Never Compare

When I was young, I was always finding fault with myself. For instance, I thought I needed a nose job because I find my nose ugly. Sometimes, I would stay in front of the mirror and pinch my nose to see how I would look like if I have a better looking nose. I also think I had the worst looking legs because I have sensitive skin and my legs received a healthy dose of skin allergies, skin irritations, and insect bites when I was growing up. I suffered from inferiority complex back then because I thought I wasn’t pretty enough, I didn’t sing well enough, I didn’t do good enough, etc. I feel there’s always something missing in my life.

But with age comes wisdom, so they say, and as I grow older, I realize I’m as good as everyone else. God made me who I am for a reason, and I should bask in my uniqueness. Instead of being envious of others who are prettier, richer, more intelligent, and more blessed than I am, I should just always, always keep in mind that all of us are created differently and if we lack some things in our lives, God compensates for those in some other way. For instance, you may be poor but talented, and that talent can help you change your life for the better.

I remember a poem we discussed in our high school class whose message really stuck with me. Whenever I feel inadequate, I just recite these lines from the poem, and I feel okay: “Talents differ: all is well and wisely put/ If I cannot carry forests on my back,/ Neither can you crack a nut.” I hope the poem below significantly impacts your life the way it did mine.

By Ralph Waldo Emerson

The mountain and the squirrel
Had a quarrel;
And the former called the latter “Little Prig.”
Bun replied,
“You are doubtless very big;
But all sorts of things and weather
Must be taken in together
To make up a year
And a sphere.
And I think it’s no disgrace
To occupy my place.
If I’m not so large as you,
You are not so small as I,
And not half so spry.
I’ll not deny you make
A very pretty squirrel track;
Talents differ: all is well and wisely put;
If I cannot carry forests on my back,
Neither can you crack a nut.”

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