Sticking Out When You Want to Fit In

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I don’t have big ears. Actually my ears are pretty normal in size. They’re the kind of ears that you wouldn’t even notice unless I tried to lure you in with fancy, sparkling earrings and things. So when I was growing up my ears were never the brunt of giggly adolescent kids.

But I did stick out even when I wanted to fit in. But in a different way. The way I dressed, the way I spoke, the things I ate, the way I wasn’t allowed to go to some of the places or participate in some of the activities that my friends were allowed too. My mom was quite conservative. And we were island immigrants making a new life and home trying to live the American dream.

Springtime in Downtown Washington, DC

All these years later, I realize that I was never born to fit in. I was always meant to stand out. That’s why I connected to with new remake of the Dumbo movie in so many ways.

From the time Dumbo was born he couldn’t help but stick out. In fact he was teased because his ears were much bigger than his body…unlike other elephants. He was different. Eventually Dumbo realized that his difference was indeed a major strength. His superpower.

Dumbo combined his unique gifts and abilities to impact and entertain like no other. And that’s exactly what I got to do 2 weeks ago in front a crowd of 300, including my very own nine year old daughter.

Standing in front of that crowd, I stood affirmed in my unique gifts and abilities. I realized that the fact I stick out allows me to have a bigger impact. And just like Dumbo eventually realized that he didn’t need the feather to fly, I realized that what I was born with was enough.

The story of Dumbo is not new. Although this movie was originally released in 1941, the modern remake will help new audiences fall in love with Dumbo all over again and take flight in dreams and aspirations.

Dumbo is rated PG and is great for kids and adults alike. Find out more about the movie and why it’s a a good choice for a family friendly film.

Oh yeah, one more quick thing… Don’t be scared to stick out.

Women's empowerment keynote speaker
Keynote speech (March 2019)
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