I’m always proud of the two major takeaways from my elementary school career.
The first is what empathy is. My music teacher in grade five was tired of some kids being disruptive, so he told our homeroom teacher and she sat us down one day and wrote the word EMPATHY on the chalkboard. “Does anyone know what this means?” Not a one of us did. To summarize, she taught us that being disruptive wasn’t showing empathy or compassion to our music teacher, and that essentially we should stop being rude to him. I don’t know or care what the other kids absorbed; I understood right away. To this day, being empathetic is always something I try and practice. It comes second nature usually, and I secretly judge anyone who has not refined this skill, sorry to say.
The second thing I learned is what a fair test is. It was probably the only thing I learned in science class. Basically, the first time you try an experiment, you can’t assume the results are typical because you only have one result. So you try it a second time. But if the result is different, that means now you’ve done two tests that have given different results, so you can’t glean any sort of information from it. If the result is the same, it still shows that your results might be a fluke. So you try it a third time, and this is how you can determine what the prevalent outcome will be because it happened 2 out of 3 times. It’s about fairness, my teacher said, and because of this, I tend to stick by this rule even now in my everyday life.
Lately I’ve been thinking about what has happened to me in life and what I would like to happen to me. In the past, I haven’t had the best luck nor have I really been incredibly successful in achieving what I want. It became hard for me to imagine myself as successful because I’d lived so much of my life assuming that bad things were going to happen to me, or that I was going to be disappointed in some way, shape or form, just based on how I had been disappointed in the past. I did the fair test rule and was stuck in a pattern where disappointment was the only outcome every single time.
As I’ve grown and especially lately as I’ve become more spiritual, more religious in a way, I realized that this simply isn’t true. Even though I have no proof of it otherwise, I can’t assume that life will continue on in the same, miserable vein just because I have no experience with real goodness. That just isn’t fair to myself or those around me. I’m young. I have so much life left to live and to assume all of it will be all bad is just — I don’t know — it’s just stupid.
This is where my fair test abilities have failed. I’ve tried something out of the ordinary once — nothing. Tried it twice — nothing. Tried it three times — nothing. Well, no one warned me that you could essentially try the same test more than three times and get inconclusive results (and I only say inconclusive because I’m not dead yet). But is that actually a reason to just give up? I don’t know. I think you have to take it on a case-by-case basis, but generally, if it’s keeping you up at night, then probably not. I honestly wish for good things and when bad things happen, I don’t want to fall back into the pattern of thinking that, of course, this is how it’s meant to be. Of course that one desire or that one goal wasn’t for me. This is the result of all these tests.
My beliefs have changed. It’s hard. My mind works against me most days, so I can’t keep a thought straight for very long, but as I actively try, I am actively improving. I want to keep believing that I am deserving of the outcomes I want, or deserving of great outcomes that I can’t even fathom because they’re so wonderful, without using my previous failures as reasons for why I’m delusional (and even if I am delusional, that still doesn’t mean I don’t deserve good things!).
I think for a long time I was just training myself to settle. It’s so ugly to even say. Like I wasn’t sure I deserved anything more than just the bare minimum. I just wanted a job that paid just enough and was somewhat within my geographical boundaries. I just wanted a guy who liked me enough to not lowkey want to be with other girls. I just wanted to be just good enough at whatever it is I aspired for. But that’s such a lazy way of living, such a lazy way of thinking.
I’m not saying this is about thinking I’m above anyone else, because I’m not. I’m just starting to think that maybe I deserve something real good. Something I probably have no concept of. Something I do have a concept of and wish for, hope for, secretly before I go to bed. Even something I have a concept of that I hope for out loud. I’m not too good for my desires and my desires are not too good for me. We’re the same. We’ll find each other, regardless of what my past experiences have taught me.
There is a mantra I say twice a day every day, and the more I say it, the more I come to believe it, fair tests aside. It is:
“The fact that I can think of my desires is proof that they’re meant to materialize.”
It gives me a lot of hope. It keeps me in faith too. I’m happy I’ve entered such a transformative stage in life and I’m really, really excited to see what it brings me.