Inspirational Stories

Being Who You Are is a Strength Not a Weakness

I could see Lyndon’s anger and frustration before he even got in the car.

“Hmmm, I wonder what happened?”, I thought as I slowly wheeled forward in the school car line.

I pulled up to the curb, he climbed into the car and closed the door.

“What’s up?”, I tried to sound cheerful as I braced myself for trouble.

“Nothing.”, he mumbled.

“Yeah, right. What happened”, I pressed.

It took a little prodding but he finally started talking, “I was sitting out in the hall reading my book and this kid came over and stomped on my foot. HARD! And kept doing it.”

My mama mind was in an instant rage…who is this demon child and where is he?

But before I erupted into a total fury, I needed to gather all the facts…what initiated it, what did Lyndon do back, etc. Lyndon isn’t the kind of kid who would start anything but I wanted to be sure he didn’t have some responsibility in this.

But after gathering all the details, it was true…it was unprovoked and just plain mean.

Unfortunately, this wasn’t the first time something like this has happened. Lyndon had a couple of run-ins with meanies earlier this year. I was mad before, but now my anger was at a whole new level.

It wasn’t right and was going to put a stop to it right then and there.

My Plan

As soon as I picked up Maddie I headed back to Lyndon’s school, parked, and told them to wait in the car for me.

Resolutely I marched into the school and asked to see the principal. He was still helping with the car pickup line outside so I said I would wait.

While I waited I paced up and down the hall trying to calm myself down.

Every time I thought about what happened tears of anger and frustration would well up in my eyes. It was just my nature. When I care about something so deeply my emotions tend to hover really close to the surface… and I really don’t like it.

I feel like it makes me come across as weak and not in control. I want to be firm and get my point across without blubbering my way through it.

So I paced. I breathed. I did not want to cry when I talked to the principal.

I walked over to the drinking fountain and said a silent prayer, “Heavenly Father, please, please, please help me not to cry. Please.”

And almost before I could even finish my prayer, I felt His response…

“Showing your emotions is a strength. Not a weakness. Embrace it. I created each of you unique and individual for a reason. Don’t try to be someone else. You’re amazing just the way you are.”

I Can Do This

I still felt a little unsettled with my eminent emotions sitting right on the surface but I’ve learned to trust God, so I took a deep breath and followed the principal into his office.

He was kind and listened as I explained what Lyndon has just told me in the car. He was taking notes and showing that he cared about the unfairness that had taken place. He was doing his duty as a principal.

And then I started to cry.

I didn’t want to. But I couldn’t help myself. It just happened.

And guess what?

I could instantly see his countenance change.

I saw him melt before my eyes. He was kind and caring before but the minute I started crying, he sat up in his chair, looked at me, and with more empathy and love than I have ever seen from him said, “This will NOT happen again. I will PERSONALLY handle this first thing tomorrow morning and it will come to an end right then and there.”

He shared with me a story about how he was bullied in school and never told anyone about it. He just took it day after day. He hated it. And hated going to school and he vowed to not let that happen to anyone else.

He thanked me for coming in and assured me he would take care of it immediately.

I Am Just Who I Need to Be

My thoughts instantly went back to what God had just told me: Showing my emotions is a strength. Not a weakness.

It was so true. Showing my emotions didn’t take AWAY from my authority but rather showed my complete sincerity and intensified my ability to get my point across to the principal. It became my strength in that meeting.

God created us individually. He created us each with massive strengths. We cannot compare ourselves to others and think, if only I was like her or If only I had his talents…

We need to embrace who we are. And trust that God is truly an amazing architect. He created each of us with so much strength and potential. It’s up to us to believe it and be brave enough to share it.