05 Apr A letter to my younger curious self.
Here is what I wish my younger, curious self knew and believed.
There is nothing wrong with you. So what if you enjoy asking questions? It doesn’t mean that you’re stupid. And so what if you take a bit longer to process things? Do you know what? Curious people sometimes do take longer because they notice more? Relax. Grow into that gorgeous curiosity. In your future, people will adore you for that very same curiosity that is not welcomed at the moment. Not only will they love it (curiosity) in you, they will value that you create space for others to become curious. The very thing that is now causing you some pain, discomfort, judgement and being ostracised, is the very same thing that people will love about you.
Don’t worry about the teachers at school who don’t value exploratory, open-ended questions. They’re fixated on repetition and recalling information. By the time you hit the workplace, the world and technology will have evolved to the point where you don’t need to recall information all the time. Your teachers can’t see this. Listen to the encouraging words of the teachers who believe in you. They are your guardian angels.
Don’t worry about the religious leaders who frown at you with the harshest judgement when you question whether Jesus is indeed a White man who hid in Egypt. They won’t appreciate your inquiry and that’s ok. Sometimes questions are painful and they hold up a possibility people don’t want to see and your curiosity takes them right there. It’s a mirror and they don’t like it.
Don’t worry when you go to events and people start to label you as the person who just asks for the sake of asking. Don’t worry about the people who laugh at you, sometimes behind your back and sometimes to your face, about how outspoken you are. You see, to them, you’re weird. They may even see you as impossible, a trouble maker, a rebel. Someone who is too much. In their minds, they’re thinking – how come she ALWAYS asks questions. In their minds, it’s weird to always want to ask. They could turn it around and go – here is a woman who isn’t afraid to articulate her question. They could turn it around and see you as a role model. But they are not ready for your power. They choose to see your character around curiosity as a liability. Don’t take on that narrative. Don’t take on that shame. It’s their emotional trauma, not yours.
Sometimes you will cry in the bathroom and at home where no-one can see you because you will start to believe these negative voices. Here is the good news though – as you journey, you will start to meet people who deeply admire your courageous, curious voice. And they will support you whole-heartedly. Sometimes you will even be cynical about their support and acceptance. As you grow in life, you will be surrounded by people who accept you as you are. They will provide that loving, nurturing home for your curiosity to flourish. They are your people. They’re your crowd. They will vouch for you until you are able to vouch for yourself.
And when the world finally sees the beauty of curiosity, you will know who was always in your corner, rooting for you. You will know what it feels like to be an outsider and to be ostracized. And you will use this energy to ensure that people don’t do that to others. You will turn your pain into your purpose and your mess into your message. And when you get to that sweet spot it will be sheer magic. You will walk into the room and you will take up space. Your shaky voice will become a clear, succinct voice who isn’t afraid to say what she thinks. No more dimming your curiosity light for anyone. Your light will shine. You will shine.
Keep pushing, you fierce pioneer you! Even when you’re tired, unsure, confused and steeped in the mess. Keep pushing. It’s all part of your unique journey. And know that getting to the other side of self-acceptance and no longer noticing the harsh judgement, will be a sweet victory. As you change and learn to accept yourself, the world will follow suite.
Trust and believe that the stars will align for you.
Your name is Celeste. Remember that.