This topic of bullies has been one of the biggest sorrows and burdens my entire life. This past month has brought all of the memories from my past to the surface and I've had to painfully remember them and use those memories to talk to those around me who are or have been bullied. being called every cruel term about pimples to having a gut. to not wearing the "cool clothes" to smelling like cigarettes because my mom and grandma smoked in the house. to not fitting in and not being accepted for who I was. From the jackass who tormented me every chance he got in high school to the guy who repeatedly tormented me in the pool during PE. The girls who would laugh at me and wouldn't give me the time of day. the ones who looked at me as if I were a Leaper and would give them a disease if they talked to me or had to sit next to me. High school in a nutshell was a nightmare. the football player who was coach johnsons' pride and joy who threw apples and oranges at me, who shoved me into lockers, called me every horrible name he could think of, and made it his life's mission to make me miserable. from pantsing me every chance he got and calling me needle dick whenever there was a group of girls around. He was there to make sure I was the one who was laughed at when there were plenty of people to laugh at me with him.
Yeah, i hated high school. I hated the teachers that didn't listen, I hated the students that laughed at me, i hated those who took it upon themselves to make sure I was as unhappy as possible. What goes through the mind of a kid who is bullied? first, sadness. second, hatred. third, self doubt. fourth, more hatred. fifth, depressing/anxiety/rage. see the pattern? with each and every time that someone is bullied, their rage grows. What happens if that rage doesn't have an outlet? mayhem. That kid who was bullied incessantly finally cannot take it anymore and does one of two things. They take their life, or the life of another. How do I know? I fantasized about the revenge I wanted. it consumed me. All I could think about was the vengeance that I would have one day. The day that I wasn't paying attention and I was hit with an apple in the head from across the classroom and the teacher did NOTHING. What did I have planned at that point? I packed my backpack, I went to my car, I went home, grabbed a baseball bat, and started driving back to school. I was going to make sure that the pain I felt both physically and mentally would be transferred back to this guy. I got back to school and sat in my car for what felt like hours. I cried. I cried hard. Who had I become? This person with so much rage I wanted to cause physical harm to another person? It scared the hell out of me. long story short, I chose NOT to take out my rage on him. Call it a miracle of God, call it a turning point, call it whatever you want. I somehow became the exception. I chose not to hurt another human being.
So, How did I make it out alive? 8 people come to mind apart from my family. Eddie Henderson, Heidi Henderson, Jennifer Morris, Jesse Morris, Daryl Jones, Jenny Jones, Jim Monck, and Sharon Monck, and Bev Kelley. These were all people that were either a pastor, youth pastor, or leader and role model to me. These were people that accepted me completely. pimples, gut, and awkwardness, and everything else. They made me feel as if I belonged. I gradually BELIEVED that I belonged. Eddie, Jesse, and Daryl kept me on the straight and narrow and the wonderful women were the shoulder I needed to share my burdens with. I can confidently say that without them, I don't know if I would be here today.
Thank you Eddie, Heidi, Jennider, Jesse, Daryl, Jenny, Bev, Jim, and Sharon for being there for me when I needed it. You have truly been a godsend to me in my life.
I learned one very important lesson in all of this: It will get better. maybe not today, or tomorrow, but it will get better. I promise.
P.S. do you have a story similar to this? Were you the bully and changed your ways? Share in the comments section and let the world know that Bullies will not be tolerated anymore!