Saturday, February 27, 2010

Cheeeesy story.

I've forgotten why I should be nice to people. Most of the time it doesn't seem to make any sort of difference and I usually feel embarrassed I talked to the lonely looking kid and then he seemed to not want to associate with people, or held the door open for the person who didn't say thank you, or weeded the flowerbed for my mom and she didn't even notice, or when I hugged the girl crying in the bathroom and then never spoke with her again. A lot of the time it just feels safer to pass them by and let someone else deal with it. Sometimes it feels safer to be concerned with my close friends only. 

 I go to a school where there are thousands of students and I don't stand out at all, I am invisible. I want to talk but I feel like I physically can't... I don't know why. It terrifies me. Though I want to be loved. I see the other students talking, hugging, laughing, telling secrets, walking to class in groups, talking to friends on cell phones... and I desperately want that. I want to belong. I want someone at that school to genuinely care about me and me to care about them. All I want is one really good friend. I come home and Camille talks about all of her friends (she is so popular haha) and now even Stephanie shares those friends with her. And I feel left out. And I get on the computer because it's the only contact I have with my old friends on a regular basis... but I have lost more than half of those people. And I rarely see the other ones.

Along with loneliness, I feel so unintelligent. I get such low scores on my tests and I am trying so hard... It's so frustrating. Everyone else seems to be able to handle it. It's just little me who can't be that smart. I have to practice speaking italian to two other girls for an hour every week and when I do, they have to correct everything I say. I know they are trying to help. But it makes me feel more stupid. It kind of feels like I am drowning... in knowledge. It's going over my head and I'm not absorbing most of it. 

So today, I was feeling particularly stupid and small and unimportant and very very lonely. And I studied italian so hard last night. Then I went to my practice speaking... and I said everything wrong. And the other girls seemed to understand it so well. And I had to keep myself from bursting into tears. I managed to hold it in though until the hour was over. And as I walked through the hordes of students I started to cry but I didn't want people to see so I put my hood up and headed for the bathroom. And I knew what would happen.

So I rushed into the bathroom ready to just let the tears come and then leave like usual. But then a grad student that I sort of knew came in because she had seen me crying. And she asked if I was okay and immediately gave me a hug. Then she started telling me about how she felt exactly the same when she was in college and still does in grad school even though she is over 50 years old. She told me that school doesn't define who I am (amazingly enough she completely guessed that I was feeling this way about school) and that no one gets good grades in generals because they are really hard. And she explained that she is a good mother, a good friend, she's learned to be a nice person, and more things that are more important than her C in American Heritage and that I can do those things too and they will be much more important to me and others. And she didn't leave me until I had calmed down and stopped crying.

And I realized. What if she'd been too afraid to help me? Afraid of what I thought? Or that I wouldn't thank her? Or that I wouldn't want to talk to anyone? Then it would have been like every other lonely time crying pathetically in the bathroom. But all I needed was a hug and someone to care. And this practically complete stranger came in and treated me like I was her  friend or something even though she's way older than me. And I did feel better after that, the day got progressively better and I was just happier. She didn't change anything about me, or about my lack of friends or my grades in school. But she came and loved me when I felt like no one did. And that's all I needed to make it to the end of this awful, awful, long week. And I don't think she even knows how much that meant to me.

And so now I remember why I need to be nice to people. Even if they don't seem to appreciate it... I don't know why they are the way they are or why they act how they do. I haven't lived their life. And maybe all they need is someone to be nice to them. And that's easy, so why is it so hard? But I think it's probably more important to just love people than to be socially normal or acceptable to them or others. So now that I remember that, I want to be more aware of things like that and to help whenever I get the opportunity and to not be afraid. 

It was just a nice little reminder.

No comments: