I’ve never been normal. No one who knows me would say that. I’m pretty sure that I was born with a red stamp across my face that said, “THIS KID IS DESTINED NEVER TO LIVE A NORMAL LIFE – NO MATTER WHAT ANYONE DOES TO TRY AND SAVE HER, SHE CAN’T ESCAPE HER LIFELONG SENTENCE.” At least that’s how it feels sometimes.
Imagine something with me for a moment, will you?
A skinny eleven-year-old girl with short hair and bangs, runs out to the van and jumps in. She is wearing a knee length low cut red dress with a short sleeve red shirt under it (and at least three necklaces). Her oversize sandals are quickly thrown to the floor. While her parents take a missions class, the girl chases after a couple older boys on the play set, determined that she’ll beat them. As she runs, her necklaces clank and bang against each other. At last, exhausted (but victorious over the boys) she plops down inside the little room, chews a stick of gum, takes out her sketch books and pencils and draws an eye.
That was me then. *cue the crickets* Me now is much more reclusive, distrusting and quiet. Something’s haven’t changed though. I still love gum, drawing eyes and I still dress in weird clothes (except now I wear flip flops that are too small).
Being branded with the stamp of Weirdism never really bothered me until I was twelve or thirteen. Then BAM. My eyes were opened to reality and I realized that I didn’t belong anywhere.
Anywhere other than an island….for misfit toys.
A few months ago we watched a movie called Ugly Dolls. The story started out on this island full of misfit toys. These toys were all ugly and deformed – manufacturing accidents. But they were so happy together. And they believed that they could be loved for who they were – misfit and all. But then they realized that they were different, ugly, strange and they lost all of their joy. As I watched that movie, I was thinking, “That is seriously so me.”
I’m sure there are several other people who know what I’m talking about and how it feels to be different from the rest of the world. To you, my friends here on this island, can I speak to you from my heart?
It seems like we’re all alone here. Stranded, lost, forgotten. We’re too weird, too ugly, too broken to be loved. We’re too different to ever find our place. Even if we dress, talk and act like everyone else, we still bear that brand right in the middle of our faces. We’ll be stuck as ugly misfits forever. At least that’s what life can seem like sometimes. But you know what? We have gifts, very special gifts that other people don’t have. We can relate to those who are hurting. We can comfort others who are lost because we know what it feels like. We are deep, beauty-loving people. We are so loved, whether we see it or not. God, the one who created us as we are, doesn’t see that mark of Weirdo as a curse. It is a gift, a tool and something that is truly beautiful. We’ve just gotta have the eyes to see it in that way. The world may never see us as normal. That’s okay. (And man, it hurts to say that). We’ve got something better than average. We’re unique. And that’s a special gift. Cherish it and don’t be ashamed of it. Maybe this island isn’t as bad as we thought. We just have to learn to see the beauty of it.