Acceptance

How many times have you been in a situation be it job, home, school or an outing with friends and felt like you were not accepted?
There is a song out by Macklemore and Lewis. The title is Same Love. The song is about accepting gays but this post is about acceptance in general. One part of the song says, “I can’t change even it I tried, even I wanted to…” I have fallen in love with this song because of those 11 words. It’s an acceptance of my reality. It’s an acceptance of who I am and an acceptance of who you are. No, I’m not coming out of the proverbial closet, I am pulling out my soapbox and tapping the microphone. I have something to say.
One day I was sitting around with a group of stay at home mom friends, they were talking about being little girls thinking about what they wanted to do when they grew up. Almost all of them said they wanted to become mommies. When it was my turn to share, I said I wanted to be a Supreme Court Justice with a nanny. When I’m hanging with my core group of friends, they are all business majors, I am a psychology major. We don’t necessarily think the same or approach the a problem the same. I recently moved to a new department at work. I am surrounded by accountants. Again, I am a psychology major. Acceptance.
Is it just me? No it’s not. It’s you too. I’m not inviting people to a pity party. I am inviting you to become more aware of how your beliefs and actions affect those around you. I am asking you to pay attention to others and accept them where they are at this moment in time. How much fun would life be if everybody was the same? I never said we can’t grow or be flexible, I am learning about journal entries. But the core of who I am is who I am. To be perfectly honest, I love me. Acceptance.
My two youngest children attend a charter school. They wear uniforms and this year, the administrators are enforcing vague dress code policies that address hair styles. They are creating an atmosphere of sameness. Their thoughts are the more the children are the same, the fewer the distractions. Fewer distraction equal higher learning and test scores right? Not according to the school’s official records with the state. My thought is give the children an opportunity to be uniquely them. Education is not just academics it’s about the whole person.
If I walked up to you and said step into this box and remain in it for the rest of your life, would you? Okay, the rest of your life is along time, how about for six years? Six months? Would you survive six days? If I gave you some boxes and said your job is to recruit people to live in these boxes, would you? I hope not.
Let me ask you, why do you feel like your religion is better? Why do you spend your time attempting to condemn mine, recruit me into yours or kill me if I don’t convert? Why do you spend your day trying to force people to become your clone? What makes your way the best? Why do you care who somebody else loves? Why do I need to dress like you? What’s wrong with tattoos and non conforming hairdos? Why can’t my daughter wear mismatched socks and my son march to the beat of his own drum? Arrogance? Not acceptance.
One of the first classes I took, when I started my master’s degree journey, was about diversity in the classroom. The book said, we are no longer a melting pot where everybody jumps in, loses their identity, gives up their names, forgets their culture and denies their heritage in order to be the same. We are now or should be progressing toward becoming a salad bowl. Each person is unique and appreciated for what the bring individually. Together, we are no longer an unidentifiable soup but a vibrant, colorful, life giving source. Acceptance.
You see, “I can’t change even it I tried, even I wanted to…”

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