From first grade after I repeated school, I remember other classmates being told by the teachers to be like me. As a grade one student I was taken to Grade Five classes to help them with spellings. It was a long walk back to my class. I wondered if the other children liked me or resented me for showing them how to spell. It was not a comfortable space to be done.
There was no running away from this. I remember asking myself why should anyone be like me. I am just me. I am just going about my business, minding my own business.
I find that everywhere I went in my life, before long I am being quoted as a role model. Whether it was at work or home.
Sometimes I just wanted to be invisible so that I don’t stand out in any way but it has always been an effort. I became awkward in my social interactions because I couldn’t put a foot wrong, everything was calculated. Life was too superficial. I think I am too tall to hide and the reflection my bald head is a dead giveaway.
I found the pressure of knowing I might be in the spotlight suffocating at times because I would find myself always thinking, what will be people say, what will people do.
At some some stage as an adult I finally concluded that this business of being on a pedestal, of people thinking you are perfect is nonsense. Noone is perfect, none whatsoever. Why? Because people are deeply flawed and when one is put under the microscope long enough we discover things we don’t really want to know. So why do we set ourselves up for disappointment by choosing to be like someone we don’t really know or understand.
So sometimes I am a complete idiot on purpose. What? To destroy this persona that I built wittingly or not. Why? So that I can be taken much less seriously and nobody thinks I can become a good role model.
But whether I like it or not, my children look up to me. They do so much to please me, to be like me. Some people will look forward to what I say or do.
Whether we like it or not, someone is going to look up to us. However, don’t let that control your life. Don’t let that determine how you live your life. Just be the best you, the real you, the only you.
Live each day knowing that you are being the very best person you can be. Treat people with kindness and compassion. Carry love in your heart, in your words and your actions.
If people feel that you can inspire them in some way or they want to be like you in some areas of life, consider it a blessing. Use it for the greater good in life.
Good day ladies and gentlemen!