You don’t have to experience life the way you were told too…
I talk about this particular topic a lot. Partly because it is where I am in my journey, but also because it is such an important topic in general and believe there are many out there who can benefit from hearing this as well.
Be yourself! Gosh this is so vital to growing, healing, moving forward on your own journey. For years I have been stuck at this step. Unable to move my foot forward and embrace this concept. Are you the same way? Did it take you a long time to grasp the importance of being yourself, or did this come easy to you?
This is also where our characters are in the book, Imperfections. I find that it is easier to write the characters struggles and healing process when I, myself, am embracing the same concept. The characters are all learning, in their own way, how to embrace who they are. They are learning it is okay to love themselves, exactly the way they are, despite their pasts and their imperfections.
Before you can reach this step though, you have to let go of everything you thought you knew. No one can tell you how to live your life. No one can tell you what is acceptable and what is not. No one can tell you who to be.
For those of us who have been through traumatic childhoods (or any part of life really), it is hard to accept this new reality and move forward. It is hard to accept that we can change. That we are worth being loved and accepted just as we are. That we do not need to adapt to others’ point of view to be liked or accepted or have friends. We can have all that and more by being true to who we are.
We see this a lot with people coming out as gay, bi-sexual, trans-sexual, pan-sexual, etc. We see how so many were scared (and still are) because they will be disowned by their families and friends. They fail to be true to themselves because they live in fear; caught in limbo land. And it is sad. A person is a person no matter what. You love a person because of who they are, not because of who you want them to be. It sickens me that so many do not grasp this concept.
Acceptance. The world today seems stuck on the fact acceptance is only a valid term when it meets their own expectations of the reality they wish for. True acceptance happens when you stop judging and actually start accepting despite your differences, despite your imperfections.
Before the world can accept you, you have to start accepting yourself. You need to be ready for this change. Whether you are dealing with past traumas, sexuality, identity, mental health, or anything else, you yourself need to be ready to step out of the “closet” and embrace who you are. You need to be ready and willing to ignore everything you were told in the past on how to live your life. You have to be willing to let your own freak flags fly and be yourself despite what others may or may not say or do. It is scary as hell! But it is so worth it.
You can start to heal and you can start to be happy with who you are when you realize that others cannot and do not dictate your future and who you are. No one can tell you how to experience life but you!
A. G. Ballard