I was a follower, never a leader.
I had low self-esteem, low self-worth. I felt ugly. I felt fat. I was miserable.
In 5th grade, I met this girl who became my best friend throughout middle school. PROBLEM? I listened to her. If she told me to JUMP, I’d ask how high. If she wanted me to do something for her, I would. If she wanted to break the rules, I was ready to do so.
I wanted to fit in.
I wanted her and others to like me, so I did what they told me to do.
In 7th grade, my so-called BFF turned on me and I let it happen. She started talking shit about me behind my back. She started to influence others to do the same and they followed along like little puppy dogs.
In 8th grade, it got worse. I remember passing her in the hall with a shirt that said, “cute” on it and she walked by laughing and saying, “nope.” I never wore that shirt ever again. That same year, she convinced our circle of friends to ignore me as we ate lunch together. They all talked amongst themselves leaving me out of the conversation and again, I let it happen. I never once stood up for myself.
I remember thinking that I wanted to, but I let fear get the best of me.
In high school, I let her dictate every move I made. We didn’t talk after middle school, but I did everything in my power to avoid her and hoped she wasn’t in ANY of my classes. Since she lived in the same neighborhood as me, I made it appoint to constantly miss the bus just so I didn’t have to face her. I know that wasn’t fair to my parents, who then had to drive me, but that was the only thing I could think of doing. Eventually, another bus added in a route near my house, so I started taking that bus instead. I felt like I could breathe again.
Though I dodged her being on the same bus as me, the next thing I had to worry about was whether or not she’d be in any of my classes.
Every year on the first day of school, I’d dread walking into class because I could not bear seeing the sight of her.
I got lucky….. until 11th grade when she was in my history class.
I told myself I was fine with it for the first few days, but really, I felt ANXIOUS, STRESSED and couldn’t stop sweating. I had to switch classes or else I was going to lose it.
All of the other 11th grade history classes were full, so instead, the only alternative was to take 12th grade history class and then the following year, I’d take 11th grade history class.
NOW, hold up! I let this girl ruin my entire schedule. I let her ruin my life. I let her get the best of me. Every time I’d see her, the nervous feeling would come over me and I wouldn’t be able to shake it off.
After high school, I only saw her once more. She came into my line at the grocery store I worked at and I hardly looked at her.
So, there you have it folks!
Since childhood, I have been a people pleaser and until recently, I hadn’t thought how much I needed to heal from the hurt, bullying and dictatorship I witnessed as a 13-year old.
I’m at a point in my life where I am NO LONGER pleasing other people. I am so done with that behavior. If you don’t like me or the things I talk about, feel free to move on. I never dealt with my emotions or feelings back then. Instead, I ran away scared and didn’t want to deal with anything head on, but now I’m ready to do so.
I need to heal myself before I work with others.
I’m going to use the following in order to heal –
- free writing
- sitting with my thoughts, feelings and emotions (no matter how painful they are)
- processing what has happened to me by writing it down
We all need to heal from something. I’m curious to hear YOUR story now that you’ve heard mine.