To strike out on one’s own is a scary thing. It can be risky and terrifying even for the most confident of souls. It’s a choice for some, and for others it’s simply the only option. Whatever the case may be, I think it deserves admiration. Just a simple recognition that it takes bravery and courage and both of those things do not come without fear, in fact its on the contrary. To be scared of something, but to do it anyway is what courage and bravery mean to me.
I think in this crazy world we live in, we don’t give ourselves or others enough credit. I don’t know a single person who doesn’t know what stress feels like. So many of us are walking around, going about our days in the shuffle and sometimes it’s hard not to feel so scared and alone and small.
I’ve always been a highly sensitive person, and I pick up on others emotions so vividly at times it can be overwhelming. I use to think that this was something to overcome, being “too sensitive”. I now know that others too feel as deeply as I do, more than you’d expect, and even those you may least suspect have this intuitive sensitive nature. Sensitive is a bit of a broken word, as its usually found to be synonymous with weak or the lesser.
I am just thankful that I can now accept this about myself, and even see the beauty that has come from it. I sometimes sob at a heartfelt movie, or a song, or even a commercial, and it has taken me a long time to understand that I am so lucky to be moved so deeply. I know this trait has given me incredible empathy for others, and the ability to truly listen without judgment. I also think that it’s what makes me creative, in my work as a hairstylist and with my writing I am able to channel all that I feel into something that means something to me. But my favorite quality I know it has blessed me with is kindness, and that is the one I am the most grateful for.
Kindness is real life magic, and it has always come second nature to me. At times in my life I have been told that I am too nice or naive and this may have been true. So at other times I have repressed my kindness, and even seemed cold hearted in the form of self protection. But now that I have a firm grasp of who I am and who I want to be I know that being kind doesn’t mean being a door mat, and it should never have to cost you your own personal happiness, or cost you anything at all, for that matter.
When I hear the word kind, I think of the feeling you get when a stranger smiles at you and uncontrollably you smile an even bigger grin back. An innocent exchange, not costing either of you anything but making you the sort of happy that feels so easy in its purity. I like the idea of leaving things a little better than how you found it, especially people. Everyone is fighting their own battles in their own lives, some worse off than you, but its no competition. The person in front of you in line may be going through the exact same traumas as you and you will never know.
Buddy wakefield says it best when he says
“there is not enough time for us to compare hardships, or the gold medals you and I won in decathlons of dysfunction…forgiveness is the release of all hope for a better past…forgiveness is for anyone who needs safe passage through our minds”.
To anyone out there struggling, I wish I could tell you to your face that you are enough. It gets overwhelming sometimes knowing that I’m only one person, and that I can’t help everyone. But I know that no matter my mood, my circumstances, my day I’ve had, those will all vary, and throughout my day I interact with dozens of people, the very least I can do is be kind. Don’t overthink it, simple is always better. Small good intentions go a long way. Hold the door, say thank you, smile, nod.
I love music, not so much a specific type over another but more so songs with lyrics that make me feel something. I have always had a soft spot for country, and I credit my dad for that. I got to watch the Country Music Awards online the day after they aired thanks to my husband finding me the links and it too brought me to tears. It was the 50 year anniversary, and because of that they did tributes to all the past winners and influencers that have made music, not only country, but other genres, what it is today. I loved it for many reasons, the history, hearing old classics and seeing the amazing legends, and it also made me feel as though I had a little piece of home with me, when I felt so far away.
I like being moved by beautiful things that seem to speak to my soul. When you can’t really find the words to describe how you’re feeling, sometimes you find it in a song or a book, a poem or a movie and it understands you. Just remember that others out there feel the same way you do. You can take comfort in that. And though you may never meet or exchange a word, you may smile at them one day and for a second you will both stop feeling all alone. Kindness doesn’t cost a thing, but it can and does change the world.
Here is a country song that seems most appropriate for this post.
p.s. for anyone who read ‘feeling to deeply’ or being ‘too sensitive’ above and it struck a chord with you, I highly recommend the book ‘The Highly Sensitive Person’ by Elaine Aron.