People like me. I know that. They just don’t like me as much as they like other people.
It felt like that all the way through school. I would be talking to someone; laughing, having a great time. Then someone else would appear and I was invisible. They would wonder off and I’d be left alone. People went out without me, telling me I should have come when I wasn’t invited. People would name their best friends and my name was never said.
Friends I was supposed to walk to school with would walk right past my house because they had other friends who didn’t stop to wait on me. I could see them from the window, smiling and enjoying their new company. They didn’t even glance my way. Others would spend the week talking about the party at the weekend that I wasn’t invited too. Even during university it was always there. The niggling thought in the back of my head.
I was always the substitute until someone more interesting came along. Boys. Girls. Didn’t matter. I was always left on my own, wondering what the hell I was doing wrong.
I could never figure it out. I like myself. I have always really liked who I am. So why didn’t anyone else?
It would knock my legs from under me, threatening to crack my still developing self-confidence and making me question myself. Why was I the one left alone whilst they were out having fun? Why was I not good enough? Was I not smart enough? Not pretty enough? Not funny enough?
But I wouldn’t let it stop me. After every night spent crying over it in my room, I’d try again the next day. I carried on being me and as I grew and moved out of school, I learned how to be me and show it off – the rest of the world be damned. Somewhere along the line, it either stopped or I stopped noticing. Moving on from silly school politics helped. Developing closer relationships with new and old people even more so. Finding my first boyfriend who has now turned to fiancé who continually makes me feel like the most interesting person in the world probably did a lot of good too.
There will always be people that like other people better than me. That sting will always be there. woeful little girl wondering why she wasn’t invited when all of the other girls were. The quiet teenager who can’t understand why that boy likes her and not me. I like who I am and I am happy with where I am in life. When that feeling hits now, it hits hard. I’m hollowed out and left drifting, stuck to the spot so I don’t fall into the past. Just for a little while. Then I move on.
There are people who include me, who like me and who love me. And for some people, I come first.