God Gave Me the Strength

I never really had many friends in elementary or middle school, and 7th-8th grade were the peak of my distress. I had always been the teachers' pet, with frizzy hair, buck teeth, and glasses. did often did not feel comfortable in social situations. I had no more than 2 close friends, and I did not fit in anywhere by any means. I was constantly made fun of for my looks, and was often called annoying, stupid, ugly, weird, etc...you know, the classics. In 7th grade, one of my friends started to hate me..so much so that she started a club against me. On top of that, I had 3 boys ask me out as a joke within the span of 2 months. Though I said no to all of them, I was called a whore for having multiple "boyfriends," though I had never had a boyfriend in my life. In 8th grade, I was put down on a daily basis on my school bus. I would walk to my house crying every day. Then, naturally, when I stood up for myself, one of the girls who made fun of me daily would muster up some fake tears so she would have a sob story for her mother. Her mom then called my mom, and I was accused of doing everything that the other kids did to me, and I got all of the consequences for their actions, and no one believed me when I said it was them. My best friend even joined in out of fear that she would get bullied if she stood up for me.

I often thought of ways to hurt myself, run away, just generally escape the life I was living. I never did, though, and the only thing that kept me from any destructive action was the idea that God would be disappointed in me. Of all things. Though I was raised a Catholic and went to a Catholic school, I was not close to God..I saw Him as part of my education, not a friend or influence.

I am now stronger than ever. I am now at a public high school due to financial issues from my parents' divorce, and I have tons of friends. I have also found a release in arts--drama, singing, and drawing. I have gained a confidence that I never expected myself to have, and because it is clear that I don't care what people think, people have stopped making fun of me all together. I also got contacts and braces (which have been off for a little over a year), and now feel more confident physically as well.

I compare my life to that of a butterfly. You start as a caterpillar--not knowing your purpose, just trudging along eating your leaves and doing what you feel you're supposed to do. Then the time comes along where something surrounds you so completely that it holds you back from the outside world, and it is how and when you break out of this surrounding that proves and determines your strength as the new beautiful person you have become because of such a closure.

I am now a butterfly, given strength and vision by God, and I am now enjoying life more and more every day.

My advice to everyone being bullied is that it is very difficult to maintain an heir of confidence and it is even harder to hold your ground. Just remember, that you are only in your cocoon, and you have it inside of you to break out. It will take time and it will take strength, but it will be all worth it to prove them wrong. You have to believe that they are wrong. We are more than the names we are called, and we are more than the caterpillars we used to be. Stay strong, stay confident, and keep believing.

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