One time in middle school something so horrific happened to me, it’s almost too embarrassing to record here. But, for the sake of this post and a little push from Louise (AKA Sprinkle of Glitter, my pretend BFF), I’ve learned that recording embarrassing moments is a form of acceptance. It’s also important to laugh at yourself every once and a while.
You see, I had this notebook I shared with my friend. Let’s just say it was a place where we wrote all the details about our non-existent 7th grade love lives. Recipe for disaster, no?
In this notebook we would doodle about our wanna-bee lovers and create fake nicknames for them (“Lion” sticks out in my mind...shiver). And unfortunately, this notebook was placed into the hands of the wrong person. I don’t even know how it came to be in her possession. All I know is that shortly between science class and lunch, the entire girl’s locker room had seen this embarrassing notebook confessing my love for multiple boys at the time. Whether she stole it from my possession, or I left it somewhere by accident, she had this notebook and passed it around from girl to girl in the locker room.
The worst part?
The girl who I shared this notebook with was in the locker room and didn’t do anything to stop this form of middle school cruelty. She watched everybody make fun of me. Her name wasn’t mentioned in the notebook, only my own. She didn’t admit to anything, but stepped back and watched the whole thing unfold.
Even as I type this, I want to be angry and resentful, and it stirs up a feeling so deep in the pit of my stomach that it is like the day it happened. It’s the feeling I got when eventually the girls put the notebook in the lost and found, and I had to go pick it up there.
I cried so much that week, I didn’t even know what to do with myself. It seemed like such a huge issue at the time, that I didn’t think for a second that everybody would forget about it in a matter of days. That something else would pop up on the rumor-mill which overshadowed my love notebook. The thing about these potentially traumatic and embarrassing situations is that in the moment, we don’t stop to think to the future. What’s happening in that single moment is the worst. Thing. Ever. And we don’t ever know how we are going to overcome it.
|This is what I thought it would be like ^^^|
It’s similar to when you’re an adult and you lose a job. Or when your high school boyfriend breaks up with you. In the moment, these events are terrible and horrific. You may even want to dig a hole and hide there for a little bit without acknowledging the existence of anyone else. The thing we do not consider is that these moments pass. They. Pass. They become insignificant in the grand scheme of middle school, of schooling in general, and of life. So even though thinking about this particular event makes me cringe inside, the moment has passed. And, there’s always a lesson.
This moment was crucial in my development as a teenage girl. It forced me to question the people who I associated with and if they were a good influence on me. Turns out, they weren’t. Not long after this happening, I made better choices in who I was hanging out with. At the time, this seemed awful. But in the end, I came out of it with a life-long friend. Funny how those things work out, isn’t it?