So what happened?
I haven’t thought about the actual beginning in so long that I’d almost forgotten it.
I haven’t. Getting ready to write it down is killing me. It hurt.
First I’ll say that in the grand scheme of things, it’s a small thing. I hate that so much and it makes me incredibly angry. Taken by itself, this was a very small incident that should have been forgotten by me within a few years or should at least have become a funny little story for me to tell. Now I’ll say that this was devastating to me and changed so much and and I’m sure it’s had a profound impact on my life. How insane is that? Something potentially humourous or at least forgettable could have affected the direction my life would take and the person I would become. (I don’t know who I was going to be. I am sure though that the person I am keeps in mind how I was treated and has adjusted what I do to make sure that I never do what they did.)
I was at a house party. I don’t remember who’s party and I don’t remember who I was there with. What do I remember? I was in the bathroom and in the process of pulling my pants and boxers up, effectively naked from the waist down. Someone opened the door and started to walk in, apparently I had neglected to lock the door. They backed out quickly, but had clearly seen me in all my glory. I don’t remember if I ever knew who it was. That was it. Sort of.
I discovered, the next week at school, that this was big news. It seemed to me that the entire school population had heard something about me at the party. I’m sure I tried to explain it away. I don’t think I was particularly upset at first and probably tried to laugh it off. I don’t know that the rumours would have survived long on their own, but they found a Champion. One who made sure that they stuck around. I knew who he was. I’ve never forgotten him and even creep him online at least once a year.
To me, he embodies everything that is wrong with people and I think that I will always harbour a hatred for him.
I’m ok with that.
Walking through the halls I’d suddenly hear someone make a comment and then laughter. I’d find notes taped to the bathroom mirrors or doors. Comments would be made under breath during class as well. I was sure that everyone was laughing at me.
It eventually went away but school was never the same. I thought that even if no one was saying anything, they were at least thinking it. I’d lost all my trust for the students as a group. Sure, there were individuals with whom I was friends and others that I had no issue with, but as a whole the student body sucked. I feel much the same way, for different reasons, about people. Individual people can be amazing, but people as a group are generally pretty awful.
I’m not sure that I’m up to the task of letting you know how I felt. I couldn’t stand being at school, surrounded by people (even just a few) who thought nothing of saying and doing things just to hurt another person (me). They were callous and thoughtless. I couldn’t understand it. I still can’t. I had never done anything to anyone. Suddenly, who I actually was didn’t matter. That had always mattered to me, who I was and who other people were. I had travelled the world with my parents. I had seen, first hand, cultures that some of my class mates didn’t know a thing about. I had seen amazing and wonderful things. I knew people, literally from across the globe. I had something to say and things to share. Now, I was just the kid from the party.
I’d been reduced.