Most of us learn on our first day of school that it’s not always good to stand out — to be seen as different. We quickly learn that the oddballs are shunned and the rule breakers often get punished
So do everything we can to blend in, to keep ourselves from being separated from the herd and being called out as an individual.
This is ironic because before we went to school most of us celebrated our individuality. We were invincible superheroes and undiscovered princesses. We were musicians, writers, and artists who didn’t understand that we would have to eventually fall in line. We were ignorant, naive, and happy.
There comes a time, however, when we no longer care.
Maybe we become the crazy old cat lady in the big purple hat, or maybe we’re the old guy in the park yelling at the geese with our pants hiked up to our armpits. Maybe we are the musician or the writer who learns to ignore those people who have told them to give up their foolish dreams. Maybe we are the painter who stays up long after the rest of the family has gone to bed, or the photographer who continues to get up an hour before dawn in order to capture that perfect sunrise.
This battle to be yourself in a world that is doing it’s best to make you exactly like everybody else is one that never ends, but we must continue to fight…
“To be nobody but yourself in a world which is doing its best, night and day,
to make you everybody else means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight;
and never stop fighting.” ~e. e. cummings