When You Feel Like You Don’t Belong

Have you ever felt like you didn’t belong? That you weren’t meant to be here? That for some inexplicable reason you should not have been put on earth? I had this feeling. I’ve had this feeling … a lot and I’ve had this feeling often. For some reason, I was put here but somehow someone made a mistake somewhere along the line! I don’t know why, or how, I have felt this way, nor have I ever had anyone explain to me that this is actually normal! Or rather, that this feeling is not abnormal. I am not from space! It is not because there’s something wrong with me, or that I am strange, that I am broken, or that I’m from another world. It has nothing to do with that. The truth is that many people feel this. It is totally normal to have this kind of feeling: to feel like you don’t belong, like you don’t matter, that you aren’t wanted.

I don’t have the solution. I don’t have the answers, but I do know that; for me anyways, things got easier as the years progressed. Now that I am going to be 50 years old, – I am actually going to be half a century old – I can say that I finally feel comfortable in my own skin!  (Well, somewhat)
Some say that it has to do with perspective. I concur. It is perspective and it’s about setting goals for yourself … so that this “feeling of not belonging” can be put to rest. We don’t know how life is going to change when we are older, or what’s going to happen a moment from now, so we feel insecure about the future. We don’t know what’s going to happen and that makes us feel insecure! THAT is the keyword: insecure.  All of us just want to feel like we are a part of something. It’s normal to feel like the world is just watching you while you are left alone and confused but it doesn’t mean that you are unnoticed.

Did you know that there are things that you can do to make your life a bit better?  I am here to tell you that it is up to you to find out what works for you. Some swear that drinking or doing drugs will help. I would not recommend this because it alters the state of mind that you are in. It puts you into a state of mind in which you are no longer in the position to make decisions. It is not the ideal moment to make decisions. It is not the ideal moment to see what the world has to offer. Instead, you can decide to make healthy choices, to try new things, and to see if those things that you try will make the difference in your life.

Let’s say that I am scared of heights. Ok, I will admit it … I don’t like heights. I am not going to be jumping out of a plane anytime soon but I can also say that I’m scared of many other things! So the list of things that I’m scared of: heights, water, darkness, etc., there has to be some solution. There has to be something that I can try, there has to be something that can help me feel strong enough to get through that wall and to get to the other side!

That is exactly what I’ve done. Let me explain; I am scared of water so I never learned to swim. Since I am scared of the water, it means that I will not go into the ocean unless I have my feet firmly planted on the sand. During one of my vacations, I experienced an amazing thing! I was in Maui; which is one of the Hawaiian islands, and I decided to take a snorkelling boat trip. I know I don’t swim, but my intention was to stay on the boat at all times. While in Maui I would highly recommend going on a helicopter ride, going on a snorkelling trip, or going on a hike. There are so many things to do! Tell me, how someone who doesn’t know how to swim ends up going in the water? It didn’t happen at first; however, I did end up in the water!  At our first stop everyone got in the water to snorkel and I stayed on the boat. Everyone called out for me to get in as well, but it was to no avail. I figured that I was safe on the boat, and that I would just stay on deck for the extent of the trip.

We continued onward towards the next stop. When we least expected it we witnessed a whale breaching the water, followed by a bunch of spinner dolphins swimming alongside our boat! It’s as if nature was telling me that I definitely should get into the water so I can see amazing things. The second stop came quickly and; again, everybody got off the boat to snorkel. They asked me “are you going to get in this time”? Before I could say no, I was pushed towards the flotation devices. I ended up wearing armbands, a life jacket, a boogie board, and a couple of pool noodles! I was scared but I jumped into the water anyway.

It was like another world had opened up. Suddenly I felt like I belonged there, and like I was a part of something. I felt comfortable, excited, and very awake.  I tried to propel myself into the water as much as I could.   I wanted to go deeper but I just couldn’t.  Trust me, for someone who doesn’t swim, actually being in the middle of the ocean is amazing enough but to then see different kinds of fish right there, in their natural habitat is simply superb.  I even spotted a sea turtle!  He swam right up to me!

By far, that was the most amazing experience I have ever had in my life.  Had I not felt the encouragement of others I never would have had the courage to get into the water.  Since then every time I go away on vacation snorkelling is a part of it.  That first experience opened my eyes and it has given me the courage to try other things. I hope I have the courage to continue to try new things.  I want to continue to better myself and to push myself to learn new things.  I also hope that my desire to improve myself and my desire to try new things somehow is passed down to my daughter so that she sees that her life is limitless!  It’s better that she learn this as young as possible so that she can actually live her life and enjoy it.  Live and learn.

Tell me, what do you do to stay interested in life?

9 thoughts on “When You Feel Like You Don’t Belong

  1. Yeah I have a fear of water as well (nightmares even) but I did snorkel in PR when we went and I had one of those things around my waist that kept me afloat..funny thing is, hubby who does know how to swim was scared he couldnt keep afloat because he’s used to swimming pools not moving sea water

  2. I have always felt like an outsider. In my family, I always felt like the black sheep. They pressured you into having professional jobs. I enjoyed being a pizza delivery driver. They believed in making a lot of money. That was never my goal. It was important to know the “right” people. I worked with the homeless. In their eyes I never measured up. It took me reaching 50 years of age, to realize I will never get approval from them and it does not matter. I live the life I want to and if they don’t like it, it is their problem!

  3. Water is my biggest fear. I never learned how to swim so drowning is my fear. If I ever won a cruise, I would most likely give it away because i don’t go on the water. Not afraid of flying so as long as my feet are in the air or on the ground I am fine.

  4. This time of year is harder for me, less hours at work, feeling like the rest of the crew treats us differently etc (Well they do treat us differently, they expect the 50+ ladies to stay and do 2hrs of OT while the 20 somethings walk out at exactly 8hrs)

  5. Sometimes I’ve felt so much like you did – in being the outsider! More when I was in elementary/high school and now I march to my own drum 🙂 Such a great experience to see a whale breach for the first time and to swim with dolphins. We went on a whale watching tour in Victoria BC and swam with dolphins earlier this year in Punta Cana.

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