Dear Mean Girls,
Thanks for making me the me I am today.
Well, I bet you never thought you’d hear from me. To be honest, I wouldn’t have thought you would either, but I got this prompt in my online Substack class. So here goes.
I remember you. Standing with a group of girls in a tight circle, laughing at the size of my legs compared to the girl standing next to me. I remember you inviting other girls to your birthday party (but not me) and talking about it in front of me. I remember your little, tiny feet and your cute clothes. Your perfect suntan and hair that fell perfectly into place. The way you looked walking arm in arm with your boyfriend, a boy I liked too, at school.
So, what am I thanking you for? All of that and more. You and others like you are at least partially responsible for the me I am today. Thank you for not taking me into your clique. Rejection pushed me outside your tight circle. Would I have worked so hard to make a place for myself if I didn’t have to?
Thank you for helping me see now when others hurt. Had you been kind to me I might never have noticed their pain. Thank you for making me the kind of person who loves the unlovely ones. The different ones. The kind who looks to see what others need that I can give. And thank you for helping me recognize (and avoid) other mean girls in any crowd I’m in. That one comes in really handy. As much as I like to think that we’re old enough to be past all that, we’re not. In fact, mean girls and boys have gotten meaner.
Thanks for helping me develop my superpower. Kindness. Because of you I am compassionate. I don’t want anyone to feel like I felt then. Not even you. So, I hope your life turned out all right and that you aren’t still as unhappy as I think you must have been to be so mean back then.
You may not remember me but that’s ok. Despite what you thought and said, I don’t need you to remember me anymore. I did ok. Better than ok, actually. I did things you never dreamed of doing. Things I’d never have done if it weren’t for you. So, thank you.I’m happy with the way I turned out. You can be too.