Hello, my inter-friends!
When you’re watching t.v. or listening to music, do you sometimes find yourself wondering what those people were like in high school, or, am I the only one who does this? I usually come to the conclusion that whoever I’m focusing on was probably one of the cool kids, if not the most popular all together. After all, they have to be cool to do what they do, right? As I get further into this crazy music industry, I’m finding that I need to change my assumptions. I can take the stage with just as much confidence as the next performer and I was, and still am, the biggest geek I know. Back-story time…!
I grew up in a very small town. Our school building was over 100 years old, and with some additions over the years, held all grades, K-12. Our community was so small that we consolidated with the next town over when I was in the 7th grade, and my graduating class was still under 80 students! All that to say that the kids you started Kindergarten with were the ones you graduated with… You were stuck with each other, for better or for worse. This worked out well for some, but for reasons I can only guess, I was labeled a geek from day 1. This was my label for the next 13 years. So, tell-all confessional… I was literally the one the rest of the class would single out to make fun of, sometimes all at once. This led to depression and self esteem issues, some of which I still deal with today. I’m not sharing this to garner sympathy, though, just the opposite… This is a redemption story!
Some may be wondering why I would choose to reveal this painfully awkward part of my history. Apart from a few who may be able to put the pieces together and actually remember me from school, most people would never guess that I used to be the geek in the corner with her nose in a book just trying to stay invisible. So, why out myself, so to speak? The way I see it, I have 3 options available to me…
1. I could take the approach of “what’s done is done, and talking about it won’t change anything.”. While this may work for some, I found that those old demons will still rear their ugly heads and influence my world view. If I confront them, and share this, it robs them of their power over me, and it may end up helping someone else who’s going through the same torment.
2. I could forever torture myself with the memory of past bullying, never allowing myself to stop being a victim. This is actually just another form of self-abuse, and ends up in the same place as the last option.
3. I could accept that my past, while painful and humiliating, will always be part of who I am. I am the sum of my experiences, both good and bad, so rather than pity myself for past hardships, I can learn from them, forgive those who hurt me, move on, and help others.
I’ve obviously chosen option #3.
“We must develop and maintain the capacity to forgive. He who is devoid of the power to forgive is devoid of the power to love. There is some good in the worst of us, and some evil in the best of us. When we discover this, we are less prone to hate our enemies.” -Martin Luther King, Jr.
Lots of Love