Tuesday, February 1, 2011

her.

Thank you Myers-Briggs and the counseling center for a taste of clarity! Finally! After years of struggling to fit in somewhere, anywhere, with anyone…I have found the truth to my intricate peculiarity.

Yes, it’s true. I am an INFP.

Which means…for all of you who are psychologically impaired, I share my personality with one percent of the American population.

One. Percent.
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This is precisely why I have never seemed to fit in with 99 percent of society. This is why I still get teased sometimes. Frankly people, when it all comes down, I am just a little bit weird.

(At this point, it’s perfectly ethical to agree with me.)

Even though it's been a good thirteen years since the brunt of teasing, sometimes this longing to be a Spice Girl wakes up in the pit of my stomach and I morph into my prepubescent self. I transform into the epitome of awkwardness. I am almost positive nobody notices this makeover but me. I can be standing in the Bluecoast Burrito line and suddenly, without warning, grow a pair of chicken legs with Ked sneakered feet turned in, and wide-eyes surveying the floor tile. I appear beaten. Like a dog...Maybe a poodle or a small child. But it's my 1997 self, having just come from a taunting in the 7th grade locker room. I don't know who in the world purchased me hunter-green sweatpants, but I'm wearing them with a gaping hole in one knee. I have a white sweatshirt on, with a purple cat posing seductively among some flowers, and I don't know who would by me a piece of work like that either. Nonetheless, I'm wearing them, with jacked up teeth, and a bob haircut that actually resembles a legit fro. There are girls in my grade whom I want to be, and I watch them sometimes from where I sit alone in the cafeteria. They wear blue eye shadow and own Giga-Pets. I write in my diary that if I were as pretty as them I would probably have hair that dried straight, and braces, and my period, not to mention magazine photographs of Jonathan Taylor Thomas hanging in my locker. If I were like them, I would even think that Jonathan Taylor Thomas was hot. (I never did. Even when I realized that boys existed in tenth grade.)

Also, if I were cool as those girls (who by the way all started having babies at 16 and never made it to college) I wouldn't get made fun of by "the populars" who looked like they came from a JC Penney catalog every single day, and hated my guts for some reason. Does anybody know why it's fun to slam a 12 year-old girl into a locker? Probably because I didn't ever seem to own the right shoes. Probably because I felt like my limbs didn't fit, and had this way of walking down the hall with my shoulders hunched and my little back curved. It could've been the scoliosis. Or it could've been that I was just 100 percent awkward, down to my fingernails, and everybody knew it.

Especially me.

Sometimes I stand in the Student Center and something reminds me of blue eye shadow and sweatpants with holes. It's always something as fleeting as a word, or a tone of voice, or the kind of shallow envy that rises like nausea. It's her. I see her in my hands when I bite my nails. I see her when I walk quickly through a crowded room to escape the hoards of people. She comes out in my shyness, with the aversion of eyes, and the inability to introduce myself. She's hiding. She thinks everyone is making fun of her. And when she hears Hanson on the radio, she still thinks about the back of the bus, and going unnoticed, and Wal-Mart tennis shoes with multi-colored laces.


In case you haven’t gathered it by now, her is me.

I feel like casting her out, like a devil. Saying: "Go from me twelve year-old!" But you can't ever cast you out of you. I've tried it a thousand different ways. With food and words and clothes and mutilation and hair dye and comedy and tears and shoes and boys and pain. You can't. So I have to be friends with the twelve year-old that nobody wanted to be friends with. I have to hold her hand and calm her down and say, "Shhhhh. Shhhh, you're twenty-five years old so please calm down at least until I purchase my lunch and get you back to your room."

I still hear what my mom told me in high school. "Honey, they're just jealous!" It was something like a padded answer that infuriated me at the time. If only I would have understood! If only. IF ONLY.


If only it wouldn’t have taken me this long to realize the truth of the matter. Hear this, twelve year-old, hear this and be quiet.
They were.