My favorite fairy tale of all time is Cinderella. Not for the makeover provided by her fairy godmother or the heated night of passion shared by Cinderella and the prince. I love the story because of the hilarity provided by the two ugly step sisters. My favorite part is when they try to shove their big, fat feet into Cinderellaâ€™s glass slipper.
How ridiculous did those girls look as they desperately shoved their huge feet into a shoe that was clearly too small? We have all been faced with trying to force something to fit. We have all tried to squeeze ourselves into a mould- to be someone weâ€™re not. I know I did it. My mould (my Cinderella) was my big brother Jordan.
I wanted to be just like Jordo. Who could blame me? I have the most amazing brother in the world! I have always wanted to be just like my big brother for as long as I can remember. I would try to do everything Jordan did- everything. My mom tells me that when I was little she would run into the washroom shocked to find me with my pants around my ankles standing over the toilet, trying to pee standing up. She said I would cry because I just wanted to pee like Jordan did. I even wanted to look like him. I bought the same â€œboysâ€ Air Jordan shoes he had even though I knew nothing about basketball. You would think I was a huge Michael Jordan fan. Nope I was just a huge Jordan Jakymyshyn fan. I had to tag along everywhere he went. I would follow Jordan and his friends to build forts, ride motorbikes and I even went to every skate park in town. I am proud to be, â€œJordan Jakymyshynâ€™s little sister.â€
Jordanâ€™s best quality is that he isnâ€™t like the typical older brother who is embarrassed to have his little sis tag along. He invites me! I can remember in grade six when his friend Matt said, â€œSeriously man, does your sister have to do everything you do?â€ Jordan calmly replied, â€œYup!â€ He didnâ€™t care what his friends had to say because he is his own person and never tries to be anyone else. He is a true individual. He is genuine. He is an inspiration.
We should all be more like Jordan. We should stop trying to be like everyone else in this world and be ourselves. Be proud of who we are and what we have- little annoying sisters included. Being something we are not is actually a hard job. Faking something is a lot more work than being something. Trust me, there have been many times that I have tried to be someone I am not. In the past I tried to be the tough girl that didnâ€™t let anything bother her. When someone disrespected me I would dismiss it and wait a year to realize it actually bothered me. It would have been a lot easier to deal with it in the moment than to stew over it for a year. I am glad I woke up to this when I did and no longer do I fake being a big tough chick.
I try to embrace my true self – but I still slip into the trap. Just recently, I met someone who I tried to impress. I was so embarrassed with the car I was driving that instead of parking it outside of his house I parked it three blocks away. If only I was able to just park my car in the personâ€™s driveway, I would have avoided the $60 parking ticket. See? it is so much easier being yourself and a whole lot cheaper too!
This is even true in the yoga world. Some yoga teachers and I were discussing the authenticity of yoga. What is real yoga? The conversation got intense. We discussed yoga competitions and how Bikram Choudhury even wants to have yoga in the Olympics. Some may argue that this goes against everything yoga stands for- yoga is about enlightenment, acceptance, yadda, yadda, yadda. Well, then yogis should accept that some people want to compete in yoga competitions. The same goes for yogis that make fun of those people that, in their eyes, donâ€™t understand what yoga is really about. It angers them to hear people say yoga is about getting a good workout and sweat. Well it is. Donâ€™t get me wrong, I believe it is about much more but I understand that for some people yoga, for the sole purpose of fitness, is very real. Accept that yogis! The one that almost put me over the edge this week is when I came across this pictureâ€¦
Yup, Playboy Yoga! No chanting, no Sanskrit, no clothes, fully decked out in makeup and I bet this yogi even eats meat! (gasp) I too, shook my head at first but then thought it seemed pretty real. I mean the girl in the picture was a playmate. I figure it is better they call it Playboy Yoga than â€œMormon Yogaâ€ or â€œYoga for Athletesâ€ (assuming she is not a Mormon or an athlete.) So what if her intention is to do yoga to limber up for a photo shoot and to look hot? At least she is clear about her intention and is not trying to be something she is not.
The easiest thing to be in the world is you. The most difficult thing to be is what other people want you to be. Don’t let them put you in that position. -Leo Buscaglia
When you are truly genuine, there will invariably be people who do not accept you. And in that case, you must be your own badass self, without apology. -Kate Goodman
So you see it is vitally important to be who you are fully because there is no failure in being you. We could only ever be the second best someone else anyway. And when you are not being true to yourself and try too hard to please others it takes you away from your heart. So instead of trying to shove your feet in someone elseâ€™s shoes, walk proudly in your own.
I will do it too. No longer will I try to be my brother, I will however continue to be inspired by him.
Below is my favorite poem ever! Enjoy!
It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you ache for, and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart’s longing.
It doesn’t interest me how old you are. I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love, for your dream, for the adventure of being alive.
It doesn’t interest me what planets are squaring your moon. I want to know if you have touched the center of your own sorrow, if you have been opened by life’s betrayals or have become shriveled and closed from fear of further pain!I want to know if you can sit with pain, mine or your own, without moving to hide it or fade it, or fix it.
I want to know if you can be with joy, mine or your own, if you can dance with wildness and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes without cautioning us to be careful, to be realistic, to remember the limitations of being human.
It doesn’t interest me if the story you are telling me is true. I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself; if you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul; if you can be faithless and therefore trustworthy.
I want to know if you can see beauty even when it’s not pretty, every day, and if you can source your own life from its presence.
I want to know if you can live with failure, yours and mine, and still stand on the edge of the lake and shout to the silver of the full moon, â€œYes!â€
It doesn’t interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up, after the night of grief and despair, weary and bruised to the bone, and do what needs to be done to feed the children.
It doesn’t interest me who you know or how you came to be here. I want to know if you will stand in the center of the fire with me and not shrink back.
It doesn’t interest me where or what or with whom you have studied. I want to know what sustains you, from the inside, when all else falls away.
I want to know if you can be alone with yourself and if you truly like the company you keep in the empty moments.
-Oriah Mountain Dreamer
Peace, peace, peace
NEXT WEEK! Spring cleaning