If you take a classroom full of children, each of them will learn at different paces. Some will be better at math, some better at reading. Some will be good at making friends, some will be good at creating science experiments. Some will be good at everything, while others will excel at only a couple of things while they struggle with the rest. None of them are judged, none of them are looked down upon. Each teacher knows this and does their best to incorporate all the learning styles to help and encourage their students to feel proud of what they accomplish. This doesn’t stop in the classroom. It continues on throughout adulthood.
I was the oldest of three and the only girl. I loved making friends and meeting new people, but when I would first encounter a stranger I was very skeptical. I would study each person to make sure they were someone I could open up to. I eventually always did. When I started kindergarten, I was a bit overwhelmed, and yes, I was one of those kids who cried when her mommy left. Not for long though. As soon as I felt comfortable, I would participate and play with friends and come home having the best day ever! At the end of the school year I was in my first play. It was The Ugly Duckling, and I played the ugly duckling who turned into a beautiful swan. My teacher and mother thought that was very symbolic for me and how at first I was shy and then grew into this child who was singing a solo at the end of the school year in front of everyone to see.
This has been symbolic to my own personal journey of healing and coming into my own. Finding my own truth. It has not been pretty. I hear coming into your power rarely is. I have cried the ugly cry while gripping my chest in the shower, feeling like my heart was going to pound right out of it, and asking God, “Why?” I have screamed at the top of my lungs into pillows until I lost my voice, drank until I puked, and been awful and ugly to people around me because they didn’t understand. I accepted their criticisms and judgements and allowed their words to cause me wounds that are so deep I forgot they even existed. I have begged for forgiveness and have given the same. I have hit a place in my life that is so low, I couldn’t even see rock bottom, it was unrelenting darkness- pitch black. But somehow I found a way. I am so thankful for those who stood beside me. The ones who loved me unconditionally. The ones who held me when I fell apart. The ones who believed, and continue to believe in me every step, leap and bound of the way. I am open and willing to allow others to come into my life to bless me with their stories of courage and success and bless me with love, light and support. I am so thankful to say that I am healing, not healed completely, but I have worked extremely hard to get to where I am at. Every single step I took happened because I was ready to face the pain, and feel it all the way down. I was able to love it, heal it and be grateful for what this pain has given me. I am now prepared to give because of it. I have learned that allowing wounds to surface has been the only way to truly come into my strength, into my power, into my truth. The surfacing of wounds continues to happen to me. Even as recent as yesterday. The internal wound that I thought was healed had an infection that needed to be lanced. It was filled with the pus of raw emotions that had never been addressed. I suffered, again, tears streamed down my face. It was pure agony and I wanted to flee from myself, however I stayed and let it drain. The bandage is no longer even necessary. I find myself tender today, still a bit sensitive in my heart, but I am so thankful that now this wound is now able to heal properly and close. This healing is my reality and healing, not just myself, but others, has become my gift.
Each one of us is unique. Each one of us have come from different backgrounds and have had different trials. Every single one of us have different hurdles we need to jump over and different mountains we are forced to climb. I honor those journeys and trust each individual path is exactly what it should be. The acceptance of this is pure and it comes without judgement. I was told once by a woman who I deeply admire, that there truly is no “straight and narrow” path that we must follow. We all have different paths that get us to where we need to be. How wonderful is it that we are not all the same, that we all still are like that child we once were and have a unique learning style. If we are open and willing, vulnerable and teachable we can learn from each other. If we are brave enough to share our successes AND our failures we will give each other hope. Look into the mirror and see what you’ve truly become and give credit to the very personal journey that turned you from an ugly duckling into a beautiful swan that now is ready to fly.