“The violets in the mountains have broken the rocks.” -Tennessee Williams ‘
I came across this quote when I was shopping with my mom in a store called Urban Violet not too long ago. It struck me in a take-your-breath- out type of way. (Words of affirmations is my love language okay!!!) And to say the least – I’ve been thinking about what Tennessee Williams said. And I think he might have been on to something.
The world needs more violets.
Because the world we live in is full of a lot of rocks.
Society and the media in general have created a narrative that encourages people, and especially youth, to have the mentality of “do not care about what anyone thinks of you.” And while I believe that this isn’t necessarily a bad mantra to live by, I think that it has affected my generation’s ability to think about ourselves objectively, which has lead to us developing superiority complexes toward our peers and having a lack of self-awareness. We have taken “not caring about what anyone thinks of you,” and turned it into “I don’t care how I treat people because it is my own life.” It makes us believe we are better than everyone. It makes us ugly. It turns us into rocks.
But, as Tennessee Williams says… violets (supposedly) break the rocks. Our culture needs to learn how to embrace ourselves without letting our ego get in the way of how we maintain relationships and show up in places. You are allowed to be passionate, driven, and successful. You are also allowed to be emotional, have compassion, and be happy for others. It does not have to be one or the other.
Recently, I cam across a quote, (I know I come across many), that read: “I did the being edgy and self-deprecating thing. It gets old. I want to be soft and easily impressed. I want to appreciate all the little things that make me happy the same way I’ve dwelled on every sing thing that upsets me.”
!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I want to emphasize this a billion times !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
It’s not trendy to be emotionally vulnerable or in tune with our feelings. I do not think it ever will be. But, here’s what I do think:
You have to emulate what you want to be. If you want to be happy, you have to be happy for other people. If you want to be understood, you have to listen. If you want people to be compassionate toward you, be compassionate toward others. If you are seeking love, you have love others. What we project into the world becomes our reality.
If we dwell on our failures, our lives will become surrounded by them. If we focus on the light at the end of the tunnel, our lives will be illuminated. It is all about how we respond and react to the situations thrown at us.
It is easy to let the world make us cold and bitter and ugly. Because a lot of the world is cold and bitter and ugly.
But, a lot of it is not.
The secret to a beautiful life, it to recognize the beauty in it. Easier said than done. But, we need to have hope. The future depends on it.
Because our hope inspires. It is beautiful. It might just be the closest thing we have to magic on this Earth. It is also free. And it is transformative. And it is why violets are beautiful. And violets break rocks because rocks are heavy, depressing, mean…. ugly. In short, kindness kills. (It’s vicious if you ask me).
If we could replace all of the rocks with violets, we would liberate ourselves from the shame and secrets we hold. We would be able to set those things down. And we would be able to grow… we would be able to live in a world that supports and uplifts one another, instead of being in constant competition with each other.
The world is not always full of sunshine, rainbows and happy endings.
But if we learn to respond to our failures, (and other’s failures), with compassion and empathy, instead of judgement, it will be a happier place to live. It will be happier place for our children to live.
And if we learn have empathy when someone disappoints us I think we will see the world change before our eyes.
We need to be the people we needed in our worst moments. (Regardless if these people were there for us or not). We need to show up to spaces aware of how we change the energy and how our presence affects others. We need to care about what people think of us, (to an extent), because we need people, and people need us.
Mercy and forgiveness will always be more powerful than revenge and hate. There is a lot to be said about the strength it takes to choose the first two. Our grace and our humility is what makes us beautiful.
Our pain and anger will drag us through life. Our grace and humility will carry us through it.
So, here’s to the violets.
We might just break the rocks.
Until next time.