Jason's comment on my post about my averageness made me feel like it needed a follow-up. To risk becoming a priest or religious is something special, something remarkable, as is trusting not only God but another human being enough to enter into a sacramental marriage. The same goes for any vocation that we take up in response to the grace of God.
Each human person is a unique creation. Since grace builds on nature, adapted to and blended to it, as it were (the humanity of Christ!), the grace of each person is also unique and unrepeatable.
So, it is true what your kindergarten teacher told you: you are special. Just by being ourselves we are special, and especially by responding to the unique grace and paths that are ours in the Lord.
On the other hand, we must not take our specialness in the sense that the world gives. It does not make us any more important or remarkable than anyone else. It is not an excuse to think of my needs or desires or security as any more pressing than anyone else's.
This latter sense of being special, of being special in relation to others, is the sense against which we must begin to do penance. This is why my favorite anti-hero, Tyler Durden, drilled into each of his disciples the teaching that they were not "a special and unique snowflake!"
We are special because of the perpetual newness and freshness of grace, not because of anything that we can say is our own.