“Now repeat after me- I will never be as pretty as Angie and Lily.”
“I don’t want to say that,” I was confused. Why would I repeat this?
“Come on Yetti, it’s a game!”
“But I don’t like this game.”
This went on for what seemed like hours in my little mind, but eventually Kacey got her way. I repeated the words under my breath, not sure why I was saying them or why I was asked to say them.
These type of acts went on for a while. If I wasn’t reciting my new daily “affirmation”, I was having my face painted white or pink to make me prettier, or being forced to “try out” to play with them while we attended summer camp. They were the only other girls there that summer. Being that I couldn’t have been more than 5 or 6, I never really realized that I was being bullied. They weren’t outright mean but they weren’t necessarily subtle in their thoughts of me being inferior. Well, maybe not Angie, we were the same age. But to the other two, I was younger, I was naive and I just wanted to play.
This went on for the summer until a teacher’s aid my mum used to drop home picked up on it. As the face painting began, she heard me recite the words of the “game” and the next thing you know, Kacey, Angie and Lily were apologizing. She washed my face, gave me a talk I honestly do not remember, and then we played together. We played together almost every day until I was removed and forced into a new school, where I was bullied to no end during school and after school-care. But that’s a story for another day.
I know you’re all probably thinking, why would you share such a terrible story, but trust in your vitamin, I have good reason. I chose to share this story because it was something I blocked out. Up until a few weeks ago with a session of hypnosis and EMDR, I had no recollection of this event and a few others. It’s incredible what the mind does in order to make sure you “recover” quickly or make sure you forget a certain incident. But it’s incidents like these that somehow shape who your are, impact you daily thought process, create your internal belief system. I had been practicing negative affirmations before I even knew what positive affirmations were. This somehow became another rule within my mind, that I wasn’t enough or prettier than [ fill in the blank ]. But now knowing where certain thoughts and behaviors come from, it makes it a little easier to correct them.
What’s your story from the 90’s?
*Names have been changed. Although, I’m sure my mum will figure out who is who.0