Think back to your freshmen year of high school.
A plethora of emotions must come to mind. Everything from overly dramatized fights with your best friend, getting picked on by upper classmen, new class schedules to adjust to, cafeteria food that never got any better; let's all just agree that freshmen year was an awkward year for most, probably almost embarrassing.
Now, if you are like me, I can't recall a lot of my freshmen year, and it was only a few years ago. But, picture this: a tall, lanky girl, not girly by any means, kinda tom boyish with dark stringy hair, never knew how to apply make up correctly and certainly never knew what to do with her hair, never had anything interesting to talk about, and just her mere presence was awkward. Yeah, that was me. Despite all my tragic flaws as a young high school girl, I still managed to make friends with a few people outside my small, suffocating bubble.. Keep in mind that I never knew how awkward I was until a few years later when I looked back on this particular year.
Before I go any further, however, I must engage you with this side note. There was this guy; he was a senior. He was in a band, a vocalist at that. He was gorgeous. I still remember his black hair swooping down in front of his face with the rest of it pulled back into a beenie. Did I mention he wore skinny jeans...everyday? Yeah, I thought he was perfect, and I openly admit that I had the world's biggest crush on him. I was even lucky enough to have lunch with him everyday, and even though we were friends and had casual conversations occasionally, I still figured he didn't know I existed. So, like most freshmen girls I presume, I spent most of my freshmen year crazy over some guy I hardly knew.
But anyways, I'm older now, and I never guessed my life would turn out the way it has so far. Looking back at the rest of my years in high school, I know I blossomed into an attractive and intelligent young lady. Participating in fashion shows, photo shoots, not to mention being top 10% of my class, those on the outside would see myself as a well rounded girl with a bright future. But I was such a bitch. A stuck up bitch for that. I was picked on a lot when I was in middle school, and even a bit my freshmen year; it was my turn to do the picking. I made fun of people, and went around with the whole "I don't care" attitutde. My personality ruined a lot of things for me including my relationship with my parents. I got into drugs and alcohol starting my sophomore year. I lost myself those years. I didn't know who I was anymore.
Thank goodness I graduated, that's for sure. In the past few months, I have gained a new perspective of life. I'm so much more appreciative of life and all the wonderful people in it. I still have my bet friend since freshmen year, and we are closer now than ever, and I have a new appreciation for my parents. But the hardest thing I have learned is that there are people who have it worse off than me. It's called empathy. I see it everyday, the struggles people carry upon their shoulders. I just find myself wanting to reach out to those people, but never knowing how.
Oh, and remember skinny jeans boy? Yeah, I live with him and have been with him for a while now. Funny story. Turns out he had a crush on me too. He was just 18 and I was, well, a freshmen. After he graduated, we lost touch for about a year and half. (This is the only time I will thank social networking sites.) We reconnected our friendship whenever I learned he started tattooing; I used to go down to the shop he works at all the time my senior year. But in a way it's good that we never admitted our feelings for each other back in high school. We both had way too much stuff we had to go through first in order to be the people we are today. We like to think of it as four years in the making. (:
So the point I'm trying to make I suppose is that everything happens for a reason. I am a firm believer in that despite my obvious lack of any sort of religious following. (Which is another subject for another time.) It took going through all those ups and downs of high school and even the struggles I face today to bring me to the person I am today. I had to be the awkward girl my freshmen year inorder to become the bitchy, who gives a fuck girl the other three years. From that, I began to work and really got a first hand glance at the struggles of the world. This revelation brought upon new prespectives, and new understandings I never before understood. Looking at the good in life is so much less exhausting then looking at the bad. This newly found optimism allows me to just breath, and boy is it a great feeling.