I was reading a post from Send Sunshine – Visit her Post
It got me thinking about just how important it is to explain to kids to be kind to one another. End this bullying crap once and for all.
I was criticized harshly as a child, I wasn’t able to do sporting events with the other kids, I couldn’t join in the lunchtime running games and I was always breathless.
Unfortunately, what kids and even adults don’t understand, they criticize.
In Year five I was admitted to hospital for a flu (mum called it a bug), my cousin announced to all the children in my grade that I had a bug and before you knew it, it was circulated that I “swallowed a frog!?” and I was “DYING!”. How does that even happen?
I received a HUGE bag of handmade cards from the class apologizing about being nasty and how special I was to them and begging me not to die!
I was in hospital fighting the flu, I was not aware I was going to die. So this caused a little bit of tension as you could imagine, I read the cards, each and everyone of them, even the ones from the kids that mocked me each day. Their words made me want to go to school.
Eventually I recovered and the doctor told mum that I needed oxygen full-time. I would need it at school and I would need it at night to sleep at night.
NO!NO! NO! I wouldn’t hear of such a thing, bringing the oxygen to school, even if it would make me better.I agreed to only having it at night.
I could only imagine what life would look like needing it on a full-time basis and it looked horrible. I was already struggling badly to have friends, carting a machine around would only make it worse.
Primary school was coming to an end and I needed to choose which high school I wanted to go to, I chose a school where most kids weren’t going, somewhere where I could re-invent myself slightly, somewhere where no one knew I needed oxygen.
I made a decision to eventually become a bully to protect myself from being bullied. I was going to be a tough “Bit*h” and everyone would be scared of me. It worked. (I’m not proud of this at all… but some people become bullies because they were bullied)
I was quick with my tongue and anyone who posed a threat I knocked them down real fast with words to avoid being the joke over anyone’s lunch. I had a lot of friends and when I realized I wasn’t getting a repeat of Primary school, I could take a breather from being so on guard. I became nice.
It was HORRIBLE being a bully! I Hated it! Knowing that words cant be erased and knowing you hurt someones feelings. Its exhausting!
Most people forgave me when I apologized, but some others wouldn’t accept the apology.
One day, years after school finished… I was on my daily walk with a neighbor (slow pace for me) and I saw some guys from my class when I was 11.
By this stage, I was 16 so some years had past, I hadn’t seen them for a while.
I called out “hello!” and most of them happily greeted me, but then the comment I wasn’t expecting came… “There’s that freak that cant breathe”.… It was as though I was knocked in the guts and felt winded! He didn’t stop either, he had his friends stop greeting me because I was a freak. I had to walk away immediately to make him stop, I couldn’t handle hearing the laughs he was receiving from his audience.
I had no witty responses, I had nothing to say except cry.
I walked home crying the whole way and I was inconsolable. I wasn’t a freak, I needed oxygen, my lungs don’t produce enough on their own.
That day made me realize just how cruel some people could be and how important it is to be kind to people, some people need it so much.
I now have a child of my own, I am VERY against bullying and I explained to him just how important it was to be kind to others.
Lives can be destroyed and people are left wounded as a result of being bullied.
Thankfully, today, I am surrounded by people who don’t see me as a freak because I cant breathe, I am surrounded by love.
“Our life and our past events shape who we are today” – oxygen4theJourney