Vulnerability is Strength

Out of your vulnerabilities will come your strength.

Okay, secret time. This is something I never wanted to tell many people, but I recently learned a big life lesson in this field so I thought it was fitting to share.

I have a tattoo, which I find quite embarrassing and try to hide. Although there is a story behind it. So, hear me out and I will tell you what it is all about…

I’m a highly sensitive, emotional person and I always have been. I cry when I’m happy, I cry when I’m sad, I even cry when someone else is sad. When I was in high school, I went through a tough time - like most people at that age, I presume - but I cried… I cried a lot. The problem here was, I couldn't hold my tears back until I got home, if I was upset I would cry and I really didn’t ever see anything wrong with crying in front of people.

It wasn’t until I started getting teased for crying that I began to hate myself for it, why couldn't I just hold it back? I’m so embarrassing, why am I so weak? I would have people come up to me in the hallways just to tell me that a girl in the year above me started crying and while she was crying she said, “I don’t want to be a Kaily Smith”  - now I didn’t even know this girl, this hurt my feelings big time clearly, as I still remember it.

I hated myself, all I wanted was to be strong, to be able to carry my own pain and the pain of others without it being emotionally crippling. I wanted to build a forcefield around myself so that I could no longer feel. So, from the age of 13-18, this feeling stuck around, however, I never became any stronger - in terms of less crying. Each school year meant new emotional experiences and in high school, we know it is full of those, good and bad.

As soon as I turned 18, I made a reckless, spur of the moment decision, to get a tattoo. I was 18so I could do what I want, right? So I grabbed a girlfriend and we went to the tattoo parlour. At the time, I did back out however my friend turned to me and said, “we didn’t come all the way down here for you to back out,” so I pulled myself together and I got a small… Get ready for it… Chinese symbol meaning “strength,” tattooed on my body in hopes that someday I will find that strength.

This year, I met somebody who to this day is still very dear to me. This person, however, was going through some very dark times. Upon this journey, I realized that my feelings and strong emotions were something of a gift. You see, without my emotions, I wouldn't have the empathy I did, I would not have cared enough for this person to want to help them in any way I could and I would not have the love of friendship to be able to give them.

I realized now that emotions are a strength, they are not a weakness, they’re a superpower. I am able to feel the pain of not only myself, but of others, which allows me to help uplift them. So, you may be told that crying, or laughing or feeling makes you vulnerable, but I have now learnt that out of your vulnerabilities comes your strength and this is something that you should never let anyone take away from you.

Love always, Kails xx