More thoughts on yesterday’s prompt…

I was thinking a lot about the last prompt.  I really don’t like the way I answered it.  I really don’t like the prompt itself.  And I think I know why.

Different?  DIFFERENT FROM WHOM?!  That’s the question that keeps pounding away in my brain.  Because I am different from so many people…but not unique.  I graduated with honours…and did nothing with my degree.  That’s unfortunate, but not really different (you know what they say about English majors…the same thing they say about philosophy majors).  I chose to stay at home with my son as opposed to going back to working $11/hour administrative jobs, but I don’t know how “different” that is.  I didn’t have a “career” to go back to.  Even my parenting choices -gentle discipline, attachment parenting, extended nursing- aren’t that “different.”  Different from the mainstream…but not different from EVERYONE.  See what I mean?  I’m different from most of the dancers in Halifax because I don’t teach or take dance technique classes…but I’m not the only person in the world who does this, thank goodness.

I don’t know why I have such a block about this prompt.  Maybe this is one I’ll have to come back to periodically during this month.  I seem to have ever-evolving opinions about it…


4 thoughts on “More thoughts on yesterday’s prompt…

  1. Celebrate! It takes courage to do things different from the mainstream. A friend said to me the other day something along the lines of…I don’t want to be remembered for my tidy house or even my career – but for being a great Mum and the best person I can be. Stay brave.

    • Thank you! I’m going to work on this. It’s a really good point.
      Part of what I kept running up against was the idea of “the mainstream” and thinking “sure, but EVERYONE in the mainstream is like me and wants to get out.” But I don’t know if that’s true…those are the stories I seek out and read because I can relate to them…but that’s not everyone is it?

  2. I actually have had the opposite problem. I’ve spent my whole life insisting that I was different from everyone else to the point that I would deny parts of myself that actually would be considered normal. I can’t really tell you when or why this changed for me, but within the last couple of years, I’ve started to accept that while I am different from societal norms in a lot of ways, there are parts of me that are pretty stereotypical as well, and to deny these parts is to deny part of who I am. And I’ve been less defensive, more comfortable and accepting of myself and other people because of this.

    As to the prompt, I think what they’re getting at is where do your talents lie? We so often discount things that come easily to us because we think “everyone can do this, it’s so easy!” Don’t discount your ability to create things, or even to feel the pull to create, and express yourself. The bulk of people in the world go their whole lives without it occuring to them that creation and expression is something to even be done, and when they close their eyes all they see is black. It’s hard to imagine because creative people tend to draw like minded people around them, so they get the idea that that is normal and anyone can do it, and it’s simply not true. Plus, your talents aren’t what make you different from everyone, it’s what you do with them that sets you appart. I mean, look at someone you really admire, someone who in your mind is one of a kind. Let’s take Neil Gaiman, for an example. Writing is his talent. Well, there are lots of writers, so that doesn’t make him different. It’s how he writes, the stories that he creates, and the quality of his work that set him appart and make him one of a kind. I hope this helps.

    PS-I apologize for the length of this comment, but the second paragraph occured to me as I was writing the first one.

    • Ooh! Thanks for the lovely big long comment! No apology needed! 🙂
      Here’s an interesting fact: if the prompt had asked “What makes you special?” or “what makes you unique” I would not have had NEARLY the problems I did with it. And I think that my difficulty with it says a LOT about my view of myself. Something I clearly need to work on: valuing my own talents and seeing them as something special and different and worth celebrating and pursuing. That really rings true.

      Here’s my promise: I promise to work on this. And when I’m ready I promise to write an entry that SHOUTS my “differences” from the rooftops LOUDLY and PROUDLY. Deal? 🙂

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