I was the girl who was afraid to raise her hand in class even though she knew she had the right answer. I stashed trash at my desk to throw away as I walked out because I was too self conscious to walk in front of the class. I didn’t have friends that had the same lunch hour as me, so I sat in a bathroom stall and ate my lunch.
But around my family, around my friends, I didn’t care. I didn’t care about my size, my clothes, my hair and makeup. I was me. I was so talkative around my family that my mom and dad would say “Kara, you’re doing it” when I talked too much.
But…people change. Now, I don’t care. If you don’t like me, you don’t know me. I wear my heart on my sleeve, along with everyone else’s. I care so deeply for the people I love, the people I’ve briefly met, and people I don’t even know.
Sometimes I tell myself I wish I knew then what I know now. I wish I felt then how I felt now. But, if I did, would I be who I am right now, at this very moment? Absolutely not.
We make mistakes. We show up. We show out, just to show ourselves the good and bad parts of us. Do I have regrets? In theory, yes. But again, I’ve lived, I’ve learned, and I’ve changed.
People are shocked when I tell them the story about eating lunch in the bathroom. But, it is what it is. I’ve learned to be who I am and who I love to be. I am 100-percent me, and that is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.