Sitting on the cushioned bench next to my son, I feel a bit conspicuous. The pew is mostly empty and only six rows from the front, so most of the people in the chapel are behind us. Before long, my other boy slips in beside me. One look at him and I feel even more noticeable. Peeking down the row, I spot my husband. Yep. Him too.
Several years ago at some sort of gathering I overheard some of the “cool people” talking about Christmas themed clothing and how dumb it is to wear it. I sat there in my festive sweater dying of embarrassment and never wore it again. Eventually all of my holiday clothing (something for every day of the week) ended up in the give-away bag. And now, here I sit in my new Christmas sweater with a silly dancing polar bear on the front of it. Somehow they are in stores again and okay because now they are called “ugly” Christmas sweaters.
I don’t think they are ugly! In fact, I think these sweaters are wonderful!
It seemed like such a great idea… yesterday. But today, in the here and now, I wonder, “What if people are laughing at us?” Taking a deep breath, I remind myself, “It doesn’t really matter what they think. JUST BE YOU!” Just being me, means I might stand out sometimes. I might look weird or do weird things because, well… I AM WEIRD.
Fitting in used to be high priority in my life, and I took great measures to live up to the standards that others set for me. It kept me safe from ridicule and embarrassment but at a very high price. Worrying about what others thought of me sucked all the joy right out of my life.
So here I sit, in the sixth pew back wearing my bright green Christmas sweater with a dancing polar bear on the front. My family sits with me sporting their sweaters as well.
And I am unbelievably happy.
Even as I fight the negative thoughts in my head, it is fun…
Terrifyingly fun to be different.
To be weird.
A little side note — I finally got my website fixed!
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