A friend from my high school days just sent me this message…

Barbara Gromadzin Foreman July 28 at 2:47am
Larissa,
What you have posted lately (some removed right after writing it) made me think about how I remember you back then, which may in fact be different than how you remember yourself. You were always this intense light, this spark amongst the teen bullshit, that just seemed to burn so much brighter than your surroundings. I’m so saddened to see you being beaten down by the world and the parental forces that we so valiantly fought against back in the day. Fuck that shit! Don’t you dare lose that spark, that intense light that you probably didn’t even see within yourself (but was undeniable to anyone who knew you). That would be the true tragedy in this story.
Sent via Facebook Mobile

I’m not sure how to respond; it nearly made me cry. I’ve actually referred to myself as having a dim light few people can see, because I’m so shy it takes a bit to get to know me. However, when I speak of a dim light, I mean to cast a negative light on myself. A lot of people seem to like me, though I’m not sure why. I don’t have much to offer. I’m not funny, I’m quiet, and I’m definitely more of a listener. I’d do anything for anyone I care about, but that means nothing, if my company isn’t enjoyable.

I’ve been thinking about how baggers at the grocery store and gas station attendants seem to really like me (enough for one of them to give me a hug when I said I was moving), and it makes me wonder if I shouldn’t be so hard on myself. Barb’s message makes me wonder even more. It’s not even that I hate myself; I simply wish I had more to contribute in my friendships. What do people really get out of knowing me? A genuine friend, yes, but a quiet one. Perhaps Barb is right, and I don’t see myself the way others do, but when I look into the mirror, I see an obese loser, and when I interact with others, I worry that I’m not interesting enough.

Am I worth anyone’s time? I would like to think so, and Barb and others seem to think so, but I don’t really think so (if that makes sense). That’s a problem.

I wish I could regain my self-confidence. I wish I could simply be. What Barb wrote makes me want to examine myself. Perhaps I need to stop worrying about how I seem and simply be

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