Putting the Red Pants On
I was 5 years old and I attended school up the road. I walked with a small group of girls, who would come to meet me outside of my home. Winter was ending, with a warm breeze in the air. There was some ice left in random dirty piles on the side of the road. This particular morning, I recall three girls that came to meet me. I was a few minutes late, so they were waiting for me outside by the time I got there. One of the girls pointed at me and started laughing. Another girl said 'why are you still wearing your snow pants'? I wasn't. I told them as much, but the damage had already been done. The rejection was insurmountable, being five years old.
My snow pants were bright red. The pants I was wearing that day were also bright red, I believe corduroy. I still had a warm jacket on, but it was the first day I remember not wearing my snow pants, and feeling that warm refreshing breeze against my ankles. It was a really nice feeling as I was walking out to meet them, a feeling that quickly disappeared as I lingered behind them towards school.
In that moment, I decided that I was going to be unique. It became one of my strong suits, something that served me well in life but also held me back. Like a facade, being unique was something I could hide behind, fall back on, call upon. It became a very strong muscle, and people in my life knew me as such. Being unique allowed me to hide and protect the authentic piece of me that was hurt that day, the part of me that loved wearing red pants. The part of me that was not afraid to express myself.
Putting the red pants on, both figuratively and literally, has been a helluva process. It is one that has shown up multiple times within my journey of self development over the past decade. As I have made the connections, and dug deeper into what's really going on, I have become more and more comfortable with putting them on. It directly correlates to me showing up, sharing my care bear stare, and showing my true colours.
Do you have any 'red pants' hiding in the back of your closet?