My self-given nickname is chicken shit.
I'm afraid of everything, and most of the time it's for no reason whatsoever. But lately, and quite frankly since middle school, my phobia has been guys. Like I said, this stems back to when I was in the 7th grade. I had the biggest crush on this kid named Paul--no pseudonym used because to this day, I think he is a total jerk. It makes life easier, even if a part of me knows it's wrong.
Well, granted, I was a total dork in grade school, and that carried over to both middle and high school. And, for serious, I'm not the cute dorky genius type--I was the awkward, bucked teeth, giant pink glasses, bad hair, weird voice, complete loser dork-type, who barely had friends. Yeah, that girl--that was me. And I had this huge crush on the school jock who had the most beautiful eyes, and well, other than that he was average and ordinary, but this was middle school people--please! Damn hormones.
So, yeah, in addition to being this huge dorkapotamus, a little known fact about my childhood is that I had scoliosis, and when I was 12 I had a spinal surgery. 2 titanium rods fused to my spine, great fun. But actually, I kind of like the rods. They were my savior in that miserable portion of my life called "middle school" Before the rods, I had to wear braces--no joke--to school. So think of dorky little me with my big pink glasses, bucked teeth, bad hair, weird voice, all girdled up in some awkward position; then having to rip those braces off in the middle of class because I could barely walk in them, let alone breathe.
In addition to that, I was not "allowed" to carry a backpack. Because of this, my loving mother ever-so-thoughtfully went out and bought me a full-size luggage roller to cart around. Yeah...
Needless to say, it's no wonder no one wanted to associate with me, but the point of this flashback of mine was to get to the point of my guy-phobia. My had-been crush and I met in the library, and I'm not sure if I'd been staring or what not, but he stopped me on my way through the library *gasp* and told me he didn't want anything to do with me *bullet to the heart*
I'm not even sure if anyone was around, maybe a person or two, but it felt like the entire school was watching, and I still can't get over it today. My world was shattered, and even today I still feel like that dweeb-- totally transparent in my crushing for Mr. Jerk-Perfect.
The last time I remember seeing this kid was a few years later, maybe right at the start of high school, at one of my sister's concerts. I was wondering the halls, bored, and there he was approaching me!
Well, I imagined he was going to apologize for being a complete ass, but the dork in me didn't have it in me to stick around. I threw my hands up and walked away before he'd said anything more than "hey."
To this day, I wonder what he might have said--if anything. He probably doesn't have a clue about how I felt, or why I blew him off that night. And I know it's childish, and stupid, but I hope he felt the same way I did--even just a little bit. Still, I wonder what he would have said.
Regardless, that fear of rejection and "I'd rather not know" attitude has plagued my lovelife ever since. I'm still that chicken-shit dweeb, that would rather run away and not know, than have my heart broken. Today that is more clear than ever.
I started my job last year, and while the majority of the people I work with are oldER and or female, there haven't exactly been many people my age to connect with. There was, however, this one guy who was pretty young, and pretty cute. But I distanced myself because work-place romances are BAD. And everyone always says not to bother--they only end badly. I'm way too "smart" to make that mistake, I tell myself. In my head, though, I can't help but wonder.
Every day he would always be smiling, and he was always saying hi to me and everyone he met--he was like me, before the accident. Just plain chipper--a rarity in high school IMHO.
Well, I went through a rough patch, to say the least, and while I was struggling to just make it through the day smiling was the last thing I could think of doing. Still he greeted me, happily, and ask me how I was doing. Before the accident, I would have said "Super" or "Just dandy." We'd exchange jokes or just plain laugh at each other. But after the accident, "how do you do" was always replied to with a grunt or groan. I was miserable.
Well, this year, I was surprised to see this teacher had disappeared; moved, transferred, whatever. He was gone, and for the first few weeks of school I felt like a complete jerk for never explaining my "bad mood." Half the people I work with didn't even realize I was in an accident, most thought I'd been fired or had quit. I don't know, I just had that same feeling of regret with Paul. That sucky, "What if?" feeling.
Well, surprise! There he was today at school, checking in with some old colleagues. At first I didn't recognize him as he'd shaved off all his hair. So I walked right by him, slightly wondering, but not sure enough to stop. Towards the end of the day, there he was (definitely) across the hall. I was tempted to say hi, but he was already talking to someone else, so I didn't stop. Had to get my student right to work to meet a quickly approaching deadline. Then, there I was, pathetic old me, wondering if he saw me. Wondering if he cared enough to still say "hi." (Not that I would, because I'd been so depressing the last time he'd seen me)
So that was it. Then he was gone, and chicken-shit me is still left wondering.