You know what? There are strange people in the world. There are a bunch of weirdoes…. And (perhaps worse) some people really are normal.
At school I was called weird from the first day onwards. Looking back, I suppose I was. My imagination was (and remains) very important to me. My family is far from normal and I spent a lot of time by myself. I bought beads and did crafts and made friendship bracelets and odd things out of Fimo. I talked to myself. I spent time looking at animals and I was enthusiastic at school. I wasn’t cool. I just didn’t care about the regular things that I was supposed to.
I know that the pressures that were put on me are still being put on young people now. Girls should be carbon copies of each other and boys should wear the right stuff, be manly but not “aggressive”, gentle but not “weak” and no one should be weird.
I can remember not caring about the weirdness label – mainly because I didn’t care about the opinion of anyone who attacked me.
I didn’t care but I still tried to fit in. I still tried to persuade my mum to buy me brand name trainers and let me wear short skirts. The thing is that when you are surrounded by expectation, either from family or peers, it feels like your world will cave in if you don’t succumb to it. The normal people obviously know what they are talking about – and there are so many of them. They can’t all be wrong. Can they?
And I am so relieved to have broken free of those ill-advised, fear-driven expectations.
If you are young and feel out of place – you need to embrace it – that “out-of-place-ness” is literally your USP – unique selling point. It will take you up mountains, on stage or around the world.
I travel and live alone. I have friends across the world and I do what I want, supported by myself. Yeah. I’m weird. Properly, awesomely weird.
My weirdness powers me. I couldn’t design in the way I do, be confident in my abilities or take the rewards I deserve without my weirdness. I wouldn’t be me.
Normality and stability suits a lot of people. It’s sensible. They have nice homes, straightforward desires, general satisfaction and their hair is in great condition. Part of me envies them that lack of wonkiness….
……but only a tiny little part.
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