Yesterday, my sweet family and I celebrated my little brother turning 22. I thought I was 22? I’m confused and in a bit of denial. Fifteen years ago yesterday, my family and I moved from Redmond, Washington to Huntington Beach, California.
“Some skater girl told me my shoes were lame….” My brother exclaimed. My siblings and I laughed about being outcasts on the first day of school. Having no idea how “stylish” OC kids were, we were in for a rude awakening.
I was in 6th grade and walked home alone (in my Payless shoes) after the first day. I told my mom I NEEDED to have Jack Purcell shoes because EVERY SINGLE KID was wearing them but ME!
O, how I wish I would have rocked my Keds with confidence. Fitting in. A 5’7″ 11-year old with a flat chest and hairy legs. I learned the brutality of kids very quickly. I (still) remember the exact words of a poem a little boy wrote about me.
Roses are red, violets are black.
Why is your chest as flat as your back?? Love, Phil.
No joke. This is real. He wrote this down on college-ruled paper and handed it to me in class! The nerve!
Why did I have to look like every one else to be loved, accepted, and “popular”? Is life really about having the right shoes?
Having a daughter of my own, I long to show her to stand her ground. To express herself and stand up for who she is. O, how I desire for her to celebrate uniqueness.
To consider freckles beautiful and every body shape and size, perfect.
To see people for their good and celebrate them.
To go against the grain when needed.
To accept and love those who don’t “fit in.”
To speak positive of others.
To stand up for what she believes in.
Part of me wants to keep her safe in my arms and never let her go. Since this is not an option (for much longer anyway)..I can show her.
The same stuff is going on in adulthood. The “shoes” still matter to some, but now it’s the whole gammet..cars, family, husband, job, age, beauty, weight, kids.
It’s my job to show Reese…Mom loves those who maybe don’t deserve to be loved.
Mom invites people into her home that no one else does.
Mom doesn’t have to look a certain way to be loved.
Mom speaks positively to herself and others.
Mom doesn’t make fun of people.
Show, not tell. This is MY job. To teach her how to be nice and accept other people.
And when a boy writes you a mean poem in class, that it just might be okay to punch him in the face (hehe). But seriously.
My challenge for you today is to notice those who are outcasts and figure out how you can love them.
Stay tuned! A new blog logo is in the making and I am SO excited to share it with you!