Growing up, I always knew I was different. I loved lots of alone time. Where others saw colours, I saw grey. Where others saw grey, I saw colours. I just never was on the same level of thinking or expression as the people around me. At first, I thought it had to do with me being too Western in an African society but then, I moved to a Western society and my uniqueness shone through more obviously.
While I can get lots of alone time here, I am also too introverted. Too removed from an already removed Western culture. So, I don’t fit here nor do I fit back home. Knowing this, I got to work. I tirelessly worked to be like all the others. To open up, to smile more, to be removed but not absent. I did an awesome job during working and socializing hours. Once home, I would bring out my first aid kit with shaky hands and panting breath to bandage my exhausted, bruised and battered personality. And the next day, before my Self could heal, I would go out once more trying to be everyone but myself.
But then, I asked myself: “Why fit in when you can stand out?”. Though I do not consciously intend to be different so as to be noticed, surely, it feels good to remember that in this difficult race of life, where we strive each day to leave footprints of our life’s contributions, ‘originality is the key to being memorable’ – Suzy Kassem.
If I am to be remembered, I would love to be remembered as a woman true to herself…honestly and unapologetically introverted. Are you being true to yourself, girls?