Sunday, June 19, 2005

The Real Me

I’ve always been described as shy.

I was the one who would sit in the back of the room praying that the teacher wouldn’t call on me because that meant I would have to speak. I was the one who constantly had her nose shoved into a book and who turned bright red when I was around a boy that I liked.

It’s miraculous that I wasn’t picked on. I was never in the popular crowd yet I wasn’t considered a nerd. I was in between and had a group of friends who each brought something unique to the circle.

I was the one who brought a book to prom.

I did this because I knew school dances could grow boring so I figured I’d grab the book and read a few chapters out back. I did at one point. I had only come to this particular prom because a friend wanted me to. So while she giggled and flirted with her latest crush I snuck outside of the building and started to read by the light flickering in a lamppost. A teacher walked past me and peered closer, as if in disbelief.

“Are you reading?” he asked me, eyes wide.

I nodded. “It got pretty dull in there. The music, it’s not my taste.”

He stared at me for a few seconds (probably trying to figure out if I was high) and then walked back inside.

And for the record, no, I wasn’t high. I have never experimented with drugs because I didn’t see the point. I once was around a group of people who pulled out a bag filled with white powder and I watched as they rolled dollar bills and inhaled. I was offered a try and I declined with a shake of my head.

“No thanks,” I told them. “I like my brain cells.”

My high school years were nothing spectacular. I dated a few guys and was even lucky to fall in love twice. I decided to join drama class in hopes of breaking out of my shell. When I had to go up on the stage and perform, it did cause me to get sweaty palms and feel the urge to get sick. I never did though. I’d always took a deep breath and get the job done. I was even in a few school plays.

I’m still shy today. I’m still that gawky girl who can’t seem to walk that great in high heels. I’m still the one that turns bright red if I’m around someone I like and I’m still the one who would rather leave the house in sweats rather than dress up to be noticed.

My dream is to have my novels published. Maybe it’ll never happen. But I know that I have to try. For years I made up excuses as to why I couldn’t send my novel out to agents. But then, as I sat typing my latest novel I thought, “What if I keep making excuses? What if I wake up and my entire life has passed by without taking a chance?”


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