Saturday, July 02, 2005


please like me!

So. Today I stopped in front of my house to grab something and K was with me, she wasn't wearing shoes. She got out of the car on my side, because she didn't want the people outside across the street to notice her lack of footwear. Full and comfortable and serene in my 22-year old wisdom, I scoffed "hah! who cares what other people think!"

oh wait. I do.

I used to be so afraid of what other people thought - during the middle school years, especially. I was afraid that my jeans were too short (oh wait, they were) and was convinced that everyone around me thought/knew that I was the biggest dork. Why was I a dork? Because I babysat and didn't like to go out? Because I had a perm? Because I liked to read? Why didn't I believe in myself? The fondest memories I have of are people being nice to me, and demonstrating through one way or another that they thought I was okay.

Generally, my area of insecurity was, and still is, how I look. I don't think I really care if people think I'm dumb, because I feel fairly confident in my intelligence. Maybe that's a mistake, but oh well. In high school, girls were a bunch of sticks, so I was afraid that I looked too fat. Whenever we had no uniform days, people would be like "wow, did you lose weight?" So I guess I did look chunky in it. But that only made me look better on those non-uniform days, so it worked out...

In high school, I found this really cool dark red leather jacket at my grandparents' house. I wore it to school the next day, and this witch of a girl, a supposed friend, said "THAT is the ugliest jacket that I have ever seen." I gave her a dirty look and pretended that I didn't care. Sticks and stones. But guess what - I never wore the jacket again.

I think "hey, I want to look good. is that being afraid of what people think? Am I another COG IN THE MACHINE?!" Nope, and there's definitely a difference between looking good/trying to impress and being afraid of what people think. If I want to look good, or if I'm wearing some quirky shirt or belt or shoes, I'm doing it because I like what I'm wearing. And yeah, I'll feel good if someone compliments me. But if it comes down to looking at my closet, practically panicking over the grey sweatshirt vs. the green zip-up sweater (casual vs. the mom look), - and I secretly want to wear the green sweater, but don't want to be a nerd - it's that I'm afraid of what people will think.

Before classes began freshman year, there was this "game night" in the now-defunct Ratt. I remember being in my dorm room with my older brother, going "WHAT SHOULD I WEARRRR?" I wasn't satisfied with anything, and I remember that I chose olive green capris and clunky brown sandals, still dissatisfied with the end result. Both items are long gone to goodwill, but the memory of myself fidgeting in those clothes, and the insecure feeling that accompanied it, lurks as a reminder of how not to be.

All that anxiety was for nothing. Hi. 1) it was the ratt. 2) I stayed there for 10 minutes, then I realized that I was having a miserable time and went back to my room. 3) it was dark and crowded. No one could see my clothes anyhow.

The other day, I met up with some middle school people for the first time since...oh, middle school. I called E, and said "I was the biggest dork in middle school. I have this ONE TIME to make up for a THOUSAND bad impressions!" I can still hear her cracking up in my ear - because she knew exactly what I meant.

What the heck? I was wearing the same outfit that I had so confidently worked in D.C. two weeks before. How about having some faith in me and who I am. And honestly, if I'm good enough for my family, for my friends, for the random non-english speaking men who hit on me when I'm trying to buy food at food courts, I should certainly be secure enough to hang out with some people that I kinda knew eight years ago.

I can pretend all I want that I don't succumb to peer pressure - but the next time I'm staring at my closet, or rifling through my clothes, convinced that everything I have is ugly or not cool enough - I'll know that my seventh grade self is back in action...

and I'll have to execute order 66.

Crazy Meg. You are a beautiful young woman, and I've never known you to dress poorly. And I love you because you are such a dork.

RE: that girl who made fun of your jacket half a decade ago... you should track her down and slash her tires. She'll never see it coming...

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