Sometimes you want to feel unique, a feeling that is a part of human nature and what I want to feel most of the time. But I also know that I can’t look down at the beggar on our street while I know she has feelings as I do and of course she would like to have jeans like mine. Just the fact that she doesn’t have money shouldn’t let me feel I’m better than her. Of course she has things in her life she can be proud of. Her cheap clothes aren’t the only things describing her or her life’s accomplishments. I believe that we should all be proud of ourselves and honor our unique qualities. However, this shouldn’t let us think that others are inferior, or should it make others feel less proud.
It was about three days ago that my little brother had a ceremony at his school and every child’s family was supposed to bring any food or music representative of the family’s country. Before going there, I collected some Iranian music and my mother made a tasty desert named Sholezard and a delicious food called Tahchin. I was so proud and I thought my culture and my country were very unique and the best. I thought we are going to be the best group there and nobody could be as fantastic as we were! However, I saw something very different when I reached the school’s café! I never thought of Portuguese costumes as being very similar to Persian traditional ones. Right after that, I heard music coming from string instruments that was familiar and sweet. Not only it reminded me of the classic Persian music, but also made me think.
That night I realized there have been moments in my life that I didn’t notice people around me. Although people might be from so many diverse nations with different belongings, they all share so many things like pride as I did at the International Ceremony. I realized how the three colors of my flag matched with the colors of so many other flags. It was as if there was a rainbow there, representing so many beating hearts that were all the same. Now I know that everybody in the ceremony had something to be proud of that wasn’t so different from my own desire to be special. They all wanted their food to be unique. And, for sure they were. But similar at the same time! They all had accents as my family and I did. “Your food was so dee_lecios; the one with saffron!” I heard from one Israeli woman and I told her how I liked her fantastic food called Sachleb! Together we shared the same feeling and wanted to hear from everybody how our food was and tell them we wanted to travel to their country to taste the food! Now I know that different cultures have so many unique things to share and that I still need to learn from them. I wonder how amazingly that night led me think that not only should I be proud of myself, but also keep it in mind that everybody has something to honor about himself.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.