When I was seven, they told me that I could be anyone I wanted to be.
When I was fourteen, I found out that simply wasn’t true. I wasn’t particularly pretty; count prom queen out. I wasn’t particularly charming; count president of any organization out. I wasn’t particularly funny; count class clown out. I wasn’t particularly sporty. Or sporty at all, actually. I wasn’t particularly sociable; you can reasonably count me out for everything, in fact. But I thought that maybe I could be the smartest.
I guess that’s when I started acting dumb.
See, there’s always a winner. I, unfortunately, am not a winner. When I decided to be the smartest, it was okay because people would pretend to like me for the sake of my brain. They’d let me help them with their French and algebra homework. Then my breasts dropped in and my hair grew out, and suddenly my face wasn’t so bad. So I was suddenly in the wrong mold altogether, so they stuck me with a jock and put me on Homecoming Court, and that was supposed to fix it.
Until it didn’t.
Because I still wasn’t particularly sociable or funny or charming. I was just me. And that wasn’t enough to hold the position that my face and body warranted; not to say that I was absolutely outstanding in either respect. Just above average for my school.
I went back to my studies, and eventually found someone who could deal with my moods and thoughts and problems. He could calm down my temper, force me to let go of stress, and even make me feel happy. I didn’t feel so awful about my scars anymore— inside or out.
I forgot for a little while that the odds weren’t stacked against me, because for once he made me feel like they weren’t. Yet, behind everything sweet that he can tell me, I am still not a winner. I’m not going to be the smartest or the most hard-working; I’m not the nicest by a long shot. I don’t know if he’ll stay with me long enough to keep me even a little sane; and I guess I’ll probably lose the desire to win after I lose my sanity. Where will I be then?
I’m not anything, really.
And that just doesn’t feel so good.