Everyone has their own unique place or environment where the best version of themselves suddenly shines through. As a kid, mine was always the farm.
By 6 years old, I could stand up to an ornery goat without getting charged. At 8 years old I could take a blow from the spurs of the meanest rooster and cuddle the aggression out of him. At the farm, I felt like the Steve Erwin of goats and chickens: able to handle anything. At the farm, I felt like me.
Unfortunately this feeling had a way of fizzling out the second I walked through the doors of my eighth grade. That specific year, every girl in my class decided that I would be the one they chose to bully.
In school it didn’t matter how comfortable I was staring down an aggressive goat because in the face of a mean 13-year-old girl I cowered like a chicken at the bottom of the pecking order. The meanest of roosters has nothing on the viciousness of eighth-grade girls.
It began halfway through September. Brittany Johnson was the ringleader and I rarely spotted her without a group of girls hovering around her. On the bus she would snicker to her friends about me, calling me ugly, stupid and, most commonly, “dumb blonde.” These comments traveled to the classroom where the rest of the girls soon joined in.… Read the rest