What Hurts the Most

You know that feeling when you get those nervous butterflies in your stomach around that certain someone?   You know the one I’m talking about.  And, if you say you don’t, you’re lying.  Coupled with that is shortened breath, pinkening cheeks, and a quickened pulse. You can’t stop thinking about him/her, and you can’t get over the fact how much you enjoy being with this person.

That pretty much means you’ve got the hots for someone.  The love bug has struck, or Cupid has shot you with his arrow.

Love is a terribly confusing, sad, crazy, and yet joyful emotion.

But, what hurts is when the person you have feelings for doesn’t reciprocate.  You care about him, but he doesn’t care about you in the same way.  He’s nice…but nice to everyone. He talks and smiles at you but about nothing of deep substance or meaning.  He never asks you for your number or asks if you’re doing anything later because he’s free. You want to be close to him, but you know he doesn’t want to be.

And, what really hurts is when no remotely-attractive guy ever asks you any of those things.  You’re called cute, as in little girl cute.  You’re called innocent and sheltered.  And, no guy ever gives you a second glance or the time of day. Add insult to injury, you’ve been single forever. You’ve never had a boy tell you that he loves you and enjoys being with you.   You’re “too nice”, “too shy”, and “cute”, but not hot, beautiful, or pretty.  You’re just an average, ordinary, miniscule female who’s neither completely rejected, yet neither embraced and adored by society.

I’d love to know what I have to do right in order for a relationship to happen.

Sometimes I wish I weren’t me and were someone else who were loved.

It’s times like these I ask God why.  I know I need to trust you, Lord.

But, it hurts.  It really does.  😥

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The First Cut is the Deepest

As you can probably guess from the title, this post is going to be about self-harm.  But, I’m sure you are wondering whether I self-harm or did in the past, and I must admit I never have.  (The only thing I’ve done to, I guess “abuse” myself is pull out my eyelashes and ends of  my eyebrows.  I didn’t do this because I thought I was ugly; I did it just to do it.  It was an addiction, but that fixation only lasted for 7th and 8th grades.  I stopped when my family members began noticing.)  So, I guess, you can say, I haven’t really traveled much in the shoes of those who are partakers of self-harm.  But, as a fellow human being, I just want to let you know, I have felt the feelings of worthlessness, loneliness, and emptiness. Sometimes, I feel as if even my own family hates me.  Honestly, I have cried more in this last year than I cried in the past 5 years.  I know, I’m a wreck.  But, how I got onto to this subject is because I saw a picture on pinterest about self-harm, and also recently just heard the story of a high school acquaintance/friend who has cut herself.  I looked at more pictures on Pinterest and was reading quotes and looking at the scars, not to laugh, scoff, mock, or condescendingly assert, “I’ve never been that bad” because I am ashamed to say I have done so much worse.  I have my own secrets that I am deeply embarrassed and ashamed of.  Anyways, I looked at those pictures to get a sense and feeling of what people who are trapped  in self-harm truly are going through.

After a few minutes, I couldn’t handle it anymore when I saw pictures of bloody wounds. Scars are one thing, but the sight of blood sends chills down my back. My eyes brimmed with tears because quite honestly I could easily have been that person. Again, I am not saying this haughtily, but I am tearfully asserting that it is only by God’s grace that I have not been there myself.  I understand why people cut themselves; physical pain and cuts can heal faster than deep-seated emotional wounds. But, I honestly want to go out and find every single girl and boy who is about ready to put a bullet through her/his brain or slash her/his wrist or other body part, and go hug and cry with them and love on them.  I’ve been there with those lonely feelings.  That’s the extent I have to speak on this topic.  And, honestly, I don’t like discussing this, because of blood and the hurt of the past that has to be remembered.

It hurts me deeply because it makes me realize that I’m not the only one who has to go through the emotional pain.  It may be the result of a breakup, a divorce in the family, a death in the family, loneliness, lack of friends, bullying, negative self-talk, or something I have no idea about.  But, I want to say that I’ve had one of those lonely, heart-wrenching nights, pleading to God to hear me and comfort me and lead me to friends, wondering if He even hears me.

Friends, let me say that I only have a limited knowledge of self-harm and emotional pain.  Again, I can only give thanks to God for that, for not letting me go further.  But, also let me say that Jesus Christ Himself has scars.  No, they aren’t from self-harm, but He has scars, nonetheless.  And, trust me, He knows what it is like to be completely, utterly rejected by friends, society, and even His own family.  God disowned Him because of the weight of sin He took on.  Can you imagine having not only no human support but even no divine support?  Not only did His sides and hands or wrists get partially impaled, but He totally stopped living.  He died.  He was bleeding, rejected, tormented, and on top of that, life went out of Him.  I think we can genuinely say He has been in our shoes. Not only can He relate to us in this way, but He is the God of the Universe. He knows what we are going through.  He knew that in 2014 each of us would struggle with something that is daunting.  But, just as Jesus rose from the dead, and conquered death, sin, and Satan, He can help each of us conquer what we are going through.  There is power in the bloody wounds of Jesus and by His stripes we are healed, so we don’t have to live chained to despair, self-harm, hatred, or any other sinful actions and emotions.

Now, I’m not going to say we will never struggle again, because we will.  We will until we receive new bodies in heaven.  But, we don’t have to carry our struggles alone. Give them to the One who was rejected, despised, and scarred.  He does know what we’re going through.

“You’re Socially Inept and We Know It!”

Just as a forewarning, this post is going to be a rant.  It is about, as indicated in the title, the pressure society puts on you if you are the least bit shy and how I feel about this way of thinking.

I just don’t understand why people act as if I’m utterly strange and socially inept because I’m not attached to someone.  Now, first let me state that I would love to have a boyfriend.  There, I said it. Maybe, deep down, I am a bit desperate.  But, if I were openly, blatantly, outwardly desperate, I would be going up to every guy who’s the least bit attractive and flirting up a storm.  But, I’m not, because I am a rather shy individual.  And, this is why people probably think I’m socially inept.  The rationale goes like this: you can either be super clingy and lovey-dovey with your boyfriend/girlfriend and be thought of as acceptable because you have an active love life, or you can be surrounded by several friends and going out every night (usually this includes meeting up with guys and going on a flirt-fest). These lifestyles are both stamped with approval by society because you are always with someone, never alone, and thus normal, healthy, and social.  Enter all the so-called misfits who for whatever reason don’t have a boyfriend and don’t have many friends (or no friends) nearby.

I would like to publicly clarify why I have no boy to cling to and why I don’t have many friends.

First, I have no boyfriend because as I already stated, I am rather shy, and also because there are not many opportunities to meet guys.  Last year, I was able to start a new life, and branch out, but alas, no guy found that I was the perfect one for him.  Does that make me socially inept?  I would like to remind you of healthy, social people who are created by God to live the single life their entire lives.  Also, are we really arrogant enough as humans to think that we have the right to judge people and condemn them non-verbally for not having the “right” personality?

This leads me to discussing why I don’t have very many girl friends.  I would like to say I am an ambivert, but a very shy one at that.  7th grade I only had one friend.  8th grade I had one main friend in my class, and a few acquaintances with girls who were older than me.  9th grade was spent with again, one friend.  And, 10th through 12th grade was spent with acquaintances who I only saw at school, although I had 4 girls from church who I became pretty good friends with during 11th and 12th grade, but they were 2-4 years younger than me.  Last year, my freshman year of college, I blossomed, at least in my mind.  I still was a bit shy, and did take time warming up to people, but I learned that I will not have any friends by never talking or speaking up.   I guess I figured if I never disagreed with anyone, they would all be friends with me.  But, that’s precisely how I never gained friends! So, last year, was fantastic because for the first time in my life, I had more than one good friend.  I had found my niche.  And, I was happy.

Fast forward to this year .  Because of a health problem that is still not resolved, I have had to stay in Ohio and work.  Needless to say, I feel like I have taken a step backward and really will have to up the ante in the fall when I go back to the Bob.  At work, I have progressed some and truly am working at being my real, loud crazy self.  It’s definitely a struggle, and sometimes I feel as if I’m going nowhere.  I feel as if some people would never guess I’m shy, but others who are with me for more than 5-10 minutes at the register or the customers to whom I bring out their food, know that I’m really not that talkative.  The reason for this is both the fact that I honestly cannot think of a thing to say, as well as I am afraid people will judge me. I know, I know, I shouldn’t care what other people think. But, the fact that people WILL judge me whether I care or not leads me to worrying about what they will think. It’s a vicious cycle! Just a few days ago, I was switching the salt and pepper shakers at a table to be in the right order.  An older lady laughed at me after I did so.  When I did so, did I know what she was thinking and thus refrain from switching them because I knew cared what she thought? Obviously not, but that got me thinking about how many times people laugh at me or tell stories about me when I’m not around because of awkward, weird things I do.  Do I wish I wouldn’t worry about this? Yes! Life is so much freer. But, learning to not care is a huge, long process for a shy person.   Again, I’m working on it.  I just wish people would take the time to realize that.

Another part/side of the coin is that my extended family has been no help.  When I was in maybe 11th or 12th grade, my uncle asked me who my 3 top best friends were at school.  Because I paused and didn’t immediately list them off (remember how I didn’t really have any?) , he (in my opinion) arrogantly assumed I was a social reject.  And, you know, maybe I was, because I didn’t hang out with people on the weekends.  But, he is not really the most social person either, and it’s not like I tried to be weird. I guess my family thought/thinks I should have tried/should try harder to be social for the sake of their dignity and family name. (Wait…isn’t that caring about how someone, me, would affect others’ opinions of them?) Anyways, had my uncle asked me that question last year, or even now, I could list my top 6 or 7.   (The only problem is I don’t know if these friends still consider me in their top whatever.  But, that’s not my concern or the issue at hand here.)  Even if I answered the “who are your top 3 friends” question sufficiently, I feel that my uncle would still condescendingly ask if I currently hang out with them.  It’s as if pointing out my flaws and failures in life makes others feel better about themselves and their lives.  It’s like they’re saying, “I may have done this thing that I regret, but at least my social life is better than Emma’s.  She really needs to fix that huge failure of a life she has.” Maybe  they really aren’t saying that, but I  do feel like I’m continually being watched and critiqued.  It would be one thing if I were completely depressed, always hiding away in my room, cutting myself, and plotting to murder people.  That’s how society paints shy people.  But, I would NEVER want to waste my life in that way.  Again, I loved the new life I had last year.  As an ambivert, I enjoy some social interaction and miss the fun social life I had last year. But, it does take a bit for me to warm up to people, and this fact, along with the realization that there really aren’t that many people my age near me to hang out with, presents an obstacle in me fulfilling my societal obligation of being super social.

The thing is even if anyone took the time to see whether I would like to have friends or not (READ: Yes!! My social interaction meter is way too low, even for this ambivert!), they would have to hear this story, the whole thing.  I have a feeling that people at work, church, even last year when I made friends at college, somehow deep down knew that I was desperate for friends.  And, that my friend,is the  most critical question of the day:  how do you move on from the past of few or no friends without sharing your loaded-down past full of baggage?  How do you make friends without looking desperate?  Are you to never make friends because you might be that toxic person with baggage that will pull them down? I thought the only way to get over the past and change is to do a 180.   And, if you had no friends in the past, the opposite of that would be to make friends.  Also, right now, where I am in life, where there are literally no people to hang out or who want to spend the time of day even trying to allow me to share my side of the story, I dread when people ask what I did for the weekend or the last night.  For me, my social life is work.  Yes, it’s that bad. But, it’s either that, or sit at home.  Extended family, which would you approve of more?  And, please do tell me, from an ambivert’s point of view, how you find people to talk to and what to talk about just like *that*.  Maybe you can do magic, but I surely know I can’t.  Even just this past Sunday at my birthday party, I sat by myself because my brothers and cousin didn’t want me to sit with them. So, instead of putting up a losing fight with them and getting talked to for making a scene for that, my family politely reprimanded me for sitting there by myself and not mingling.  Some people (*cough many of my family members*cough) do not like me or find me annoying; am I to make them hate me more by forcing a conversation with them? I realize I do need to branch out more, but the only possible people at church to do anything social with would be my ex-friends who decided I wasn’t worth their time of day because I sided with people they didn’t agree with on a church issue; women who are married; singles who are in their late 20s/early 30s who I feel see me as, again, socially inept/awkward; a girl who I have tried to be more friendly with but knew me as my extremely shy self years ago and who already distanced herself from me back then.  I’m not blaming any of these people for my lack of outgoing-ness.  I wish I could force myself to buck up and talk.  But, I sense that these people  feel that they don’t need me.  There would have to be work on both sides of the equation.  And, that’s just too hard.  Deep down we all want friends, but we want it to be instant and easy.  And, for some people, it comes just like that for them.  But, again, there are people who are naturally outgoing, but move right past the shyer people because their personality is non-existent and thus annoying to them.  For people to assume that I’m the only one in the wrong for not making a daily or weekly attempt to socialize is a bit rude and unfair.

In conclusion, to all the people out there who I may have offended for not talking to you, I’m sorry.  The shy part of my ambivert self usually takes over; I’m really not antisocial.  I’m working on it, but sometimes I just wish  people would take a little break from the judgement.

15 Problems Short Girls Can Relate To

Hello.  I’m Emma.  I’m almost 20. Yes, I’m 5 feet tall, and no I don’t look my age.  Just as tall ladies have problems, we shorties have our own.   Here’s some of them:

1.  Normal pants are too long.  When they do fit, they’re usually supposed to be capri length.  (And, petite sized pants usually aren’t geared to college-aged ladies.)

2.  (Many shorties are also baby-faced.  Here’s one for you.)  People tell you you’ll love looking like that when your older.

3. People jokingly ask you if you get carded to see R- rated movies.

4. At work, you either must constantly use a step ladder, and STILL struggle to get items down from shelves, or feel like a burden and go ask someone taller.

5. Friends or relatives the same age as you like to stand next to you and share that you’re both the same age.

6. Some people mistakenly ask what high school you attend or when you’re going to graduate from high school.

7. When you are ringing people up, they say, “Thank you, sweetie” , “honey”, “baby”, or “young lady”.

8.  “I thought you were 14!”

9. Younger children stand next to you and share that they’re almost your height.

10. You always had to stand in the front row for class picture days, kindergarten through high school.

11. (For the swimmers out there): Swim competitions placed you in heats by age group; the final category was 15-18 year olds. Enough said .

12. You were always just inches from being able to ride the “big kid rides” and rollercoasters with your “normal height” friends.

13. You put your hair up on top of your head to make you look at least a teensy bit taller.

14. Driving takes just a little bit more skill (either that, or a pillow). 😉

15. Other people somehow seem to think that you’re their personal arm rest or somehow you enjoy being their arm rest.

In the end ladies, it doesn’t matter whether we’re tall or not.  God looks at our heart, and He created everyone in all different shapes and sizes.  We’re just how He meant us to be. Just think of the plus side: we don’t hardly have to duck  under things, we’re “FUN size”, and we can be quite useful for getting in small spaces.  🙂 I hope maybe some people can relate to these, and since we know we have our problems, let’s not forget to treat our tall friends with kindness and empathy, since they have their own problems and we know what it is like to be on the receiving end of some ribbing and poking fun.  I’ve just had to learn to be like a duck and let it float off my back because we can’t change our height.  Life’s too short to take jokes too seriously.  🙂