I am not the same as you

One of many things I’ve learnt in my long life on this earth plane is that we are all different. We all see the world from our own world view. Through our own coloured glasses.

I am not the same as you.

‘My way is the only way’ is the rule that I grew up with, firstly from my mother then followed by the teachers at school. I’m sure many of you can relate.

EVERY. SINGLE. THING. that has happened to me in my life has had an impact on me.

The parents I have, the families that they had, the things that my parents experienced in their lives. The society and environment they were brought up in, and on and on … ad infinitum.

My mother was nursing in London during the Second World War, my father was in the airforce fixing planes in Burma. Every single thing that happened in their lives has impacted on me. And then on my children. You get my drift!

I am not the same as you

I have four children.

I was most definitely not the same mother for my fourth child as I was for the first. I’d had more birthdays, for one thing. I’d had more life experience. I knew the things that were important to take a stand on and what to let go of. I knew that the world wouldn’t end if the baby didn’t get his nap at the same time every day…

I like my husband. I like food that my husband doesn’t like. I like colours that he doesn’t like. I read books that he doesn’t like. I like movies that he doesn’t like. (Yet I love him and we have a great life together!)

I am vegetarian and no-one in my family is. There are some foods that my body doesn’t like. We have family members who have allergies to certain foods…

I am not the same as you  (sounds like something from Dr Seuss, my favourite philosopher)

I used to work in a special school. When I told people where I worked they would tell me I must have some special qualities to be able to work with these children. I must have a lot of patience (I didn’t!)

When I was with the kids at work I would see the similarities between them and my children. I would see the behaviours they had in common. I could see all the ways that they were the same as my children – they liked to play, to laugh, to learn new things, to experience new things, to have fun, to have people who loved them in their lives. In fact, they were just like kids all over the world.

At work I was drawn to the children that other staff members found challenging. It wasn’t that I liked them because other people didn’t. I just liked them. I could see what it was that they needed. I could see that they needed their self-esteem boosted not pulled down. Just like all of us they needed to be praised for what they did well, not constantly have their short fallings noted.

We are all different. We all have foibles. We all have behaviours that others find irritating, annoying, incomprehensible. We all do things differently to other people.

When I went to school, in the middle of the last century, the idea was to make all children the same. To make everyone fit into a box. All the square pegs had to fit into the round hole. Anyone who didn’t fit into that mould was ridiculed, humiliated to make us conform. I realised then that I was not the same as you.

I hope that the world has changed since then. I hope that we have started to realize that people who don’t ‘fit the mould’ are the ones that have had a huge positive impact on the world. How boring would the world be if we were all the same. We would have a world full of plumbers. There would be no-one to build our houses, no architects, no town planners, no-one to take our garbage away, we’d just have plumbers ….

(I want to say here that I mean no disrespect to plumbers, I have good friends who are plumbers and I certainly wouldn’t want a world without them. I just hope they helped me to make my point)

If we only had plumbers then who would write our music, who would write our books, who would teach our children…

The most brilliant people in the world have always been called eccentric, labelled different, and people looked down their noses at them. But oh how boring would our lives be without what these geniuses have created for the world. How they have coloured our world, enriched it.

I am not the same as you

and not only is that OK, it’s fantastic!

 

I say it’s time to celebrate our differences!

When we take the time to look, we can see that spark that in each of us is the same ….

Look next time and see that the essence of them, their soul, is just like yours. That is the part that is the same.

And when we can all do that then ~ the world will truly be a beautiful place!!

This quote, often credited to Albert Einstein, appeals to me deeply on a heart level:

 Everyone is a genius.
But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree,
it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.