I am Enough! We are all enough, because we are unique and special. No two people are exactly the same. Each one of us is irreplaceable and exceptionally rare in a species where no two have the same finger prints – not even twins I’m told.
Watching an episode of one of my favourite shows, The Long Island Medium in which her teenage daughter was constantly ‘body shamed’ by her peers reminded me of a prior conversation with a teenager a few years ago. This young girl was feeling hurt due to having experienced the same treatment from her very close friends at school. This encounter emphasized that it is important to teach our youth, especially the girls, who are so critical of themselves and other girls who they feel do not measure up to the image of what beauty is supposed to look like. e.g. The Air Brushed Fantasy!
Beauty comes in many shapes and sizes. Criticizing someone for their shape, weight or dress style is very hurtful. Many have no filters and can be extremely cruel in their criticism of others, quite often to their friends. What they must be taught in school and at home is that no two people are made exactly the same. Humans come in all shapes, sizes and yes colours as well! And that is where the beauty of diversity is so pronounced and special. They must be taught that EVERYONE is very special in their uniqueness and it is this difference that makes everyone so special. I feel if they were taught to embrace the diversity in others from a very young age, we would have a far kinder world.
This brings me to another very important fact. Many teenage girls are very hard on themselves. They want to measure up to what their friend’s idea of perfection is. The Air Brushed Fantasy paraded on the television daily. Imagine being with a healthy, beautiful 14 year old with a lovely unblemished complexion, long vibrant dark hair framing her face constantly saying self-consciously, “I’m so fat”. Yes. I had that experience and it shocked me. There was this lovely young girl picking at her food because she somehow got it planted in the neuro pathways of her brain that she is fat. No amount of my telling her she is perfect in every way seemed to reach that part of her brain to boost her self-esteem. I realized it was no use trying, because at that age ones friend’s always knows best. (She is 18 and definitely her own person now).
Social Media and its tentacles reaching far and wide into everyone’s lives have brought with it the era we now define as ‘body shaming’. Teenagers have to put up with their so called “friends” shaming them without filters even on Face Book. That can be quite hurtful and damaging to their fragile young egos. Sadly, there will always be one in every group who takes on the role of the fashion and body shaming Deva. A tactic used to deflect from their personal insecurity. That is why It is so important to teach our youth not to be critical of others as well as themselves.
Just because that “look” is what one individual finds they need to define who they are, is no reason to project it on to someone else. Unfortunately, it is not just among the younger generation. I had the rude awakening myself when one of my friends kept hinting that she wants to “jazz up my look”. Clothes, hair the lot – a make-over! Bless her heart! I did not realize that once widowed, one needs to be jazzed up for the “out there look”. Whatever that is! There is no way I am going to start dressing like a 20 year old because someone else does. I am uniquely me. I have no intention of having my hair styled falling in my face to please someone else. My response is always with a smile and a chuckle, ‘thanks, but no thanks’.
No doubt, if I were a preteen or teenager that would have been a blow to my ego, thinking “what is wrong with my hair”? Today, I see it for what it is, someone trying to fit me into their preconceived box, while taking away my uniqueness. It is important we all be uniquely who we are, and not try to imitate another or try to make someone into something they are not. Let us all celebrate each other’s uniqueness because we are all very special.
I am passionate that we must help the younger generation build confidence in their uniqueness in order to deflect any rude ‘body shaming’ remarks directed at them. As adults we must instill in them a sense of self love and self- respect. Admiration that they are Special! Everyone is Special! Everyone is unique! We are all Enough!
Here are some verses from I’m Special. I came across I’m Special many years ago and have loved sharing it in workshops and with clients.
I’m Special. In all the world there is nobody like me. Since the beginning of time, there has never been another person like me. Nobody has my smile, my eyes, my nose or my voice.
I’m Special. I’m the only one in all creation who has my set of abilities. Oh, there will always be somebody who is better at one of the things I’m good at, but no one in the Universe can reach the quality of my combination of talents, ideas, abilities and feelings.
I’m a Symphony. Through all of eternity no one will look, talk, walk, think or be like me.
I’m Special. I’m Rare. In rarity there is great value. Because of my great rare value, I need not attempt to copy or imitate another. I need not feel inferior to anyone because I am unique. I am Rare and I am Special.
May you always walk gently in sandals of Love.