“If you haven’t walked in someone else’s shoes, it’s difficult to know the fit, so be kind and compassionate.” – Heather Wolf. This quote is so true and although I always try my best to be kind and compassionate and I am a very empathetic person, it is truly not possible to know exactly how a person feels until you have been in their shoes.
Earlier this year one of my friends was in a situation and she was describing what it felt like to be in that situation and how she reacted etc. I listened and empathized with her, she explained her feelings and at that time I remember being compassionate towards her, yet not understanding exactly how or why she felt that way. Everyone is different and responds to situations differently, I listened and supported her. After our conversation I found myself pondering how I would react and feel if I were in the same situation. It was not even close to how she felt, yet ironically a few months later I found myself in the same exact situation as her with the same exact feelings as she had described!
The takeaway from this post is that we cannot possibly know what it feels like to be in a situation if we are not actually in it. We can guess and think of how we would feel, but it is not possible to know until then. I was shocked that I reacted completely different than what I had imagined that I would. I am a very open-minded and non-judgmental person, yet this was very eye-opening for me!