This one is for the Misfits

...The difference between being unique and strange is a thin line we seem to walk daily.

Growing up, did you view standing out from the crowd as a blessing or a curse?

I remember enjoying days engaging in public speaking or performing instrumentals. I also remember days of intense isolation due to my inability to connect with those in my immediate surroundings, especially within my age bracket. There’s something about the socialization process within schools that seem to exaggerate the benefit of fitting in. I suspect this is where a lot of us begin to either lose ourselves, or truly begin the process of self-discovery. 

The word which seemed to define this part of my existence could best be summarized as “Misfit”. I rode the highs of this blessing and the lows of this curse. Ultimately, I still look back at that girl and feel proud that she didn’t give up on being herself. 

While my classmates rattled off lyrics to the latest music, I couldn’t understand a word from the songs. While they daydreamed over the hottest tv stars, I daydreamed about being Richard Branson’s mentee. To those looking in, it might have appeared I was trying to ‘grow up’ before my time. But I suppose there will always be judgemental folks.

I was very fortunate however to have parents who recognized my needs and allowed the environment to foster my growth instead of trying to control and hamper it. I can’t imagine the particular amount of pressure my mother had to undergo in protecting her decisions with my company (I got along better with teachers and older kids) but as cheesy and cliché as this might be to say – “Be who you are and say how you feel because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind!” – Dr. Seuss

“By being true to myself, the people that mattered ultimately found me.
And the most beautiful part- They’re here to this day. 
You see,
None of us are perfect; far from it actually.
But I believe there is grace which follows the genuine spirit with honest intention.”

It’s the only explanation I have for all the friendships I’ve developed throughout the years. There’re also big believers in forgiveness! Each of these people have contributed to my growth in insurmountable ways (continuously challenging me, supporting, and inspiring me) ; and the only way they were able to fall into my life was by involving myself in things I cared about; not what I was expected to care about. 

Self-direction is the ability to do things in line with your interests and not the world’s. If we try to blend, reality has a way of catching up and perhaps that’s why disenchantment is so abundant in our time. But that’s the good news as well isn’t it? Feeling disenchanted with your present is the arrow on your compass- it’s whether you decide to march in your heart’s direction which will make the difference. And that’s the thing about the heart – it’s never too late to come home to it. 

If you don’t know where to start, in another post I mentioned the importance of trying new things  and challenging yourself. With a world bent on innovation, the capacity to reimagine with the ability of a child is an asset. You’ll eventually find your unique trend of what floats your boat.



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