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The Critics Were (Somewhat) Right. Thank Your Critics For Making You Think

The critics were (somewhat) right,

And (now) so am I.

When I take who I was

And see who I am,

I think back to how affronted or hurt I was by criticism years ago.

What I considered to be facile judgments would wound me deeply.

Criticism felt like rejection.

It burned slowly like an acid.

But an interesting thing has taken place with age.

I now realize that some of what my critics said was wrong,

And in other cases, they really did have a point.

The critics were (somewhat) right.

In fact, today I agree with some of what they said,

Though I could not see it at the time.

Some meant to hurt, some meant to help,

And others were just looking for something to say

to fill the air between us.

I didn't agree with them then,

But now there are parts I agree with,

Upon consideration and covered by the patina of wisdom

That forms with time.

Their motives, as time moves on,

really don’t matter as much as the process of becoming.

Thank you, critics, for helping me to think.

Perhaps then, I too made facile judgments.

But who I am today,

Is the product of the effects of criticism and praise.

And getting past each

To find the truth.

And it's not the criticism that endures,

But the truth.

We cannot condemn the words of those who do not know us.

Until we truly know ourselves

And surpass who we were,

And love the promise of what we still can be.

Criticism, true and false

Valid and gratuitous

Is just the friction that is the abrasive polish,

That helps us to shine.

My skin didn’t get thicker,

My heart just got bigger,

Because I know that the story is still being written

And edited every day.

The critics were (somewhat) right,

And (now) so am I.

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