The past decade has been an intense journey of self-realisation. I am learning so much about myself, my beliefs, my tolerances etc. It has been a journey with difficult obstacles I never thought I would encounter and confrontations I never thought I would have to engage in. Lessons not only about myself, but about others in my life too.
As I have developed and learnt more about the values that are true to my heart, I have also been met with a lot of resistance which I never expected. Over the years I have managed to keep resistance at bay by accommodating others, because that is what I have been conditioned to do – in the short term this was always the easiest option. I found my sanity through different outlets that didn’t illicit the confrontations that I so dreaded.
Accommodating others was easier because it was not really worth my energy to justify my beliefs. I am happy with who I am and the person I grow to become everyday. I distance myself from those who impose their beliefs on me and have never been one for confrontations – they take more energy out of me that just not engaging. However, I have realised that by constantly accommodating others I was also creating a bad precedence and my silence throughout the years has given others the power to continue to say and do what they wanted irrespective of how it made me feel.
When Ayaan was born I realised things had to change. It is important to me that as parents we teach Ayaan through our actions not through our words. The feeling of always accommodating others has made me feel lonely, resentful, helpless and anxious, and it’s something I don’t want for Ayaan. This sudden change in me has caused some friction with people who are not used to me speaking up against them. Having Ayaan has taught me that it’s ok to not always accommodate others especially when I don’t agree with them. Continuing to do so this will only show Ayaan not to Stand up for himself or that it’s ok to have other people tell you what you should do and how you should feel.
Much too often culture and tradition are used as excuses and a way to enforce dominance over others. People change, beliefs change and as a result so does culture and tradition. Belief and faith are very important to me, they can be so powerful, but they are also very very personal. You may not agree with my beliefs and thoughts and you don’t have to, I only ask that mine are respected.
I want Ayaan to grow up respecting other peoples opinions and to know that it’s ok to have his own, which may not agree with others. I can’t teach him this if I don’t demand respect for myself and my own beliefs. I feel with everything in life, it’s a personal choice and there’s no right or wrong. So long as you’re not harming others, yourself and your child it’s really no one’s business to tell you how to be, how to live and how to love.