What I remember most about my childhood, is the overwhelming feeling that I didn’t belong; that I wasn’t good enough. For me, those feelings can be traced back to a series of bullying incidents that began when I was nine. The bullying lasted less than a year, but its after-effects would stay with me for a very long time. I had no self-confidence, no self-worth, and I suffered panic and anxiety attacks, almost daily. The simple act of speaking up for myself became a daunting, if not impossible task. As a result, I did my best to hide from everyone and everything; at first, in any empty coat room or quiet corner that I could find, then under an unruly mop of rock-n-roll hair, and finally, behind a caustic, self-deprecating sense of humor.
But that was then, and this is now. I’m happy to tell you that today, I no longer have any desire to hide. There’s no need, because I’m proud of who I am. I’ve learned that what we all have in common is greater by far, than anything our obvious differences might suggest. We’re all in this together, and each of us, every single day, has the ability to shine, and the opportunity to make a difference.
The world is waiting to hear from YOU. Say something.