Because I am not black and white. Because I am gray.

The fact that I am writing this right now is a rarity. The fact that I can verbalize just about anything is a gem. I am amongst the minority in this world that has a voice. As are you. I listened to a man named Jimmie Briggs speak tonight about his worldwide campaign, Man Up, that he began to try to conquer violence against women and girls in this world. He seemed baffled when asked a simple question: Why do you do what you do?

"I do what I do because I have to."

The answer was so basic and yet it pierced me. I sat in my seat feeling like someone had finally defined me. Someone had finally given me a starting point for all that I set out to do from day to day.

Lately a lot of people email me or approach me telling me that they admire my blog and they wish they were able to do the same thing. Well my first question to them is, why don't you then? The number one blockade: I am afraid that no one will want to listen to what I have to say.

If that is what stands in your way, this fear that no one will want to read your words, then please please please squash the thought. Dwell for a moment on the fact that you are fortunate enough to have words. You have the ability to give your words to the world when so many people in this world have no means to tell a story, no skills to write a book, no rights to speak out. That is reason enough for us to use our voice, to let our minds run free, to share our stories with the world. We Can. And So We Should.

At the end of each day there is a lot of things that make us all the same. We are human. We like to listen to one another and we long to feel connected. We form kinship and bonds through story telling of broken hearts, broken journeys, broken worlds and we find the steps it takes to make brokenness beautiful.

But at the end of the day, there are more things that make us diverse. We need to share these experiences so that the world can finally change. We need to never doubt our own voices and our own stories because they will inevitably be what allows us to impact others.

I do what I do because I have to. Because I Have A Strong Voice. Because I Have A Full Heart. Because I Am Not Black And White. Because I Am Gray.

And if you still doubt that no one will want to hear your story, just come find me. I will listen.

You have words and you have a life that is unlike any other, so what stands in your way?