My thoughts on being a misfit

July 31 2015

July 31 2015 – Here’s the English version of my blog post from yesterday, I hope you will enjoy the reading;

I’ve always been an outsider, but it never bothered me as long as it’s by choice, though being left outside in a negative manner is a completely different thing. I’ve been ostracized and ignored alike in various aspects of my life without any actual reason, but my flaws and my lack of beauty was something I was made aware of a lot during almost nine years. The words I got to hear were rough. Do I really look that odd? Well, I saw it then and I see it today as well. In the end, it all became truth.

Being the one looked upon as someone with a different look lowers self confidence and self esteem alike, it turns into an inner struggle. A constantly ongoing battle where the fixation is in focus.

It never hurt or offended me if someone thought I was weird or even strange in my way of being, as I do not suffer from being different or odd in my personality, quite the contrary – I’ve always viewed it as my strength. Though still, in some way, I wished to mask the fact that I was different in my way of being with at least looking like others. The all over negative attention I’ve received on my appearance indeed left scars. This negative attention was brought back up in the autumn of 2011 when I received countless emails and comments about my complete lack of beauty and what I ought to do … the words were rough, even this time. Though I choose not to write these here.

I was the one who never quite fit in anywhere. It was like if all the compartments were already taken, there was no place left for me at all, which scared me as I deep inside felt and knew I was not like the others. Perhaps it was the fear of others noticing how different I actually was. That they would discover I was not like them. That feeling may be compared to my great fear of the Christmas crafts day in middle school, the day my class was going to be in scattered parts of the school buildings. The grip of panic from maybe not finding my way. What if I would enter the wrong building or the wrong classroom? I always had this worry about others seeing me lost. I was afraid I’d eventually wind up going about the school yard disoriented, or even worse – entering a classroom only to discover it was not my class.

Being a teen in the mid 80’s wasn’t easy either. I didn’t dress like the others, I didn’t have bleached Levi’s with holes and tearings in all the right places, neither did I have the white and black Takano jumpsuit. My Levi’s were dark blue and missing holes. I tried to make holes of my own with scissors, but it didn’t turn out the way I planned. Not at all. And there was no use in putting them in chlorine for bleaching, everything had gone wrong already. And the Takano jumpsuit in the clothes store – all the cool, black ones were sold out, leaving only a pink one for me. Nobody, and I really mean nobody, wanted the pink one. I stood by a crossroad, the pink one or going without. I desperately wanted to fit in, somehow. So I went home with a pink Takano dress. And I was different. Again. Against my will. This is something that’s been constant throughout my life and occasionally I’ve wondered why that is. I wanted to be like the others so badly, to look like the others – at least wearing the correct garments. When I wanted to buy a pair of nice shorts for my gymnastics class, I knew exactly which ones I wanted. I wanted the black ones with white stripes. But as I went into town to buy them, the entire stock of the black ones had been sold out and only yellow ones with white stripes were left. So there I was, once again wondering why. Why? Right there and then middle school came to mind, where I longed to get my hands on a couple of snow joggers, the cool, white ones everyone else had. But of course, at that specific time the white edition was sold out and there was only one left. The green blue-ish one. And on top of that, the other shoe was deformed. I mean, come on.

For some reason it has been this way my entire life. My attempts at looking like the others failed time after time after time. Sometimes it seemed as if everyone had everything and if they didn’t have everything they received everything eventually and nothing ever went wrong. Maybe this way of thinking is naïve, but that’s how I felt. And I can feel this way to this day.

I was conversing with a wise person about this specific problem of mine, of how things never turned out the way I wished or thought. All that I’ve felt and experienced, different events in my life – my constant attempts at fitting in, but where I always failed. The answer I had somehow felt logical, however outlandish: – See it like this, you’ve always been out of sync with the Universe. Every time you tried to be like the others it never turned out that way. You were never meant to fit in and every time you didn’t have your way it was to bring to your attention that you’re not meant to look like the others. Yes, it sounds pretty logical, actually.

Perhaps it is that way.

When I think about it, I’ve received a whole lot in my life. I have my own way of thinking, I have a unique way of seeing which has been an advantage in my photographing, I can write and express myself in words. And there is a meaning to everything. There was a meaning to never fitting in. Though I can’t do much about my appearance, I can only accept the fact that this is how I look. I am after all me, I’ll continue being me and there’s not a thing in the world I would trade in order to be like everybody else.

41 comments

    1. Many thanks, Paula. Yes, I agree with you… I have figured that sensitive souls has a little more work to do than others. And yes, only the dead fish follow the stream.

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  1. Dear Malin, my friend! You are beautiful, just look at your body and your eyes for example. That’s just the outside, anyway. As for the inside, as you express it in your images – well, I wouldn’t have been coming here so often and for so long if I did not see something special.
    I too feel like a misfit – at least as far as the mainstream goes. My best friend (she of the very long hair in my post today) says she feels like an ‘oddbod’. Though it’s sometimes difficult and sometimes painful – I want to be true to myself and, ultimately, if somebody doesn’t like that/me, then good riddance.
    Have faith in yourself, Malin! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Ashley… I’m so touched by your kind words. I really appreciate your friendship, more than you can imagine. Yes, being odd is difficult, depending on who you are talking to or hanging out with. Your support means a lot to me, I hope you know that. Thanks for everything and for sharing your thoughts. ❤️❤️

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  2. Hi Malin,
    Can imagine that this was a struggle in your life so far, but it feels like your embracing it by now and you should! As others said your work in photos and words is so unique, just stay who you are!
    Hug from Malaysia, Ron

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    1. Ron, yes it was a hard time for me, especially when everything went wrong in my attempts to fit in. I do know more today and you guessed it right; I’m definitely embracing it now, I can even laugh about some of these things today. I really appreciate your hug.

      Hugs and take care, Ron.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. If the person depicted in your pics is you, then I’d kill to look like you. Don’t worry too much about differences to mainstream. They can only be classified as such, because people like you exist.

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  4. This thing, of difference and exclusion, is powerful, isn’t it. Sometimes I don’t feel human. At other times, I feel that others aren’t. At other times, I just laugh at the absurdity of it. It’s odd, but this is my journey. Ravens always say hello. Other birds come close and stare me in the eye. I think they know something. I just don’t know what. What I know is that your photographs speak to me powerfully. I love them so much. The whole idea of social normalcy is only good for socially normal people. They will, of course, say different things. I wish they wouldn’t, but I can’t stop them. I’ve been trying lately to leave a record for the children of the future, those who will need a path through their strangeness. Success won’t happen, if it does, until long after I’m gone. It’s not just me, either, but my whole family. I suspect that my ancestors were an interesting lot.

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    1. It’s definitely powerful! And I do know the feeling… I often feel like an alien or something not human, I also got a rare blood type (as if I wasn’t weird already) ;)

      I really appreciate your kind and very wise words on this subject so thank you from the bottom of my heart.

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  5. I get this. I spent enough of my early years trying to fit in. Gave that up after some failures and decided to be me, like it or leave it. One of the best things i ever did..

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    1. feralc4t thank you so much! I know that you know this feeling. I have decided to be me when I’m with people I trust.

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  6. “We have no reason to mistrust our world, for it is not against us. Has it terrors, they are our terrors; has it abysses, those abysses belong to us; are dangers at hand, we must try to love them…How should we be able to forget those ancient myths that are at the beginning of all peoples, the myths about dragons that at the last moment turn into princesses; perhaps all the dragons of our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us once beautiful and brave. Perhaps everything terrible is in its deepest being something helpless that wants help from us.

    So you must not be frightened if a sadness rises up before you larger than any you have ever seen; if a restiveness, like light and cloudshadows, passes over your hands and over all you do. You must think that something is happening with you, that life has not forgotten you, that it holds you in its hand; it will not let you fall. Why do you want to shut out of your life any uneasiness, any miseries, or any depressions? For after all, you do not know what work these conditions are doing inside you.”

    (Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet)

    I have always trusted poets, artists and thinkers…all the misfits…they see and feel more…they are extra-lucid, I learn… but, this road is just more difficult, I know dear Malin…(…smiling for you…) but it is this what makes us unique, singular…and I couldn´t change that, why should I?…

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    1. Dear Kari, kindest thanks for sharing this powerful text. It certainly says a lot. And I wouldn’t change anything either. Thank you again, my friend – it means so much.

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      1. …(…smiling so much for you…) this book was my “lullaby and friend” book when I was a teenager, and realized that I was not part of the norm… it still makes a lot of sense today…

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    1. I’m not sure if they were blind or not, they saw something they didn’t like and I was different. Thank you for your comment, Jo – I really appreciate it.

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  7. Disturbing thoughts, my friend, but your final paragraph says what is worthwhile, says how things are and should be. And I especially like bercianlangran’s words, re all those who “fit in” – ” They are just cattle, a herd of lookalikes, same thoughts, same opinions” – absolutely, this is exactly right.

    And something else again. I spent some years in Africa and I am sure that those years had a great effect on me, which I am grateful for – maybe something like “nothing like a few years in the Third World to alter one’s views on Life”. And so, returning here, I don’t fit in completely – but I would never label myself a misfit, because that would be to denigrate myself, to imply that I am somehow improper or inadequate. Instead, I am, simply, different.

    And, as I get older, two things are apparent. First, that I may be becoming more different. And second, that this bothers me less and less. I have no inclination to try to “fit in”, I want to be just as I am – as others have already said here, this is the way to be. A :)

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  8. I’ve always lived outside the lines of life
    I’ve never compromise my beliefs and faith
    I’ve paid for this
    But I would have it any other way
    You either love me or hate me
    Gray is the color of indifference and intolerance
    The words you speak is the house you live in
    I am proud of the house I have built
    You have been with me since day one
    I consider you a good blogosphere friend
    Your expression,your art , your words
    Are always powerful and inspiring
    The Sheldon Perspective

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