Today someone I know told me I am one of their role models.
To them I am someone they look up to and respect, and this shocked me. I had never considered myself in any serious manner to be someone worthy of being a role model. I look in the mirror and see someone who’s made countless mistakes, someone who is deeply flawed and is the very definition of “mortal man,” or perhaps “mortal dragon” is more apt. But a role model? No.
It took me most of the day to process that, and I am still processing it, mulling over what people could possibly see in me. But in doing so I have realized that like with art, I will always see every imperfection, every flaw. What I see looking in the mirror is perhaps not what everyone sees. Perhaps that is the lesson that should be taken from most things: our perspective is warped by our own desire to strive for perfection, a goal that is endlessly unreachable.
Perhaps the best thing we can do is to just keep striving to better ourselves, and in turn continue to be the most genuine version of ourselves we can be. And maybe, just maybe, I should learn to not focus as much on how other people might perceive me, but instead how I perceive myself and let the pieces outside of that fall as they may.