Tag: teenager

Are We Still Friends?

I don’t know if I was ever yours, but you used to be my best friend. You were the only person I could really be myself with, someone who understood parts of who I am when others could not because they were part of you too.

But now? You barely text me. If it weren’t for me, we probably wouldn’t talk at all. I know that when we’re both at university we don’t really talk. Yes, at the beginning of the summer you would text me to hang out quite a lot,  and that made me so happy. I felt wanted, needed even. But now it feels like we’re drifting apart, and I don’t know what to do. I don’t know if that’s what you want. Is it?

It feels like we don’t have as much in common anymore. We can’t complain about our subjects together anymore, or the stress we’re under, or all the work we have to do. We can’t talk about TV shows that aren’t on air anymore, or teachers that we no longer have. We can’t debate things we learn about because we learn different things. So what do we have? What do you want to talk about?

Friends fall out of touch, I know they do. That’s life. But I don’t want to be alone. You have all your other friends, your huge group chat, all your uni friends who you are so happy with, and I have nothing, and no one. Just my misery for company aside from you. I have a few people, here and there, yes. But we could be so great together, like best friends again. But I can’t see how you could want that too if you don’t ever talk to me.

So I just have to ask you this. Do you still want to be friends? Do I mean anything to you? Because at this point, I’m just not sure.

The Story of How I Became Shy

The Story of How I Became Shy

In primary school, I had this friend. I’ll call her Heather.

I never had any doubt that Heather and I were best friends. We met in pre-school, and became friends quickly and stayed that way throughout primary school; I don’t even remember not being best friends. As far as I can remember, she was just always there. It’s as if she always was.

I had other friends, of course, but there was never any challenge to her. We were so similar; weird in the same way, quiet in the same way, but also loud in the same way. I couldn’t imagine life without her. We were also close with another girl who we met later, Myrtle. She was my second best friend, if you like. Between them, I had all the friendship I needed. I didn’t really pay that much attention to other people because I didn’t need them. I had Heather and Myrtle.

When we moved up to secondary school, we stayed close, particularly Heather and I. It was the same as primary school; I made other friends, I talked to other people in class, but she was by far my closest friend, followed again by Myrtle. Almost 2,000 people in the school, but I needed no one else. We were best friends forever.

And then, suddenly, I didn’t have her.

I remember when I was told. It was April in Year 7, I was having a bath, my mum knocked on the bathroom door and came in. She told me that Heather’s family had managed to sell their house. I’d known that they were trying, but with the housing market as bad as it was I’d just never really believed that they would actually manage it.

And so… she moved away. 400 miles away, to Scotland.

It would have crushed me to lose her at school. But at least I had Myrtle, right? … until she also moved away, to Greece. A month after Heather left.

And then I was alone.

Thus, I started Year 8 with no real friends, no one I felt close to, or comfortable with. I’d given my heart entirely to my closest friends, because I had only needed them. And in their wake they left nothing.

Everyone else had spent Year 7 forming extensive, close and seemingly exclusive friendship groups, and after a year of barely talking to them I didn’t feel welcome. So, for the first year or so, I largely spent my break and lunch alone, trying to avoid older students who might try to make fun of me for being a loner. When I saw people I knew, I wanted so badly to join them, eat with them, laugh with them… but they all knew each other and I didn’t really know them. I didn’t know what they liked, or what made them laugh, or what to say at all… what could I offer them? I felt that if I joined them, I would be an outsider, a nuisance. They were happy without me, I thought, I didn’t have anything to offer them. They didn’t want me. I would just be annoying to them.

It took me a long time to become fully incorporated in a new group of friends. But even so, that feeling never went away. No matter who it was, I always felt that whenever I opened my mouth, they would think I was annoying, an irritation, someone they wished wasn’t there. It began to extend not just to friends, but to teachers, shop assistants, family members. Everyone.

And so I learned to not speak at all. Pretend like I didn’t exist, because I thought that that’s what other people wanted. Any personality I had had with Heather and Myrtle was buried deep beneath an exterior of shyness so that I would not be noticed. And so, I became shy.

After a few years, my shy exterior eventually began to crack. I became loud, argumentative (in a good way) in English classes. I debated with my new best friend in such a loud voice that it’s hard to believe that no one noticed. I had extensive conversations with my history teachers, giving them intellectual thought beyond school work that I knew they could appreciate.

Slowly, slowly, I came back out of my shell. But those insecurities still crippled me, forbade me from making many friends when I came to university. They kept me lonely, dependent on just a few people who I trusted. They kept me weak.

But no more.

I Don’t Care What You Say; I Am Beautiful

I’ve never thought of myself as beautiful. Ever.

Of course my mum tells me I am, and occasionally some other family members, but they don’t count – everyone’s mum thinks they’re beautiful. No one else had ever told me I was remotely good looking; not my friends, not any boys, no one. When I looked in the mirror I saw the same face I saw every day, the same one I’d seen my whole life, and it looked plain, boring. Too round, too chubby. The eyes too small, too deep-set, too close together. Ginger hair. Everyone seemed to find gingers unattractive.

Every time my mum told me I was beautiful, the words were empty, almost insulting, a lie she didn’t know she was telling. I thought that hers was the only voice I’d ever hear those words in.

But then I did start to hear it in another voice. Even when my foundation had rubbed off, revealing blotchy and spotty skin and the shadows under my eyes, with my hair a mess, I still heard those words. I never believed them. If they were true, why had nobody else told me? I was always worried that one day he would finally see me for how I was and suddenly realise that he’d made a mistake.

And then one day, my fears came true. He didn’t want me after all. I had thought that when that day happened, I would go back to how I was before. Unwanted. Undesirable.

But I didn’t.

Society might tell me that I’m not beautiful. My hair might not be perfect; my eyes might seem small and hidden without makeup. My skin might not be flawless; my eyebrows might not be shaped perfectly; my waist might not glide inwards in perfect curves. But I am beautiful. In my own way. Everyone is.

There are so, so many things about myself that I don’t like, and whenever I used to look in the mirror I used to just see all those things I hated and I felt terrible. But now…

I like my smile. Sometimes it looks awful, goofy; way too big for my face and showing way too much of my teeth. But I also know that when I smile genuinely it lights up my face and reveals pure happiness; I know because I can feel it. It might not look it, but my smile feels beautiful. It makes me happy when I’m happy.

My hair’s not ginger, that colour that everyone seems to dislike. It’s golden. It sparkles in the sun, and changes colour in different lights. It makes me different. Unique.

I’m not vain, or obnoxious. I might sound it to people who don’t know me, but I promise I’m not. I’m not trying to say that I’m the most beautiful person in the world, because I’m not. No one is; that person doesn’t exist. You can’t compare beauty; you can’t compare something which is entirely constructed and has no fixed rules, since for every rule of beauty, there are a million exceptions. Billions.

And so after nineteen years, I’ve finally realised within myself that true beauty doesn’t really exist except as something to strive for but never really reach. That is, unless you embrace who you are, and who you will always be. Beauty is a way of thinking, not a state of being.

Everyone can be beautiful if you can just trust, just know that you are, because you are. Trust me. Even if the people around you don’t say it, that doesn’t mean that they don’t think it, and, even if they don’t think it it doesn’t mean that you aren’t. One day someone will see you for what you are and you’ll see that if your beauty is true for even that one person, then it is true regardless of other people think. But until that other person, or people, comes along, you can be that person. See yourself for what you are.

So go, be beautiful ❤

 

No Notifications

I was feeling lonely this morning,
With no one for company.
So I sent some texts out to my friends
To stop me feeling lonely.

My lips turn up in a hopeful smile
As I go to find my phone.
Surely they’ve replied by now!
But nope… I’m still alone.
No notifications.

It’s been an hour! All three are busy?
But I have love to give!
Why are they all busy now
When… Oh. They’ve all been active.

They must have seen my messages;
I’m just not worth a reply.
It takes five seconds to type out to me
Sorry, I’m busy, but hi!

Or maybe they’re not busy.
Maybe they just don’t like me.
I’m boring, a chore, a task they’ll put off.
But they don’t know what’s in my head
When I’m so lonely.

No notifications.
Might as well say no friends.
You’re not worthy of being happy.
Not good enough.
Not for those on whom you depend.
They don’t need you.

No notifications.
When I do it’s a rarity.
No one wants to talk to me
Like I have no personality.
Like if they just gave me a chance
I couldn’t make them happy.
I might make them laugh,
Or be there when they cry.
I would love them endlessly
If only they gave me the opportunity.
All it takes is a simple text,
And I’ll be there for you.
My heart is easily given.
All it takes is a simple text
And I’ll never neglect you.

Stretching Elastic

I pull away from you, pulling, pulling, further. Away. The bond between us, connecting you and I, the one that will always be there, that cannot be erased, tightens. Pulls me back. It doesn’t want us to be apart.

Those memories keep us together. We will always be together, in those memories, at least. And as I try to pull away, they get stronger and stronger, tighter, tauter, like stretching elastic.

I am further away from you. I think about you less and less. I have other people who do want me, who I can talk to, who I can see. Time is passing, and I am healing, moving on from you.

But as I need you less and less, I want you more and more.

That bond is reaching its breaking point. If I keep pulling, it will either snap, and I will be free of you, or I will be sent flying back to you.

Let me in.

Make it so I can stop pulling. So we can be close, but not too close. So that our pain will heal, but our happiness remain.

This elastic doesn’t have to break. We don’t have to be broken.

Let me in.

Guilt

I am ridden with guilt and longing.

The breakup between my boyfriend and I got quite messy quite quickly. It’s my fault.

The breakup seemed to come out of nowhere – or rather, to me, it did come out of nowhere – and I just couldn’t understand that he didn’t want to be with me anymore. We both wanted to try to still be friends, but he wanted a break first. But I didn’t understand. I couldn’t comprehend that he was now not my boyfriend, that he would be just the same as everyone else to me, and that I would just be one of his many friends. We would have memories, of course, but the future between us was no different to anyone else. Having been so close the months we were together, with him becoming my closest confident, someone I felt no shame with, who I could open up to completely, who I had nothing to hide with, the idea of suddenly, out of the blue, not talking to him at all was something that my mind could just not cope with.

So I pushed him to talk to me, have little conversations over text, silly little chats which meant nothing but, to me, meant everything. Because it was him. Even if I couldn’t kiss him, stroke his hair, hold my hand against his cheek and stare into his amazing blue eyes – with little golden bands around the pupils which shone in the sunlight, making them so unique, so magical, so him – I thought that I didn’t care because he would still be there for me.

But after talking for a while, I realised that I had been lying to myself the last few days. I still wanted him. I wasn’t okay with breaking up. I needed him.

Continue reading “Guilt”

Just Friends

I long for the day when this heaviness will lift
When the pain will shift
Into happiness, into freedom, into joy.
When we can be friends, just friends,
And when we care for each other again,
And let the hatred and anger fly free.

Am I being naïve?
Maybe it will never leave.
Maybe I am dead to you and
Maybe one day you will be dead to me.
Maybe you’re right and we shouldn’t try,
Because I know that at times it will make us cry.
But I love you, and I need you,
As a friend, I now see.
I love you.
As a friend.
But do you love me?