Are you weird? Do people think that you are strange or different?
Sunday, as I was walking home from the pool, I passed by a patch of moss, happily growing in a cracked area of my neighbor’s sidewalk, nestled right up against the grass. The lighting was just right …. a few sunbeams thrown here and there across the cement and green. It reminded me of the moss at the foot of the oak just outside my kitchen window. I thought about how much I liked moss and thought, “THAT’s tomorrow’s ‘Makes Me Happy Monday’ post!”
I ran on home and grabbed my camera and headed back to snap a few shots.
Having just been at the pool, I was still in my bathing suit cover-up ….. and running shoes because I run back and forth to the pool (to do laps at break time). I know. Sounds goofy. I think it may be goofy. But the quick sprint up there (once or twice a day) warms me up for swimming laps. It works for me.
I lie down on the ground and start snapping away … wondering if the neighbors think I’m odd. Or if owner of the yard I’m near might be getting mad at me for squishing her grass which was just laid last year.
Do all people do that? Do all people think that they’re the weird ones in the neighborhood? Do all people think that they’re the loud ones? Or the strange ones? I don’t know. I’m just asking. Maybe not…..
A car passes me…. and then another and I realize that
…. horizontally, on the ground … it may look like I’m wearing a dress
…. that is hiked up pretty high almost exposing my panties.
BUT…. I’m actually in a bathing suit cover
and I have on a bathing suit underneath.
But, people may not realize that … since I’m prostrate on the sidewalk
… in a dress and running shoes, no less.Yep. This photoshoot is over (whoosh … whoosh … another car or two pass by). I get up.
I stand up and one of my FAVORITE Augustans … a neighbor from a few blocks over whom I far too seldom see, yells from the next block where he has just parked his car as he heads to the pool. “Hey! What are you doing?” I walk towards him to explain and see he is with his family and another favorite family of ours from church and co-op. I’m thrilled to see them! I get closer and explain what I was doing and we chat and then my friend, Tom, says, “Karen, you’re weird.” I come back, “No, I’m not.” I mean, what DO you say to that? Tom insists, “Yes, Karen, you are. You are weird.”
Now, Tom’s not such an average guy himself. In fact, on his first date with his wife who is a good friend, they spent several hours talking about Russian history. Ok? So, for him to say that I’m weird is …. weird.
When I was young, my Dad used to ask me, “Why do you always have to be different?” It always came out like it was a bad thing. It made me wonder …. WHY I always wanted to be different. If Dad thought it was bad, then it must be bad. But, Dad also used to get mad at me because I couldn’t get to the zip mart and back without getting lost. I have a very, very bad sense of direction. He had a good sense of direction and he wasn’t “different.” He didn’t understand our differences.
I was well into my mid-to-late twenties
before I accepted that I would never be able to look at the sun and figure out which way is East
and I would never be satisfied with a blue car
if all the other cars were blue.
And I think that my own seating in a gear that is out of sync with most
motivates me to be more accepting of other people who don’t “fit the mold.”
With each passing year, I’m more and more thankful that I’m completely comfortable in my skin. I love who I am. I love being different. I’m perfectly pleased that I’m internally motivated to go against the flow. I see life at a different angle than most. In fact, I LOOK for the new and different angle. Life is always fresh. It is always an adventure. Even when life gets rough, I’m intrigued because I’m being given the opportunity to see things from a new perspective.
And maybe that’s weird.
I went back up to the pool later to visit with the Heils and Brownlees after I put away my moss photoshoot. When Glory, who lifeguards at the pool, walked over to chit-chat, Bob began to tell her the story about me laying on the ground. She stopped him and pointed out, “Oh, I’ve already been told by two or three people.” <shrugs> Guess more people saw me than I realized. <grins> I’m thankful she’s a mature, strong young girl who embraces my eccentricies. When she was told about my position, she replied something along the lines of, “Yep. That’s my Mom.” She said she knew I probably had a camera in hand. The girl knows me.
It was tough hearing Tom’s words. They didn’t go in easily.
They weren’t meant to be painful – they were matter of fact.
And, in fact, they were just an honest observation.
Do people think you are unusual? Strange? Weird? Different?
Are you okay with that?
And are they right?