Recently I did some shopping for warmer winter clothes. Now, living in the North Texas area, it doesn't get as cold as other parts of the U.S., but I'm a wimp. I want to be warm. And what to my wondering eyes did appear? One-size fits all winter leggings!
Being thoroughly pleased with myself for recently losing 40 lbs(!) I was inspired to buy 3 pair of these cozy leggings for the upcoming cooler days.
Pair #1 - fit like a charm.
Pair #2 - probably made for a child.
Same brand - same style - same store - same day - totally different fit.
Who knows about Pair #3! I guess I'll see in a few days.
The point of my story is this...most of our lives, we are told that conformity is a very good thing. Get a good education; meet a good person and get married; get a good job; buy a good house; have good kids; go to a good church; have good friends; have a good retirement. Ah, the good life.
But, what if you don't fit into that 'good mold?'
What if you don't want to go the traditional route in education and jobs? Does that make you not good?
What if you don't want to get married and have kids? Not good?
What if you want to live a more transient life; not be tied down to one house, one city, one experience? Not good?
One size simply does not fit all. Yet, even in today's fluid society there is still a quiet, unstated reference to what the good life looks like. And for those who are struggling against it, you can feel pretty lonely.
You may wonder what my point of reference is in all of this, since I did go to school, get married, have 2 kids, buy a house, have a good church, etc., etc., etc. I think some of it comes from having a son who doesn't want to have kids. I've wondered (as any mom does, I'm sure) how I failed him in his understanding of how valuable children are to your life. But his explanation is that he knows the responsibility it requires, and he knows that as a dad, he has to give to his children. He just would rather not have to make that choice. He enjoys the freedom of making the choice for himself. It may sound selfish to some, but to me, he knows who he is. He knows what he needs to shine. He knows that it wouldn't be the best for his kids. Thus, no kids.
As a woman who has worked for herself for the past 10+ years, I also know that it is hard for some of us in this world to be content in the 9-5; even though it would probably be easier. Sometimes I truly wish I was one of those people who could be settled in a regular job. I could go in, do my job, clock out, go have a glass of wine with the girls or meet my husband and friends for dinner, and leave all of the aggravation of meeting the bottom line numbers, quotas, marketing, sales, development and networking to someone else.
BUT NO! Not me! And if you've read this far, probably not you either!
Beyond these thoughts about marriage, career and kids - are the thoughts about age, appearance and worth.
Our one-size fits all world wants to shrink us all into a mode that remind a bit of the Stepford Wives movie. Here's a bit of it for your smiling pleasure.
A huge part of my mission, is simply helping people, women primarily, understand that they are wonderful just the way they have been created!
All of us have quirky things. Every one of us has things we're proud of, and things we'd die on the spot if people knew.
I read recently, that we usually judge others by their actions, and ourselves by our motives/intentions. And while on the outside of this, it looks like we are more harsh with others than ourselves, I see it another way entirely. I think that on our best days, we often think we aren't good enough. And on our worst days - we consider ourselves more wicked than anyone else.
Poor self esteem, poor image, lack of confidence aren't BORN with us. We develop them throughout years of believing that we are missing the mark of the one size fits all world. I heard a celebrated speaker say, "Children aren't born with low self esteem."
Taylor Cameron wrote a terrific article in February of this year that discusses the damage a one-size fits all clothing standard does to the self image of girls and women. Face it - most of us don't fit! So, now they say 'one size fits MOST'. Still nope.
The point I'm trying to make, is that it's utterly ridiculous to believe that one pair of leggings, or a dress, or a suit would fit most people! Really, we know better. Why is it then that we try to put that same concept onto the lives of the people around us, or onto ourselves?
Psalm 139:14 (NLT) states: "Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous--how well I know it." David didn't make any apologies for his quirkiness, weirdness, madness. He tells the God who created him, "Good job on making me!" When was the last time YOU told the Lord, "Hey! Thanks for making me the way I am."? More likely, your words were, "Why did you make me this way?".
I want to challenge you to look at who you really are, and be thankful.
Thankful that you aren't like everyone else.
Thankful that you are wonderfully complex.
Thankful that you are quirky, and weird, and that you just don't fit in.
And more than that, go and spread the good news! One size DOES NOT FIT ALL, and it isn't supposed to!
Live Inspired ~ Live At Your Best