My new favorite song is Pharrell Williams “Happy.” I always feel so empowered and well, pretty darn happy when I hear it. I especially love the videos that he posted on his website – there is usually one person placed in a public location, like Union Station, and then, the song starts.
Soon, a person begins to move with the beat, slowly at first, sort of shy about it since they are in a public place then pretty soon the music overtakes them and they dance, clap their hands and kick their feet appearing to not give a damn what anyone thinks and completely oblivious to those around them.
I love this and feel like I am starting to embrace this attitude now the older I get.
Of course I wasn’t always like that. Most of my life was spent worrying about something – like the impressions I made on people, what other people thought of me, and if I would fit in. I’d be concerned if someone saw me singing in my car.
And worry is so heavy on a soul. I dealt with my share of depression as a result of my constant attempts to meet others expectations and societies expectations, not to mention the opportunities I missed out on as a result. I could never enjoy life; I was too busy trying to be something else – anything else, but me.
Then, the other day my kids’ grandmother said, “You know what, DeAnna? What you have that a lot of mothers don’t have is perspective.” I replied and said, “Deborah, I’m old.” Yeah, we had a good laugh at that. But it got me thinking… slowly but surely over the last 10 years or so something in me changed. I didn’t even realize it was happening. But it must have shown on the outside.
I realized I had stopped worrying about stuff – I didn’t stress about if I thought someone didn’t like me or if they thought I was too fat, loud, or insert other negative description here. I was doing ok feeling ok in my own skin and just being me. In fact I realized I kinda liked who I was.
So it comes down to perspective and, I think, getting older. And when I got older I was given a gift – new babies! And they are lucky because they got a mom with perspective versus being born in my earlier life. How can that be a bad thing?
It isn’t. And it is especially a good thing for my now nine-month-old daughter. She will have the benefit of learning things, maybe the easy way instead of having to go through the self-disrespecting B.S. that I put myself through.
She will learn that she is, above all, an individual with individual thoughts and desires. She will need to conform to no one; she will not have to fit into any mold.
She will learn to have the confidence to explore her world and not be afraid to ask questions, try new things and be silly.
She will learn that we make mistakes. She will and so will others around her. She might be let down as a result, but she’ll learn how to pick herself back up. And she’ll learn to give grace when others disappoint her.
She will learn to rely on herself. I will help her understand that no one is responsible for making her feel a certain way about herself; confidence will come from within.
And she will learn unconditional absolute unfailing unwavering love. I will teach her that – I will demonstrate that to her every day I am breathing.
So, I am pretty excited to embark on this journey with my newly-realized self-respecting attitude and my (new!) kids. I am having fun dancing at dinner time, clapping my hands kicking my feet and just being all around goofy when we play. I crack jokes and make faces even when we are out in public.
And when we are driving I love to put on that Pharrell Williams song and sing – loudly – with full gusto because I know that one of these days my daughter is going to sing right along with me.