For decades, I didn’t like my name. True story. I didn’t like that it was only 3 letters. I didn’t like that I never saw it on a key chain in a souvenir shop. I didn’t like that so many jokes were made about it (Tai, tie your shoe; Bow-tie; Tae-Bo). I didn’t like that I had never heard it before.
I just didn’t like my name.
At one point in my life when I was a child, I even told my grandma, that when I became an adult I was going to change it (I never did lol). However, as a kid I never thought of my name as being unique. I just saw it as being different from everybody else.
Not until I got to high school, did I begin to realize that my name was unique.
So sitting here and reflecting, I wonder, when did we start appreciating our own uniqueness?
Some of us appreciate how unique we are from the time we are young. Some of us appreciate it when we get older.
I, personally, didn’t start appreciating how unique I was until I became a mom. The feeling and knowing that a life that you created is looking to you for everything made me realize that 1.) it was okay for me to be myself and 2.) I want to show my children that it was okay for them to be themselves. To this day, I encourage that sentiment with them all the time.
Slowly but surely, I began to realize that the right people will like and love me for me. That the connections I establish with the right people won’t fade or break because they see me for who I am and I them.
And with experiencing all the lessons that Life had to offer (motherhood, friendships that formed and friendships that broke, relationships, family or romantic, that didn’t last, new career, home, etc.) did I begin to TRULY feel that my uniqueness was something that couldn’t be replicated.
We weren’t all made the same. Don’t get me wrong, we definitely have things in common with people; same morals, values, thought processes, etc. But we are still different.
I am reminded of the Dr. Seuss quote: Why fit in when you were born to stand out?
He points it out clearly to humanity, to embrace who you are. To appreciate the unique being that you were created to be. This planet is vast with people. Imagine if EVERYONE was the same. Life would be boring and there would be no room for learning experiences and growth. And that’s the most important part of Life.
Discovering who you are is a process that both hurts and rewards.
Appreciating and loving your uniqueness is the prize in the end.
I am a unique expression of the universal fabric of creation. -Jonathan Lockwood Huie