As I child I always felt invisible. I felt awkward, different, less than, and I always tried to blend in with my surroundings, I didn’t want to stand out. I just wanted to appear as normal, because I didn’t feel normal. I don’t know what I basing that on, what normal was, I just know that I didn’t feel I was. I hoped to just fade into the background when I was at school. I always had friends, but stayed within smaller groups, or one on one friendships over the bigger crowds. I just didn’t want a lot of eyes on me, asking questions.
I traveled through my childhood like that until high school, when I discovered the drama club, a place where I cold go hide, on the stage, and just be someone else. I didn’t mind being seen and heard in that place, because I got to be someone else there, and that seemed safe. I started to take those characters, those people I played out in life, I pretended to be who I thought you wanted to be, again, a way to be invisible in plain sight, because no one ever saw the real me, including myself. It wasn’t until I hit my bottom, until I asked for help, and started the work to make that happen that I was asked to share who I truly was. That terrified me, who the heck was I anyway? I found a group of people who I knew wouldn’t judge me, who, like me, where finding their way out of the dark, and it was in that safe place that I learned who I really was, and I learned, it was OK to share that I didn’t know when I didn’t. But as I started to find out and I started to truly share my authentic self it felt good to be seen and heard.
Many of us walk around feeling invisible, even in a crowded room, I remember what that feels like. In my case it was a choice, because I was afraid you wouldn’t like me, because I didn’t like myself, but for some, you are there, screaming, jumping up and down, trying to get our attention, and for some reason you are not seen. Maybe you’re picking the wrong people to wave your arms at, maybe you’re not speaking as loud as you think, maybe people are just missing you, right in front of them. Really, at the end of the day, we all just want to be seen and heard, for who we are, truly, and have that be acknowledged, and ideally, appreciated, but just the acknowledgment can sometimes be enough. It’s hard to find our voice sometimes, it may have been shamed into silence by someone, or ourselves, and we can’t seem to get it back. Or maybe we never had it, and now struggle to find the words to express who we are and what we need. Well, I am here to say that I see you and I hear you because I was you. And I know that that little voice you may have today can turn into a loud one, just as mine did. It takes you just sharing it. Sharing it as much as you can with those who will listen, appreciate and encourage you to continue to get louder, braver more authentically you.
We all want to feel like we matter, and we all do. But let us know you’re there. Speak up, tell us who you are, live out loud, because you have something special to offer us, you, who you are is special and we should know that. That also goes for you out there who are struggling right now, suffering or grieving, we also want to acknowledge you, we want to hear from you and we want to listen to you. The greatest gift we can give anyone is the acknowledgment of who they are and how they feel. We all deserve to be seen and heard, something to remember when we step out today and walk among each other this busy world, acknowledge those around you, and let yourself be acknowledged as well. It’s a wonderful thing. SLAY on!
SLAY OF THE DAY: Do you allow people to see you or do you try to stay hidden in the shadows? Why do you do that? What scares you about letting people in? Are these fears based on facts in your current life, or from your past? Are these things you can overcome today? How can you do that? Have you overcome them in the past? How did you do that? How do you feel when someone acknowledges you? Do try to acknowledge others? How does that make you feel when you see how that acknowledgment is appreciated by others? It feels good right? So why not give yourself the same gift, and allow others to see and hear you, just as you are? Do it SLAYER, we want to see and hear just how special you are.
S – self L – love A – appreciate Y – you