My voice matters. I came out of the womb with something to say. My parents were typical New Yorkers, and I inherited their inability to sugarcoat or bite my tongue. That never changed, but along the way, I realized the cost of living one’s truth and speaking your mind. The alternative never appealed to me. Whenever I tried to keep my thoughts to myself, especially in a confrontational situation, it felt like I had swallowed a grenade after pulling the pin.
Three years ago, I began writing more and speaking on social media, and one thing continued to plague my mind. Why would anyone want to hear my story? I felt an immense amount of guilt because if I told of something traumatic that happened to me, it somehow competed with the more traumatic stories of others.
That is not the case. Most humans crave connection. Some feel relief by telling their stories, and others feel comfort from hearing them. We are all trying to navigate this crazy world, and it helps when you don’t travel down this road alone. It is not a competition of trauma. The validity of our feelings does not become negated simply because someone else went through something worse.
Today was long, so I will keep this post short and sweet. Don’t silence yourself because you believe your voice should stay in the shadows to shine a light on someone else. There is enough room in this world for every voice, and each one is valid. Say what you need or want to say, and never apologize.