I like you, you’re different

I should probably start this off by stating that I am a person who finds other people enchanting. Whether you’re warm and open, cold and brooding, or somewhere else on the spectrum, I can always make a case for studying (and liking) my fellow humans.

I thrive on the high I get from deep conversation, the buzz I get from silly banter, and the feeling of connectedness I get from shared cultural memories. The people who are “different” to what I grew up with are just as welcome in my life as my beloved life-long friends and close family.

Getting to know an individual over time fills my heart, and the immediacy of people watching in a busy airport sets every cell in my body alight.

More often than not, I stop to look around me – and find myself lost in thought wondering about what brought us all together in this place at this time. I also wonder, how many other people are thinking the same thing as me.

It’s all such a perfectly imperfect magic that draws us together and pushes us apart. And that’s why I love differences in people. At heart I’m shy, but the need to know what makes other people tick keeps me smiling at strangers, starting up conversations with the person sitting next to me on the bus, and reaching out when I’d rather run away.

I’ve felt the wrath of people who’ve boxed me in often enough in life. Being a stranger in a strange land opened me (and countless others) up to hurt that natives who never leave home will never know.

How many times have I been misunderstood, how many cultural references missed, and how often has my homesick phone bill from calls home to my parents far too high? Too often. But, again, it’s he beauty in the difference of others that keeps me sane.

Petty judgement doesn’t bother me. Like I said, we’re all different. Not everyone likes difference, or deals well with it though. It’s scary. It’s unsettling. And, it forces us to face our own biases.

The older I get, the more I realise that it’s people who embrace difference in others that make me happy.

In the end, we are all flesh and blood. And we are all storytellers of our own journey. Let’s all raise a glass and celebrate weirdness, geekery, being different.

Hallelujah!

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