I'm still trying to figure out my next writing project, as per my "alphabet days" a few months ago. For this week, though, I'm just going to write whatever keeps me up at night, which sucks for you because it's normally "sappy" and "deep" and "philosophical." Sometimes it's at length conversations I will have when I meet certain celebrities. Hope for these, these are funny.
Last night I kept thinking about the quote: "That which does not kill us makes us stronger." Spoken by Friedrich Nietzsche, but I am almost certain that I was thinking about that new Kelly Clarkson song. See, I told you this would get philosophical.
Then, I started thinking of all the times I was so embarrassed, I thought I was going to die. Everyone has been there, everyone has survived, most people move on. I'm working on it.
In fourth grade music, the teacher called on Marco, and either I was super eager to show everyone I knew the answer (probably) or I really misheard, but I thought he said "Barbara."So, in the middle of my answer, the teacher says, "That's right, but your name's not Marco." Fair enough. I don't even think my classmates cared, but I did. I still do.
In fifth grade, I was finally given my first chance to cantor a song for mass. I had been in choir for three years previous, but my singing was so terrible that I would never be allowed to cantor based on talent. Instead, masked by two legitimate voices of girls in the grade below me, both of whom would go on to join the elite choirs in high school, I was given the opportunity merely by showing up to practice every Tuesday and Sunday for three years. Of course, I announced the song at the wrong time, while the priest was sitting quietly on the altar. Needless to say, they sent music class Marco, who had a wonderful voice, to re-announce the song and cantor with us.
I have about twelve of these "traumas" that I return to about every other week. Obviously, I survived them. They did not kill me. Did they make me stronger? I'm still terrified of finding myself in similar situations, terrified of putting myself out there from time to time. I'm getting better. I used to replay the traumas every day, rather than every fourteen. Stronger, I guess.
There are other embarrassments, however, that I can't seem to shake - the times I did or said mean things to someone else. I am embarrassed at the way I acted, ashamed, really. Did these make me stronger? Yes, I am stronger because of these mistakes. I have learned from them, and I am so afraid of hurting anyone like that again, that I have changed my behavior. I have a long way to go, and I still mess up. I will carry the guilt with me, probably for always. I am not perfect. I will not be perfect. Perfect, no. Stronger, I guess.
Until tomorrow night.