Maybe You’re Just You

When people first meet me, the first thing they usually say is this:

You’re really sweet.

You’re really kind.

You’re really nice.

At first, it seems like that’s not a bad thing, you know? Like being really of something. That’s fine. That’s good. Over time, however, that really changes into too.

You’re too sweet.

You’re too kind.

You’re too nice.

All my life I’ve heard that I’m too sweet/kind/nice {insert-whatever else synonym here}. All my life. It’s the first thing anyone says. Or they mention that I’m short or that I have a great smile. Now, yes. I am short. And you know what? I do have a great smile. I’m confident enough to say that. I smile at everyone I walk past because you never know what people are going through. Maybe they could really use a smile. And maybe — just maybe — they could use a little kindness.

When I was younger, I was a people pleaser. I did what my friends wanted because well, I wanted to have friends. I did what Heather (my mother) wanted because I thought that maybe if I made her happy, she’d stay home and be with us kids. Growing up as a people pleaser — and if you were and maybe still are one you know this — kind of sucks. People walk all over you like you are nothing to them. You are their doormat. That’s all you are to them. As I grew up I realized that. I realized that I had no voice because I thought — believed that I wasn’t allowed to speak up because it would be rude. I believed that if I said something wrong that I would no longer have friends. That they would turn away after I finally said no. It wasn’t really until I moved to Arkansas at 19 that I realized that I could say no. I could have an opinion. I could have a voice. Thank you to my aunt Wendy for that. Yes, I am proud of that. I’m proud that I am not afraid to voice my thoughts. Now, don’t get wrong. Sometimes I still do bow down or out of an argument because I simply don’t care enough to say someone is wrong or because I simply don’t want to continue on with this argument. That is something I’m still working on. It will take time but I will get there.

The thing is, even if I do get to that point where I am the first to give my opinion, I don’t want to lose my sweetness or kindness or niceness. No, I’m not going to let anyone walk all over me. I am not a doormat. I am not however going to be the person who is so aggressively opinionated. You know the ones. The ones on the internet who start arguments and never let it go. The people that my aunt and I look at and say:

Tell it to them, Taylor.

Here’s the thing, I don’t see a problem with being sweet or kind or nice. Don’t let people walk all over you. Don’t be a doormat. But also, don’t be a jerk. The world is shit, okay? And yeah, it’s full of shit people at times. Most of the time, honestly. But I still believe that there are good people. And if you can just be that one person who can be kind, then maybe, the world won’t be such a shitty place. No, I’m not saying that kindness is going to save the world. I’m not saying that love is either. That’s some Lifetime, Hallmark bullshit. What I am saying is this. There are already enough assholes in the world. How about you not contribute to the asshole pandemic? It takes more effort to be kind to someone that it does to be a jerk.

So yes.

I am sweet. I am kind. I am nice. But never mistake that for weakness. I will have your back if you have mine. I will keep your secrets if you keep mine. I will protect you if you protect me. If you betray me, that trust takes a long time to regain. But you can regain it, if I feel you are worthy. If you hurt someone I love, you will never see me coming. I am ruthless when it comes to the people I love. I am fiercely passionate about the things I believe in.

I am sweet. I am kind. I am nice. But there is so much more to me than that. Those words do not define me because I like the rest of you am a complicated individual. But while those words do not define me completely, I am also not ashamed to be those things. Sweetness, kindness, niceness is not a weakness. It’s a superpower.

So I want you to take a moment. What is your weakness? What do people tell you you are too much of? Maybe you’re too loud. Maybe you’re too proud. Maybe you’re too sweet. Like me. Maybe you’re too serious. Maybe you’re too funny. Maybe you’re too brave. Maybe you’re too cautious. Whatever it is. I want you to think. Because maybe, just maybe, that’s not a weakness. You’re not ‘too‘ much of anything. Maybe you’re just. . . .you.


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