This piece is a little bit deep because it’s digging into my childhood and may also make you tap into memories that sit uncomfortably with you still to this day. However, that is my mission. Someone told me yesterday that you couldn’t rewrite history and those words stuck with me, which inspired this blog post.
Like many of you, I have been through stuff that I would rather forget than face. But time and time again, these memories come up again and it is almost like going through the memory like a movie, dissecting every bit because now I am older and I want to understand the reason behind my experiences or feelings. What am I talking about?
When I talk about my experience, the adults in my life than people I went to school with for example did it more. One experience that sticks with me is my teacher who told me I wouldn’t amount to anything and that I was already a failure before I even did GCSEs’. Where did this come from? She was angry because I decided to no longer participate in the school sports team, as I wasn’t that passionate about it anymore. I will not lie and say I was an angel everyday at school but I never deserved those words nor did the other students that were also told the same thing.
This was over 10 years ago I experienced this, but sometimes when things go wrong, I automatically go back to that moment. Or other moments where other adult figures in my life judged me before I even know my own life. Still to this day there are people who still do it to me. But why do I go back to those moments instead of moving on?
People don’t realise how strong words are.
Now I always looked at her quote as something positive because I always look to make people feel good about themselves and it was reassurance that they won’t forget that. However, the bad side of it is, if there is someone that has ever made you feel bad, you will never forget how that made you feel and that is me. That is what bullying does. At that moment she made me feel worthless, hopeless and all the dreams I had felt like they slipped away from me year by year because of her words.
When I was 10 years old, I was with my mum and I saw this large building in the middle to the town centre and I tugged my mum’s hand, pointed at the building and told her that one day it was going to be my head office. I didn’t know what type of business it would be, how much it would cost…I was just determined.
Fast forward to when I finished school, I felt like I would be lucky to even pass my A-levels and the head office dream was completely gone. I’m sure she has moved on with her life but I will never forget her words, how they made me feel and how they still make me feel.
Today it stops.
You can’t rewrite history. Advice given to me when something went wrong on Sunday and I confided in someone today about what that teacher said to me when I was younger. Those four words stuck with me after our meeting.
You can’t rewrite history.
Just like that, it was like a light bulb moment went off in my head about how my childhood bully still had power over me without her even being present. From talking to people, I know I am not the only one and people that had bullies in any stages of their lives still experience moments where they go back to that memory and for some it completely crushes their self esteem.
For those who have experienced it, you may have a moment where you are in your glory and are feeling happy with yourself and at some point you think, if only X could see me now (X being the bully). Some may think, I wish X would try bullying me now and see what happens to her/him. Others may even thank X for giving them that drive later on in life to be successful just to prove that X was wrong. A few may still think, I wonder if X is still a bitch like she/he was to me at school or at work. Lastly some might imagine X struggling in life to make themselves feel better.
Truth be told, X still controls a part of your life.
There is nothing wrong with trying to prove someone wrong and waving your middle finger to all your naysayers. However, to some extent I feel like I am give X power. I feel like I am saying I am successful because of what she said or what she did.
The only reason I say this is because it is giving her words power and to some extent if something goes wrong I give her even more power when I think, ‘oh God she was right.’
I have seen articles that always talk about people losing weight because someone laughed at them or called them horrible names or they were discriminated against. Perfect example, is when people used to called me anorexic or golf stick legs and I put myself on a mission to gain weight aiming to eat over 3000 calories a day. Where did that get me? In a state where I became so obsessed with my image, feeling self-conscious and although I gained a bit of weight at that time, it didn’t feel that great, why? I didn’t do it for me.
Now I am healthy, have gained weight but this just happened naturally as I grew up and have never felt more confident. Not because I gained weight and am no longer being called skinny sticks (rude, I know), but because I stopped caring about people’s words.
You can’t turn back the clock on what the bullies have said or what anyone has said that made you feel low. However, you can stop letting it affect you by accepting that it happened and the fact that you are doing something with yourself now is proof enough that their words meant nothing and are still nothing. Don’t let it eat you up anymore and concentrate on the good things people say to you now.
There are some still going through it now and honestly, my heart hurts knowing that there are people out there that boost themselves up by putting other people down. There is a message is all of that somewhere. The fact that they seek to make someone feel low to feel better tells you everything you need to know.
They have seen something in you that they may not have or feel is missing. I used to think it was a lie when people used to say that to try and make me feel better. Now I realise that there is some truth to this. The fact that they have picked you, means there see something special in you they don’t see in themselves and rather than sparking their own light, they would rather dim yours.
Don’t give them power by letting their words sink in to your brain so far that even when they are not there you still think of them in a way that does not make you feel good about yourself. No other human being should have that power and as hard as it might be, think of your naysayers as people feeling short of something in their life and your view of them might alter. You may go from feeling inferior to them to actually feeling sorry for them.
I now realise that my teacher must have either gone through something that made her the way she was or she saw something in me and other students that she didn’t see in herself. In no shape or form does any child or adult deserve to be made to feel worthless and my only hope is that she has changed her ways or is no longer teaching. It scares me to think that she may be in other school teaching her poison to the next generation.
You can’t rewrite history but you can shape your present and write your future.
“People will not always remember what you do for them but they will always remember how they made you feel”.
Words are powerful; don’t spew words that may make someone feel down about themselves because you never know how much of an effect it has on them and how long it will stick with them for.
Have a good weekend & love always!