Things Little Kids Say to You When You’re a Girl with a Buzz Cut

For those of you who don’t know, I’m spending my summer working at a camp. My regular hours are with 3-5 year olds, but I also have before and after care shifts occasionally that range from 5-14 year olds. I knew that some of the kids would be confused by my hair, but this summer has proven to me even more that kids are not going to hold anything back.

  1. Are you a boy or a girl?

This one I totally understand. For most kids, long hair is associated with girls and short hair is associated with boys. However, dressing like a girl (as much as my uniform allows me to) and having everyone use female pronouns around this person with practically nonexistent hair must be pretty confusing. Especially to the 3-5 year olds I work with. Usually, when I clarify that I am in fact a girl, they move on to other questions.

  1. Where did all your hair go?

Again, a pretty reasonable question. Some of them have the ability to understand that cutting all my hair off was a choice and something I did to help other people. More often than not, they give me some other comments about their opinions of my hair or their oh so creative ideas on how to “fix” my hair.

  1. I wish you kept your hair

See, I don’t understand this one because none of my campers knew me when I had long hair. So, basically they’re just irrationally upset about the lack of hair on my head…

  1. Do you want to use ­____ as a hat?

This blank can be filled in with basically anything they can find around them. The most common offer I have is their trash from snack time. Like, thanks for the offer, but I don’t think your fruit cup with a bit of juice still left at the bottom is going to fit around my head to function as a hat. Also, if I wanted to wear a hat, I would bring myself an actual hat.

  1. You look like you’re dying

How is one supposed to respond to this comment? Thank you? I’m sorry? Like, I get it, you’ve only heard of people with cancer shaving their head this short, but I just finished answering your questions about why I don’t have any hair and nowhere in that conversation did I say I was dying so maybe don’t say that… Oh well, my response ended up just being “well, I sure am glad that I’m healthy!” and the kid just walked away shaking his head… Did he want me to be dying? Well, I did just make him sit out so that’s a possibility.

  1. Your hair is kind of like a porcupine…but its soft

So, I don’t know of any small children that just casually walk up and pet porcupines, but they definitely walk up to pet my head. The second I sit down, I have at least one if not eleven children petting my head and raving over how it feels like a soft porcupine. Seriously though, I don’t think that half of these kids even know what a porcupine is.

 

Moral of the story is, if you’re not prepared to answer crazy questions or if you’re easily offended, maybe don’t work with small children when you are a girl with a buzz cut. However, it makes for significant, quality entertainment so it may be worth your while.

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Tired

It’s been awhile since I posted on here and there are a few reasons behind it. The biggest reason being the fact that I don’t know how to put the way I’ve been feeling lately into words. I’m still not sure how great this is going to be, but I’ll do my best to put this into coherent sentences.

I guess the best way to put this is I’m tired. I’m tired of being everyone’s last choice. I’m tired of people saying “well so-and-so couldn’t go so I thought I’d as you.” Like, wow, I’m honored. I’m tired of being the person who waits up until my eyes literally can’t stay open anymore for a call that was supposed to happen hours ago. I’m tired of doing everything wrong even when I try so hard to do it write. I’m tired of being the one to initiate all contact and plan all get-togethers. I’m tired of giving 110 percent while everyone around me is barely giving 10. I’m tired of hiding my own feelings and opinions so those around me can be happy and have their way. I’m tired of feeling like quite literally nothing I do is ever good enough. I’m tired. Physically and mentally.

So, yeah. I haven’t been posting much lately because I type for hours only to delete it all in the end. I haven’t been posting because I’ve been staying up until 1am waiting for people to call as promised. I haven’t been posting because I’m sick and tired of just about everything around me. I’m hoping this post will get me back into the swing of things. I’ve texted almost everyone I know asking for help with ideas of what to post and, hopefully, some new posts will be underway this weekend and I’ll be back to posting on schedule.

It Is What It Is

Just about anyone who knows me knows how deeply I feel. Whether it be feeling something towards someone, for someone, or about someone. I have always been overly sensitive to what someone might be feeling and my own feelings, in any situation, cut deep into my core and sit there, demanding to be felt. I grew up being called “sensitive” and “empathetic” with negative connotations behind them. I was always made painfully aware of how deeply I feel things and, until recently, I saw that as a bad thing. However, I have since come to realize that there’s no reason to think that the way I feel things has to be good or bad. It’s about what I do with those feelings that determines whether or not they’re good. For example, it’s the fact that I feel things so deeply that I have such a distinct urge to help people for my profession. My sensitivity to others’ emotions also forces me to feel their emotions for an extended amount of time even after leaving their presence. However, this is what helps me to be a good friend and helps me to remember to check in with my friends consistently despite my busy life. It allows me to understand what children are trying to communicate despite being unable to verbalize their emotions. My ability to be overly sensitive and deeply feel every ounce of pain, frustration, anger, joy, love, and excitement that the people around me are feeling has allowed me to have countless conversations with people who are differently abled than myself. This oversensitivity is the thing that makes me cry from frustration when I’m defending someone I care about. This ability to feel things deeply has lead me to have a profound love for a baby I haven’t met yet. When my niece was born 8 weeks early, I cried from fear for her health as well as tears of joy when I found out she was as healthy as we could hope for. And I can pretty much guarantee I will be holding back tears of joy and amazement when I meet her for the first time this weekend.

So, you see, I guess the point is that my oversensitivity isn’t exactly a bad thing. It is what it is. It is what I make it out to be. Sure, there are areas that people can make it sound negative, but, the reality is that, if I don’t let their definitions rub off on me and overtake the positive outlook I’ve found for myself, what others’ say doesn’t matter. What matters is that I make the most out of my traits. It only matters that I find my qualities to be desirable and positive. And, as long as I keep that positive outlook, other interpretations of my sensitivity or strong empathy make no difference. So, if you have a characteristic that has both positive and negative qualities to it, know that you are allowed to see it as a positive thing. You are allowed to ignore what others say and use that characteristic for the good you know you can make of it. So, it is what it is. Empathetic? Sure. Oversensitive? You betcha! And I can’t wait to show the world all the good that can come from those amazing characteristics.

A Letter to My Friends at Belmont

To my friends at Belmont,

Let me start by saying there are more things to thank you for than I can put into a general letter, but I’m going to do my best anyway. So, here goes nothing… Thank you for everything.

  • For keeping me on track. You never failed to keep me accountable for a multitude of things. Whether it be studying, working on a project, or doing homework. Even if it meant sitting with me and playing on your phone while I did my homework, you never failed to keep me accountable for getting all my stuff done. Let’s be real, I probably would have failed at least one of my classes without you.
  • For taking care of me. Whether it be a mental breakdown or that month where my body just shut down on me, you’re always there to help me out. Thank you for feeding me when I didn’t want to eat anything and hugging me when I needed it most.
  • For doing literally everything with me. Whether it be the aforementioned homework, errands, caf dates, grocery shopping, sitting behind a desk while I work, random meals out, adventures to stores neither one of us need to go, and just being there when I need you. I’m so thankful to know I am never alone because I have you.
  • For always listening. You know just about every inch of drama that happens in my life and you never fail to happily listen. I know I can always ramble to you about anything and have a listening ear.
  • For being just as strange as I am. All of our inside jokes are things no one will ever understand (nor will they want to!). Our conversations that we have just by looking at each other are priceless and the belly-aching laughs we have never fail to make my day.
  • For sharing everything. Whether it be your food, shoes, clothes (specifically sweatshirts or jackets because, let’s be real, I never think I’ll need one until we leave), or answers to the homework I forgot to finish you’re always willing to share with me.
  • For constantly encouraging me. You are always honest with me and tell me what I need to hear even if I don’t necessarily want to hear it. You remind me of the way I truly deserve to be treated and don’t let me settle for less. When I’m being over dramatic, I know I can count on you to tell me. You always know how to cheer me up when I’m upset or discouraged. I can always count on you to show me the bright side to the situation.
  • For never giving up on me and never letting me give up on myself. Even on the days where I felt like nothing was going right, you never gave up on me. When I seriously contemplated just dropping out of school and becoming a ghost writer, you told me all the reasons that I shouldn’t do that. Thank you for always helping me find the positives in life and in myself.
  • For just being you. I’m so so happy coming to Belmont lead me to being friends with you. I am so lucky to have you in my life and I can’t wait for the rest of this crazy college adventure with my best friend by my side.
  • For being just a phone call or text away during every break. Every time I have a stupid question, exciting news, or an encounter with some jerk at the grocery store, I know I can call you and tell you all about it. Even though summer is here and we’re all pretty far away from each other, it’s great to know that friends like you are just a call away. Thank you for always being up to talk about anything and everything and never letting distance get in the way

So Much More Than Numbers

I’ve noticed recently that a lot of people around me seem to believe the same thing: that they are made up of numbers. Whether those numbers be percentages on a test, price tags on clothes, pounds on a scale, or likes on a photo. We seem to have this mindset in our society that numbers such as these are defining factors to who we are as people. We have a habit of believing that the value of our clothes somehow helps determine our value as a person. We think that the pounds on a scale tell us how our beauty ranks. We tend to believe that our level of popularity on social media defines the quality of our relationships in real life. We declare our value based on the percentages we receive on tests and the GPAs on our transcripts. The thing is, we are so so wrong when we allow ourselves to believe these things. We are not made out of numbers. We are made of love, happiness, and the way we laugh. We are made of good memories, summer nights, and staying out past curfew. We are made of beautiful sunrises and sunsets, snowy winter scenes, and rainy days. We are made of hugs, smiles, and life lessons. We have so much more to us than numbers. If you believe nothing else, please believe this.

Dickens 412, Roommates, and Memories

It honestly blows my mind that the end of the semester is so close. It’s crazy to think that, only eight months ago, we were moving into this apartment knowing that it would be our home for this year. We turned blank walls and empty seats into a home. A home that I, in all honesty, cherished more than ever I thought I would.

I’m going to be completely honest: I had pretty low expectations when I moved in. I didn’t want to get my hopes up too high on the possibility that me and these roommates would all be best friends. We had no way to predict what our relationships with other roommates would look like. In all honesty, I was fully prepared for us to be roommates and nothing more. It didn’t take long for me to realize, however, that we were clicking. As unexpected as it was, I was so pleasantly surprised when I realized that the conversations we were having and things we were doing were more than just “roommate things”. This was friendship. True, honest, unfiltered friendship.

It popped up in my Facebook memories this weekend that, exactly a year ago, I met up with all of my roommates. These people -three of which were once complete and total strangers to me – are now some of my greatest supporters, my best friends, my family. I don’t know where I would be without them. This year has been full of losses, frustrations, illnesses, and overall craziness. These lovely human beings have kept me sane (as much as possible) for the entire year. I learned more about myself this year than I ever thought was possible and most of that can be attributed to the fact that I have lived with people who allow me to be myself without fail. They have let me be my true self even when I had no idea what that really meant. They’ve let me blab, rant, and make absolutely no sense all for the sake of (hopefully) coming to some sort of beneficial conclusion. No matter what it is, they have supported me one hundred and ten percent.

These people have driven me around Nashville for no reason, had deep and personal conversations at 3am, made me laugh till I cried, been a shoulder to cry on, dyed my hair, cut my hair, made me dinner, baked with me and for me, helped me with school, gone to intimidating meetings with me, given me hugs without question, and so much more. I don’t know how I would have survived the semester without them.

So, here’s to wonderful roommates, Dickens Apartment 412, and all the memories the two have brought. Thank you for teaching me more about true friendship than I ever realized was possible. The appreciation I have for my four fabulous roommates is more than what I can express through words, but I hope you all know how much you mean to me. Love you guys. Thanks for an amazing year.

Life Isn’t Always Easy…And It Probably Shouldn’t Be

Life isn’t always easy. In fact, it’s often quite the opposite. But maybe, just maybe, this journey we’re on isn’t meant to be easy. Maybe life isn’t about finding the easiest way to get from point A to point B. Maybe it’s about embracing the journey simply for what it is. Maybe tomorrow we’ll all be holding hands singing Kumbaya, but I highly doubt it. I would be willing to bet that, as life gets harder, we get stronger. We learn how to deal with the hardships life throws at us and face them with new outlooks. We learn to take on opportunities no matter how scary. We learn to listen to the advice of others even when we may not want to. We learn to work towards our goals and persevere through any obstacles we face. No one will be able to make your life any easier for you, but, as you grow, you become more able to get through the hardships and you learn to ask for support and help along the way. So, no, life isn’t easy. It never has been and it probably never will be. But, in all reality, should we even want it to be?