It is recess time and everyone in my fifth-grade class is anxious to get outside and play, including myself. There is laughter around me, of kids having fun, as I’m trying to swing as high as I can. When I finally stop swinging I hear a girl calling my name. I face in the direction of the noise and see the boy that I have a crush on next to the girl, “S,” that yelled my name. The chain of events to follow after that has shaped the way that I am and didn’t even realize it.
S: “Damaris do you really think that “M” likes you? He doesn’t think you’re pretty at all, he likes me instead because I look better than you.”
Me: *stays silent*
S: “He’s my boyfriend now, not yours. He will never be yours.”
She then proceeds to jump on top of him (like a piggyback ride) and makes a show in front of the school yard so everyone around my vicinity sees it and laughs.
I am so embarrassed and rush to the nearest safe haven where I can wipe away my tears. I remember getting up that morning and wearing my Sunday best for the new week at school. I had styled my hair with pigtails and I felt so pretty.
I didn’t know how naïve I was at the time – here I was thinking that I was such a beautiful person that day because I finally achieved a new perspective on what it meant to be a fifth grader in the community that I was in; after having finally felt like I was settled in from all the moving that my parents did.
I really thought, up until that point, that I was someone that could be considered pretty.
My whole worldview collapsed that day and I resolved to be more guarded with my heart and not trust anyone. Ever.
This past week I learned what it meant to renew your mind, to have Jesus come into our hearts and clean out the gunk that has been hidden away from years of ignoring it. Something triggered this memory and it kept on coming up during my prayer time and I had to let the wound be exposed to myself and cry it out. Even as I’m writing this post, I still have tears from the hurt and the embarrassment that I felt that day, long ago.
I asked Jesus where He was during this time and it was in the form of my teacher, Mrs. F. I had forgotten this teacher until the day I asked the Lord to reveal himself during that day. She told me, “Damaris, don’t ever cry over a boy and don’t let others tear you down. You are a beautiful young lady and I know that you are going to do great things.”
I can’t say that I haven’t cried over a boy since then, but I can say that I am now realizing my worth and am on my way to do great things, all for the glory of God.
I have had to forgive the girl over this situation, fairly recently, but I held so much anger towards her after that day.
I would like to say that things like this don’t affect us into our adult life, but they follow you around until you learn to deal with it.
I am so thankful for the healing that Jesus provided for this memory. It was all triggered by something that was not even related to the day in particular but it made me realize how broken and fragile I am.
I know that there are moments when I have to be strong, but I get tired of being strong.
I get tired of having to fend for myself.
I get tired of feeling alone.
I get tired of thinking that I will never be pursued by a guy that is fit to care for my heart.
I get tired that I overthink things.
The only thing that is holding me together is Jesus and I know that in His arms I can seek refuge. I can feel the love that He has for me because He displayed it on the Cross some two thousand years ago.
I know that things happen for a reason, and our past is redeemed at the Cross, by the action of undeserving grace. Will I ever see those people again; I’d be lying if I said that I was looking forward to running into them. Yet, I know that if I do, I can say that I have forgiven them and they no longer have a stronghold in my life. I have to choose to forgive people every day. There are days when I don’t want to, but I know that if I have been forgiven much by God, how can I not forgive those that have done wrong to me?