The short answer is “yes.” All of us are quirky. And that doesn’t mean weird–just a little unique.
Kim John Payne, in his delightful book Simplicity Parenting: Using the Extraordinary Power of Less to Raise Calmer, Happier, and More Secure Kids, addresses this issue as he attempts to calm worried parents. He claims that all children are quirky, and that parents shouldn’t be in a rush to get concerned when their children display unexplainable, odd, yet harmless preferences.
That’s good news for all of us, because if all children are quirky, then we adults–who grow out of the same genetic stock–are bound to be quirky also. You see, not every eccentricity matters. In fact, it can be helpful to be eccentric. Let me explain.
I once heard a pastor talk about a business executive who came to him shortly before retiring. The executive asked for help in becoming eccentric. Bemused, the pastor asked him about the source of his concern. The businessman explained that it was his observation that others seemed to be remembered for their eccentricities when they died–that people often spoke fondly of their uniquenesses and oddities. He went on to say that he feared he was such a conventional person that when he died his grandchildren would have nothing to remember about him.
We all want to be remembered…and we don’t want to wait until we die for that to happen. Do you have quirks? It’s okay. Enjoy them unless they do damage to you or someone else. Be yourself out loud in your own quirky, loveable way. Clones are for the biology research labs…not real life.
Simplicity Parenting: Using the Extraordinary Power of Less to Raise Calmer, Happier, and More Secure Kids, Kim John Payne and Lisa M. Ross, Ballantine Books, 2010