Twenty years ago, (I was seventeen then) I was a young slim girl with long hair, skinny legs and a very big smile, I could give you anything but don’t you dare go near my shoes! And I had a lot of sisters (four to be precise) who all loved my shoes.
One weekend I came home( I just got an admission to the university then) and one of them took my shoes, the best out of about twenty pairs!
Everyone in my family knew about my addiction to this particular pair and Christy, my sister wore it to a party, even though it wasn’t her size. When I told my mom what my sister did, she’d looked at me in a very strange way. I had thought she would come to my defence and tongue lashed my sister for the invasion of my ‘privacy’, the unlawful use of my personal stuff without my say-so but nah! She did no such thing.
I knew my mom did not condone what my sister did but she had a lot to say about my reaction to it, and when I mean a lot, it could be a phrase or word loaded with meaning. Before she spoke, she closed her eyes briefly and when she opened them, there was a twinkle in her brown expressive eyes,
”Be the change in the world and you can sleep with both eyes closed.” She said simply. I didn’t understand what she meant by that statement and wasn’t ready to listen.
”But mom,” I had protested against the obvious injustice of the situation, not the lesson she wanted me to learn, ”I don’t want to change the world, just speak to Christy to stop sneaking behind my back using my things, just tell her to steer clear of my room!”
And I’d stomped out of the house, exasperated with my mom’s unrelenting idiomatic expressions, deep down I thought she was turning me into a villain for protesting but my mom is an incredibly wise woman, she knew in order for me to live in peace with my sisters and brothers, (and now my husband) I should sometimes put myself under the spotlight and see if I am the problem.
Am I been irrational, irritable, unforgiving, selfish, careless and stubborn? Well, the lists can go on and on but as I grew older and had my own family, I finally understood what she was trying to do.
My mom was training me to be a better person, not a fool that could be trampled upon but a disciplined, principled woman who would treat others the way she wanted to be treated. A woman who would respect, love, forgive and appreciate and treat everyone equally, irrespective of their race, religion or sexuality.
If every human being desires to be the change, the world would indeed be a better place. And it’s never too late, take a look at the man, woman, girl, boy in the mirror today and say to him or her ( I am speaking to you, if you’re still reading this post)
”Be the change…”