It is so easy to get caught up in a storm. The winds are blowing, the snow is falling, the roads get icy, and the sky becomes a confusing, white haze. What do you do? Slow down and try to drive through it or stop, pull over and wait it out? Do you fear the winter storm or do you admire its beauty? The grass has turned brown, the trees have lost its leaves, and the once bright and colorful world has turned grey and lifeless. But then, something marvelous happens, the snow peacefully falls and covers it all. The sun glistens off the snow and you can see the individual snowflakes glisten.
I recently sat in my car, at work, as the snow began to fall, and watched one by one as each snow flake landed on my window. Each snowflake was unique and majestic in its own way. I can’t remember the last time I watched the snow fall, so intently, that I was able to see the delicately detailed and intricate design of each one. From far away, the snow falling may appear as little, white, round balls falling from the sky, uniformly, and the same. But this is not the case; not one is the same. As I sat and thought about this amazing miracle, I thought about people and how when grouped together we can appear to be the same, but when looking closely we each have our own unique features, our own personality, and our own path.
It made me wonder…
Why do people try to group each other as one? Why do so many people want to “fit in” and be like everyone else? Why, if I am placed into one group, can I not fit into another group? We fear being different and we fear the differences we see in others. Our egos feed off of feeling superior over one another.
Why can’t we also sit in awe of our uniqueness and celebrate its beauty? A snowflake does not compare itself to the other snowflakes or try to exclude other snowflakes from its natural grouping as it falls. I think it is natural for humans to pick out similarities and differences and come together and that is okay, but why must we be exclusive to others? Our fight-or-flight response kicks in and we feel the need to defend our honor, but in reality, there is no real danger. The only enemy we are usually facing is ourselves, our ego.
I think nature helps to remind us of how things may have been intended. I was grateful for this reminder that we are not groups, we are individuals. I think it is important when thinking this way to also treat people this way. We are not all the same. Just because one person in a certain group chooses to do something you do not agree with does not mean that everyone else is also going to be a threat.
When I was young I was taught in church that we are all sinners and imperfect and that only God is perfect and that we can never be. But now that I am older, I am learning more about who I think God is, and I am realizing that it is not so. We are all perfect just as we are, because we are all created as such.
Sometimes I catch myself going to open mic nights or performing with other singer/songwriters and I start comparing myself to them. My lyrics are better or their guitar skills are way more advanced, or why do they have more fans? I feel really silly later that I let these thoughts enter in my mind. A friend recently reminded me that we are all on our own journey and that where I am today is exactly where I am supposed to be. I know this to be true, but when those thoughts take over, it is difficult to remember and apply these truths when your ego is telling you lies. My ego says things like, “You aren’t good enough” and “they are making it and you are not.” Or “you will never get paid to play your music and “people want to hear covers not your songs.” How awful is that! Why do we listen to these lies? What lies are you telling yourself? How can you change your thoughts? Why do we allow these thoughts and fears to control us?
Then another reminder came from a friend, she said, “You may not be where you want to be, but look how far you’ve come! You’ve got to celebrate your accomplishments and be proud of what you do have, instead of being hard on yourself for what you do not have.” It’s a funny and karmic thing when your friends are feeding you back all of the same advice that you have given them. So from one harsh critic to another, be gentle with yourself and be patient. You can’t accomplish everything overnight and those that do usually find it doesn’t last. You either fall as fast as you arrive or you want more and are never satisfied. So celebrate the now, be grateful for being here, and be happy with what you do have.
My take home point is this: We are all wonderfully made, like delicate and ornate snowflakes and though we may look alike, none of us are the same, not one. We are all made beautiful and special in our own unique way. Cheesy or not, it is true. I forget that from time to time, so I thought I’d remind you as well. You are so extraordinary and you are perfect just as you are. So don’t be so hard on yourself. You are worthy of love and you are enough.