“You may shoot me with your words, you may cut me with your eyes, you may kill me with your hatefulness, but still, like air, I’ll rise!”
― Maya Angelou
Acceptance is an issue that a lot of people face from an adolescent into an adult. I can honestly say that it has never been an issue for me. At a young age I knew that I was different and I accepted that difference. I was a sheltered youth, I mainly sheltered myself. I was content with my books, pad, and pen. I was aware of the things that were going on around me but I didn’t allow it to define me.
With the rise in suicide, I find that being accepted plays a major role in one’s everyday life. We are scrutinized by the media, our peers and as well as our family. I realized at a young age that I had a few strikes against me with being African American, a woman, and a lesbian. Instead of making these things that were permanent parts of who I am to stop me from progressing, I use them as tools to motivate me to prove society wrong. People and circumstances will occasionally break you down but you have to be the ultimate strength to overcome any negativity placed in front of you.
I find that acceptance is the answer to most problems that plague us today. We sometimes give too much power to the opinions of others, when we should be our one and only critic. Too much criticism of self is also not healthy. We place too much inference on what society thinks we should be and not on what brings us peace. No one person is the same, so why should we conform to be like others. What is popular doesn’t define what is proper for us. Only you know what is right for you.
You have to remember that you are walking your own path. Forget what everyone else is doing and what others have to say about you. You have to do this in order to achieve what God has placed in front of you. Your life is about breaking your own limits to live a life that is best for you. No one has the power to take you away from your drive and commitment to life. Stop listening to what the world says you should want. Start listening to who you are. You are the beauty you see in others and the gift that you have left unopened. Acceptance begins with you.