Sometimes I find the whole fitting in thing a little bit tricky to navigate.
I admire people who aren't afraid to stand out from the crowd through the way they dress, the way they speak or even their beliefs. I admire them ... but don't know if I could ever be like them.
It think as a general rule we all want to fit in somehow - at work, in a group of friends even in the school yard with all the other mums. We want to belong, I guess it's only natural. And so often we moderate what we say or what we wear so we blend more easily.... or at least I do.
I sit on the fence a lot as I don't want to offend anyone.
I avoid confrontation as I don't want to hurt anyone.
I wear clothes and my hair in a way that I like but are not outlandish or necessarily a true reflection of who I am because I don't want to draw attention to myself and look too different from everyone else.
If I'm totally honest with you, it's part of the reason I hide my scars because growing up I was always in plaster or limping and I felt different to everyone else and it wasn't a feeling I ever became comfortable with.
As a parent I worry about this kind of stuff for my own kids. I want them to be individuals, to have the confidence to speak their mind, dress how they want and follow their own unique paths and yet at the same time I don't want them to be too different from everyone else because I don't ever want them to suffer the pain of feeling like they don't belong.
Do you get where I am coming from?
Probably a place of fear I guess.
I can imagine it could possibly be a little easier as an adult to stand up and be different from the crowd... not easy, just a little less hard than it would be as a kid because well kids can be cruel and the school years can feel like they go on forever for a child that doesn't fit in.
So as a parent I end up contradicting myself in the most ridiculous of ways.
I encourage my kids to stand up for themselves and for others and to speak up for what they believe in and yet in the same breathe I encourage them to keep the peace and go with the flow to avoid any unnecessary drama.
I tell them to walk their own path and not follow the crowd and yet I buy them the labels and the latest gadgets their friends have because I hate the thought of them feeling like they don't fit in.
I tell them to be a friend to everyone but expect them to understand that not everyone is going to want to be friends with them and that is OK.
When I see a child that wears his or her individuality loud and proud I stand up and cheer loudly for them. I fist pump the air with the most stoked enthusiasm ... but it is easy to do that because I am not the mother of that child who has to worry about whether their child is happy, being treated kindly and feels like they belong.
I want my children to be as different as they choose to be, but I don't want them to have to pay a price for that.
Wow, a little deep for a Friday evening I know and it's a tricky one don't you think - to be as individual as you want to be and yet feel like you fit in at the same time?
Do you think you can do both?
Do you ever worry about fitting in or your kids fitting it?
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