As much as we all want to “fit in” with the people around us, we also want to “stand out”. We want to be our own person and maybe even gain that fifteen minutes of fame someday. We are who we are in our own right. People should value us because of who we are, because of our unique story in this world. Much of our personal success comes from the challenges we overcome. It is our struggles that quite often make us who we are – unique human beings.
I never realized how grateful I was for the challenges in my life until I was faced with some that knocked me down to the ground and left me fighting my way back up. They made me different. They made me special. They made me smarter and more proud of myself and my capabilities.
I am grateful I have the opportunity to help those who may face similar challenges but have different circumstances. I met a young girl the other day who has never grown hair on her head. She was upset because kids in her class were making fun of her and she was embarrassed by her appearance. I suggested to her that maybe they wished they could be as courageous as she was and the only way they could think to react to their inadequacy was to make fun of her. As we talked, she let me paint a big smiley face on her head. She decided that if kids were going to talk about her, she was going to give them something fun to talk about and maybe open the lines of communication between her and her classmates.
I’m grateful for understanding firsthand the challenges of living without hair on my head. It was my own adversity that allowed me to help this young girl come to a better understanding of how others may react out of ignorance or fear of the unknown.
Today my gratitude shout out goes to my life’s challenges. To those moments that have taught me to be my own person. Those challenges that leave me smarter, more courageous and more compassionate. For those struggles that have knocked me down and allowed me the opportunity to rise higher and stronger than I ever have been, I am most grateful!