid for that pride over the years… holding on to the anger and the bitterness and the fear and the pride and shoving it all inside of me and not sharing the real parts of me to anyone, because that emotion is weakness.
That kind of Pride…the kind of pride that keeps you isolated and always disappointing yourself—and by default those around you.
The kind of pride that says, “I’ll be damned if I will let you see you have hurt me. I’ll be damned if I will let you see you are stronger than me. I’ll be damned if I will let you see I failed.” But you did hurt me. You were strong. I did fail. It happens, but I wouldn’t ever admit that to you or myself…. esoterically speaking, that is.
That’s the kind of pride I must learn to deal with and refrain from. That’s the kind of pride that damages me. That is the kind of pride that is my greatest weakness.
Self preservation made me feel pride was necessary. In the end, it has done more damage to me than if I had not tried to protect myself through pride.
I am human. I forgive myself. I release myself from the anger that pride has caused me. I release myself from the pride.
“To hell with my pride.”
This was first written in 2006.