I have a good friend who, a long time ago, gave me a book. It's called, "Because I Love You". (It's by Max Lucado, and it's FABULOUS. Read it.) She wrote this quote in the front cover: “You may think, who am I to be gorgeous and talented and wonderful? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your shrinking small doesn’t serve the world.” --Marianne Willamson
For a long time, I shrunk. I shrunk small, hoping that my talent and natural ability would be enough to get me through life. But then, once upon a time, Chamber orchestra had horrible (and I mean horrible) audience behavior during solos. And Mr. Beck gave us this huge talk on how we were better than that. He was right, of course—we are much better than that. I had been hiding in the back of the section for way too long. WHAT WAS WRONG WITH ME?!
Answer: I was shrinking small.
I had forgotten the reason I loved orchestra so much. Yes, it’s tons of fun. Yes, a lot of my friends do it. But you know why I started orchestra in the first place? Because I wanted to. Because I loved the cello. Because every time I sat down to play my instrument, I loved it. I have no idea when practicing became a chore, but the day we got that lecture, I decided to change. I decided to stop shrinking small and just be gorgeous and talented and wonderful. Because who am I not to be?
I will forever love Elton John and Tim Rice for writing the musical Aida. One of my favorite lines from the show is, "Nothing is an accident, we are free to have it all. We are what we want to be, it's in ourselves to rise or fall." I know that this is true. Sometimes we feel like shrinking small. Sometimes we feel less than what we are. But why? We can be what we want to be. It's in OURSELVES to rise or fall.
Please, stop shrinking small. The world needs people who aren't afraid to let their light shine.