We didn’t have any pets while growing up.
Well, we had two goldfish, Pebbles and Bam Bam. My brother came home one day from school and asked my dad why one of them was swimming upside down. They were fun, but I never got to have a dog like I always dreamed of. Someday I will, when I make enough space and time to nurture and love it. My extended family highly preferred dogs over cats. So growing up, I was never exposed to cats. I thought I didn’t like them and that “cat people” were “weird.”
A few years ago, a friend of mine got a cat and I got to spend some time with her. I quickly learned how fun, mellow, affectionate, and just… cool!… cats can be. This may sound so simple for people who’ve always loved cats, but this was a big breakthrough for me. It was a major life lesson because I realized how WRONG I can be about things. I learned that lack of exposure does not mean I dislike something; it merely means that I haven’t encountered it yet!
I love using my mind to explore and my body to play in this world. I’ll try anything once. I love eating new food and playing new sports, because as an adult, I get to expose myself to as much as I want in this lifetime! I get to challenge my current mindset, much like that cat experience, and discover what I genuinely do and don’t like. And tastes change over time. It feels so exciting and liberating to show myself a whole new world as often and as deeply as I want.
It is exhilarating and brings me so much joy to try new things. I would much rather travel to a new country than revisit an old one, but I believe it is worthwhile to reexamine old thoughts and beliefs. A man cannot step into the same river twice. I am an ever-evolving woman, so seeing my old thoughts through my “new”/current eyes grants me a different perspective. I do not have a green thumb to save my life, but I imagine my brain to be like pushing a wheelbarrow through the yard: take the same path enough times, and it gets worn in and comfortable. My old feelings on cats were wrong, but I was so used to them that I assumed it to be fact and didn’t even think to question it.
How many of my current beliefs are just beliefs, and are things that will be challenged and fine tuned as I continue to grow? Probably most, if not all, of them. I actually HOPE I’m proven wrong, much like I love being uncomfortable, because that will signify that I am adapting, evolving, growing, and unleashing my most true and authentic self.
What could you be wrong about? How can you expose yourself to new things?