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Finding my shine.

Where is it?

By WENNA WILLIEPublished 4 months ago 4 min read
Finding my shine.
Photo by Emiliano Vittoriosi on Unsplash

Why can't I be great like others? That question buzzes around my head like a mosquito you just can't swat away. It's like a mystery I'm trying to solve while navigating the rollercoaster of life. Always feeling like the odd one out, peeking at greatness from the outskirts, I wonder if I'll ever find my own spot among the stars.

It all kicked off in Kota Kinabalu, a city where dreams seemed farther away than Kuala Lumpur. Growing up, I was surrounded by tales of people who made it big, leaving a trail of accomplishments for the world to see. Teachers loved to point at them like, "Look, be like them!" It was like a cool story that I really, really wanted to be a part of.

As a kid, I'd stare at the night sky, picturing myself hanging out with the constellations. Each star, a high-five to someone's greatness. The yearning to be up there sizzled inside me, fueling every step I took. But as time passed, my journey twisted and turned, and those stars remained stubbornly out of reach.

High school felt like a talent show where everyone had their own special act. Melissa aced every test without breaking a sweat, like she had a secret hotline to Einstein. John was the sports superstar, acing every game while I tripped over my own feet. And Sarah, oh boy, she painted like the world was her canvas, turning walls into masterpieces. I just wished I had a talent like that.

"Why can't I be great like others?" That question turned into a little voice that followed me everywhere, like a mischievous shadow. It messed with my head, making me doubt my skills and drowning out any tiny voice saying, "You got this!"

Graduation was like a ticking time bomb, and university was the unknown territory I was about to step into. I felt like a contestant on a talent show, but I was afraid my only talent was spilling coffee on myself. The question got louder, drumming in my ears like a catchy but annoying tune. Why can't I be great like others?

In my quest for an answer, I threw myself into all sorts of activities, hoping to stumble onto greatness. I joined clubs, became an athlete became a leader, and even tried my hand at artsy stuff. But with each try, that shadowy doubt grew, swallowing any tiny win I managed. I started to believe greatness had a VIP section, and my invite got lost in the mail.

Then, during a serious low, I discovered an ancient bookstore, hidden like a treasure chest in a forgotten part of town. The smell of old paper hit me like a warm hug as I creaked open the door. Roaming through the dusty aisles, a raggedy book caught my eye. Its title, "Embracing Shadows," sounded like a cool adventure waiting to happen.

I found a cozy corner, cracked open the book, and met Elijah Blackwood, the wisdom-dropping author. He spoke about finding beauty in shadows, those unknown areas in our lives that might be hiding our true awesome selves. His words were like a soothing balm for the bruises my doubts had left.

As I got lost in the book, my journey started to look different. Those shadows that haunted me weren't roadblocks but secret passages to awesome discoveries. The question transformed from a pity party to a challenge, daring me to embrace the unknown and find greatness where I least expected it.

Armed with this newfound wisdom, I tackled college like a superhero. Instead of running away from my goof-ups, I high-fived them. I picked classes that made me go, "Hmm, interesting!" instead of "Will this impress someone?" I joined groups that matched my vibes, not what society said I should vibe with.

With time, I figured out that greatness wasn't a one-size-fits-all deal but a personalized journey. I rocked at things that spoke to my soul, creating a groove that was totally mine. The shadows, once spooky, became my buddies on this quest of self-discovery.

In my senior year, on the brink of graduation, I looked back and realized I had become great in my own quirky way. The question that haunted me, "Why can't I be great like others?" turned into a proud shout of individuality. I was great, not in spite of my shadows, but because of them.

Life, like the night sky, is a canvas always expanding. The stars of greatness aren't stuck in preset patterns; they pop up naturally, each person a star in their unique constellation. Looking back on my journey, the answer wasn't a finish line but a transformation—from doubting myself to celebrating my quirks, from asking why I can't be great to knowing I can. I am. And just like the stars, my greatness shines brightest because I dared to explore the shadows.

Teenage yearsSchoolChildhood

About the Creator


I am devoted to cultivating a love for language and literature. Wordsmith at heart, I find solace in writing and joy in sharing my thoughts. A voracious reader and internet explorer, constantly seeking knowledge and inspiration.

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