I am an INFP personality type, which stands for Introverted Intuitive Feeling Perceiving. This means I have a high emotional intensity among other things. I wish I knew this when I was younger. As a child I always felt things more strongly. I wasn’t aware of it until I’d see that my reaction to things differed from the people around me. I’d go to Barnes and Noble and I’d find myself crying over a book that a kid wouldn’t really care for. I cried in almost every movie while everyone around me stared; most likely confused. I didn’t understand why I cried, or more at the time I didn’t understand why everyone else did not. This did not serve me well upon starting school. Once people discovered that I was a sensible child, the bullying began. It thankfully never came to physical bullying, but I definitely experienced verbal and emotional bullying. During this period, my rocks were my family because I knew that no matter what, I’d always come home to a place where I was loved. I wish I could say that the bullying only lasted a short amount of time, but it didn’t. I was labeled the “crybaby” or the “geek” because I was a profound girl with a deep love for books who also happened to wear glasses-I was an easy target. As I became tired of dealing with the bullying, I knew I had to invent some sort of defense mechanism to get by. But, when you’re a thirteen-year-old, your strategies are not very much effective. I became my own bully. I tried to foresee any attack that would be aimed at me so that I was prepared. By doing so, I picked and dug for each and every flaw of mine and in my head I judged myself and criticized everything I did. I always felt like I came short. Even though through this I eventually began to stand up for myself and the bullying gradually stopped. This came at the cost of forgetting to love myself. I became numb to feeling and only expressed my true self while I was with my family or best friend. I was so scared of feeling like the loser girl again-even though deep down I still felt like one. I wasn’t who I wanted to be and I felt trapped. I’ve always been a free spirit so when I felt trapped, depression creeped in. It’s something I’d never wish on my worst enemy. In public, I was the cheerful child who always smiled and tried to make everyone laugh. I never wanted those I loved to ever feel my pain so the only witness of my tears was my pillow. To everyone else I was no longer the nerd, but deep down I knew I wished I was. Until things in my life got so out of control I locked myself in my room, broke down, and yelled “I’m a failure.” That’s when I discovered the power of words. After that, I stopped trying altogether. I stopped caring about anything because I really believed that I’d just fail again and again and never make it in life. I just kept sinking into this constant sad state of mind. Each day I felt number than the day before. As time passed I remember praying to God because all I wanted at that point was to feel again. I felt like even my prayers weren’t good enough for God. I remember one night, shortly after that desperate prayer I went to a church sermon. The preacher spoke over the power of words and how easily we feed into talking ourselves down. I cried a river during that service and for the first time in a long time, I didn’t care. I remember feeling God’s love then and there and the heavy burden that I had been carrying for so long was lifted. I made a choice that day, I was going to stop talking down on myself or my situation. That was the moment in which my breakthrough began. It has been a long process. It took a long time for me to learn to love myself again, and it’s something I’m still practicing today. If I can’t learn to love myself, how can I expect anyone else to? The power is in your words. No matter how badly you screwed up or how many times someone else tells you that failure is your destiny, never feed into that lie. Never be your own bully, there’s enough of those out there in the world. Find what you love and explore within that, no matter what anyone else says. I’ve found that bullies are really just misery wanting company. Don’t listen to the bullying, keep doing what you love. The people that matter will cheer you on continuously, always hold on to them because those don’t always come around. Keep reading your books, keep loving math, keep making music, keep creating beautiful art, keep playing your sport, and keep chasing your dream, even when they laugh or try to break you. You are a beautiful human who has so much to offer this world. Do not be so hard on yourself. You will fail, a lot. However, the only reason you fail is because you’re doing something everyone else said was impossible, next time you will prove them wrong-just you wait and see. Never give up and never lose yourself because someone doesn’t like the real you. That just means you’re different, and all the more special-never forget that. You are and forever will be loved.
I’ve been feeling the urge to write about this for a very long time but held back because it was ironically never “good enough.” However, I feel like it’s more important that I get to know you guys on a deeper level and for that I need to be transparent. This is me and thank you for reading, I truly appreciate it. Love you all,