Every club, society or group I`ve joined in my life, came with its set of rules and regulations. It`s how they defined themselves. You as an individual were called to adhere to them because you had a shared interest, whatever that maybe.
But then there were also the unwritten rules, culture and traditions each of them had. And just like the ones written in stone, you had to adhere to them too. Anything outside of that…well, that`s what I`m writing about here now.
Even when you`re part of the renegade club, believe me, the renegades also come with a set of rules. Whether it has to do with language or dress code, acceptable behavior etc. Anything outside of that even in such a group would be viewed as rebellious.
Now look peeps, I`m not saying rules are necessarily bad, what I am saying however is that rules meant to alienate people in whatever form, (polite awkward silence and looks being given over wine glasses as Suzy, shame poor Suzy, over shared again at the tennis club), is bad.
We are individuals that make up a collective. Our quirks and interests set us apart. I also believe, our uniqueness, add, not distracts.
I think one of the most freeing things someone ‘said’ (because it was in text form) to me lately was to never stop being myself. They liked who I was- in a school of fish that raised virtual eyebrows at my phrases and exclamations. At my no barred attitude and honesty. At how I simply articulated my worth, my opinion and in that, I believe, gave others the courage to be themselves.
The recent passing of Maya Angelou made me think of these clubs, groups and societies; we give ourselves up to, especially when we value their opinions. When we view them as a means to learn and grow. To even give back what we`ve learned.
I came to this realization, you can`t let your light, your voice shine if you`re constantly being silenced or scorned. If you care about being silenced or scorned. And if you chose to be silenced and scorned.
You`re not a rebel or uncouth when you don`t adhere to someone else`s construct. Yes you are outside of their rules, but not outside of life`s. The greatest hypocrisy some parents perpetuate is telling their children to be themselves, when they`ve lost the ability to recognize it within their own adult worlds.
Living outside of the rules to me means being true to yourself even when convention demands of you to be everything but.
“Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don`t you take it awful hard
‘Cause I laugh like I`ve got gold mines
Diggin’ in my own backyard
You may shoot me with you words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I`ll rise.”