I don’t know that it ever changes—the need to fit in. In one way or another, I think we all long for it. We want to be part of something. To be accepted. To be celebrated just the way that we are.
I’ve had a few conversations lately with some women that I think the world of. They couldn’t be more different from one another. They are in various phases of life with a variety of dreams and hopes and expectations. Each one of these women is remarkable in every sense of the word. They are confident and truly beautiful in spirit and mind and body. But as I’ve talked with them, I’ve found what I think to be true for all of us—that despite our attempts at fitting in, we stand out just the same.
Standing out isn’t a bad thing. Sometimes, though, doesn’t it feel like it is? That as Latter-day Saint women, we only fit into our families, congregations, communities, and social circles if we think or act or look a certain way? But I don’t think that’s the case. In fact, Sister Patricia Holland once said that “the Lord uses us because of our unique personalities and differences rather than in spite of them.”
I believe that perhaps one of the greatest ways He uses our differences is to make His work go forward, and there’s something thrilling in knowing that He sees our divine potential in that way. This being said, I don’t think it’s easy to be different; sometimes, it can be rather hard and even lonely. But I find comfort in the fact that if we’re all different, then none of us are alone in it because we are all being different together.
So here are a few of my thoughts about how each of us are different in our own way. None of us may be exactly alike. But that’s exactly why God needs women like us.