I’ve always been a fan of Dr Seuss - a devotee, not only as a teacher and a mother (& grandmother) but as an admirer of his attitude to life and the wisdom of his words.
His simple and amusing books have helped millions of people throughout the world to learn to read, while imparting gems of philosophical wisdom dispersed in the undercurrent of his words.
A favourite quote is:
‘Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter, don’t mind.’
Oh, how true - and oh, if only everyone could digest that thought and remember it - and act upon it.
Then there is:
‘Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is You-er than You’
Sadly, most people go through life imagining they are something other that who (or what) they truly are. We all do it; we (nearly) all have a vision of ourselves that is different from the true self.
Likewise, I suspect we (nearly) all have a vision of how others see us other than the way they really do see us.
I have always had a feeling that I have a lot of ‘catching up’ to do before I can be like other people. I feel that most people have a better grip on life and a better approach to everything than I have.
I remember throughout my childhood, even though it was a fairly happy time, often thinking that I would never be as good as the other children in my class. Not only as far as intelligence went but even as far as having the ‘right’ look and the ‘right’ family and even the ‘right’ pencils, for heaven’s sake!.
Not so very long ago I had a simple reunion get-together with some old (yes, quite OLD) school friends, from long ago. While talking to a girl – now a middle-aged mother and grandmother - I mentioned some of my not-so-pleasant memories of school days. She surprised me by saying, ‘But, Dianna, you were always so clever!’
What a shock. I had never thought that any other girl in my class would have thought I was clever.
I had spent many a school day trying to be just like the other girls and never seeming to quite make it. That at least one girl had a vision of me as a clever person was a small revelation.
Perhaps it was a late-in-life jolt to my self-esteem and opinion of myself - to realise so many years later that others’ views of me (even though as a child) were quite different from what I had imagined.
So, I try to follow Dr Seuss’s advice and not even try to think about what others may think of me and to remember that I do not have to conform to anyone’s ideas or ideals - and to remember the words,
‘There is no one alive who is You-er than You’
Thanks, Dr Seuss!
I choose to comment on social issues and write creatively on a variety of subjects - for a variety of audiences.