Something just hit me. Do we need a reason? Do I feel good about myself because I lost 20 pounds, or because I am having a good hair day? Those things are transitory, and the thrill is lost within a short space of time. Does my feeling good about myself come down to such detritus, and if so, why? There has to be more; a solid foundation for self-esteem to flourish. I feel good about myself today because a friend (a very devoted friend), called out that she loved me from her car. I called back my adoration, and it left me with a smile. I walked two little girls into school, and enjoyed hearing their banter and giggles. I feel good about myself today because I actually remembered to feed myself breakfast, and felt I was worth the effort of preparing a juice. I feel good about myself because I cleared the calendar and have a day in the office to get paperwork completed so I don’t feel overwhelmed. I always feel good about myself when I look to the future and make preparations. There is nothing like laying your head on your pillow at night, knowing you have taken steps to prepare the road ahead. I have life insurance so my child is provided for, I have a budget for next week. I have my social plans on the calendar. These things make me feel good. I feel good that I caught myself this morning. I was watching the morning news when the Oscar Pistorius verdict flashed onto the screen. Not guilty… My breath caught in my chest, and a tightness gripped my lungs. Tears sprang in my eyes. I was overwhelmed with emotion, for Reeva’s family. I caught sight of the hurt and angry women’s right’s advocates gathered outside the courthouse. Some of these women had endured horrors of their own. One glimpse into their faces was all it took. “I got you,” I assured myself. I listened to Sia, and sat for a while, gathered my thoughts and concentrated on my breathing. I feel good about myself because I know what my triggers are. I know how to soothe the pain that bubbles up, and I know how to temper it. I refuse to turn away and be uninformed because of it, so I have had to devise tools to cope. The reasons I feel good about myself today have nothing to do with appearance. In fact, I am wearing mismatched socks (the only ones I could find), a men’s jacket found in an op-shop and old boots. The reason I feel good about myself is that I am hearing what I need, and providing it. Love, security, peace of mind, comfort.