We are all different


In the course of the past years, in conversations with my oldest friends and sister, my life stories have often been met with reactions like “Well, of course, it’s you: you do things differently”, or “I’m not surprised, you’ve always done things differently” …

Statements like that always bring up mixed feelings. On one hand, they make my heart glow because I finally feel accepted as I am, with no one trying to change me or trying to change the way I do things. They’re accepting me just as I am. And that feels like victory to the life-long battle to finally be accepted as I am.

But with that feeling also comes the confirmation that I am indeed different. And this feels like failure. A big defeat to the other life-long battle of fitting in and being seen as normal. But most of all, it’s scary. Society has rules for “normal” people. Like instruction manuals for how normal people should do things. How they should look, what they should eat, say, do, but there’s nothing for those who are different. What rules should they follow? What guidelines should they live by? What instruction manual should they download?

It’s all a big unknown, finding things out by yourself. And it often comes with a bonus: feeling alone as you try to figure things out, venturing out in the uniqueness of your life, because nobody’s done that, nobody’s been you before, and nobody knows how to do it. It’s frickin scary.

But recently, I’ve been reading things, I’ve been watching videos, listening to podcasts, and more and more people are speaking up, and sharing what it means to be different. And even though we might all be different in a different way, somehow there is one truth that unites us, and that truth is that we are living our truth. We are trying to live a life that is true to our selves, we’re trying to be faithful to our selves, and as more stories are being shared, guidelines starting to appear.

I know what it’s like to want to feel normal. I know what it’s like to want to fit in. Everything would be so much simpler. But deep down you know you could never be normal, because you are different. And there’s nothing wrong with that. To paraphrase Orcar Wilde, we are ALL different. Some of us just are more different than others. And that’s why I’m writing this. I want you to know, that you are not alone. You can do this. You don’t have to be somebody else to be happy. You can be yourself, whatever that means. It’s okay. I am here to let you know that.

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