Friday, September 28, 2007

What do you believe?

What if our sense of identity wasn’t so much tied to what other people thought of us, but what we believed about ourselves? Too often we allow our own self-worth to be defined by what others think of us – case in point: the child who begins to believe he is bad because his parents continually tell him so. What a surprise when he grows up to fulfill their expectations.

I know that the entire 15 years I’ve lived here, the following two tenets surface again and again – they both raise my ire - the first one, proclaimed by those who live elsewhere, the second, a complaint from those who live here:
Albert County is full of rednecks.
If you were not born in Albert County, you will always be an outsider.
If you hear something often and long enough you begin to believe it, whether it is true or not.

Do we have any more ‘rednecks’ or troublemakers than any other area? I seriously doubt it.

Do born and bred Albert County folk think less of those who were not born here? Most small towns do have a ‘historical hierarchy’, but I’ve always been made to feel welcome – right from the moment I moved here and my next door neighbour offered to help us move furniture, then another invited me to a ladies Christmas pot-luck.

I respect those who remain in a community through generations; they are our anchors to a very colourful past. But, I also belong here – I am part of Albert County’s present and future - and there is no one who can tell me any different.

We have a wonderful mix of people in this county. We have artists and craftspeople, environmentalists and tradespeople. We have teachers and nurses and doctors and lawyers. We have boat builders and house builders. We have entrepreneurs and farmers and fishermen. We come from all places in the world and backgrounds – just like our French and German, English and Scottish and Irish ancestors - but have one thing in common. Albert County.

So, I’m curious…What does Albert County believe about itself? Are we ready, willing and able to stand up and define ourselves by what we know is true - and to show this through our actions - or will we allow others to tell us who we are?

Our community is taking steps to become healthy in body. Why not become healthy in spirit as well?

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