One morning I opened my computer to several Facebook alerts- comments, invitations, and many solicitations. One of those alerts stuck out to me though, one that I couldn’t ignore- it was an alert from a girl I knew in junior high to join her Facebook group. I had heard of the brand she works with before and was interested in checking it out, but I had also almost forgotten about a hurtful incident that occurred back in school.

We all know the saying “sticks and stones can break my bones, but words will never hurt me,” but we also know the truth. Unless you have the seemingly thick (and tanned) skin of Donald Trump, words can be even more hurtful than the worst spill on the pavement.

Donald Trump

When I was 12 I was very shy and awkward. I went into junior high insecure and confused when rumors started spreading about me. Over the years I became jaded and a little resentful of my hometown, just because of words that were said to me at a young age. I starting thinking people were out to get me, which I learned was false after moving away to college and living in a few cities across the United States. I met some great people along the way, from all over the world. Instead of living life in such paranoia, I became open to the world and began to finally love life again- but more importantly, learned how to love other people with an open heart.

Now, back to the Facebook alert. After getting notification after notification from the same girl, I was compelled to take the mature road and rant about it on Facebook. 😉 Although I hardly ever post controversial or emotionally driven things on social media (that’s left for websites like this one), I was absolutely moved to do so on that given moment, especially with all of the awareness going on about anti-bullying. The outcome ended up being 59 likes, many positive messages from others who relate, and even reconnected with my best friend from that year- who was also just as bullied by the same person. Even if I was ugly as an adolescent, and even if my hair is made of straw, did it really matter? I fail to understand the reasoning why people point out such obvious things to other people, but I REALLY fail to understand why people point out hurtful opinions to others, especially at a young and tender age.

Since leaving my hometown and moving to New York City, I’ve learned so much about life and love. Even though I was deeply affected by those words back then, I managed to forget them and even forgive (after all, I accepted the friend request). Although I haven’t personally spoken to my bully about what happened years ago, it would be really interesting to do so… and maybe we would even be friends.

So even if you stumble on the pavement, I hope you’re with someone who will catch you and help you heal. Those are the types of people in life who are precious and invaluable; the ones who watch you when you fall and pick you up anyway.

 

Photo Credit: POPSUGAR, IMeanWhat.com

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Kristin Fehrman

Kristin Fehrman

A Michigan-born serial city hopper, I strive to live the good life- one act of kindness at a time. From San Francisco to New York City, I am finally settling back in my homeland of the Midwest and making Chicago home.