I was teased a lot as a kid.
I was short, very skinny and extremely hyper (when Oprah ran a special on Attention Deficit Disorder, several friends called to say I had ADHD 🙂 ).
But something happened late in my teen years. I grew overnight to 5’11”, put on 30 pounds of muscle so I was trim instead of skinny, and calmed down. I started dressing more stylishly. Even my facial features changed (Wife M looks at pictures of me and says she can’t believe it is the same person). Personality wise, I become less impetuous, and my tolerance of others improved. Suddenly, some of the girls who had teased me as a kid were asking me out in college, and I was approached by strangers. All that has no meaning now, except it is much better memories than the ones I had where I was teased, and it has given me a lot of confidence in myself as I age. In the early years, I oversteered – I became a little cocky. But after a few years that too calmed down into quiet confidence, and then I met my future Wife M.
But my point is this — if life had been taken away at 10, 15 or even 20 or 25, I’d never had a chance to change, to evolve, not only looks wise but personality wise (I am a much wiser person I think then even in my 20s). My life would have been — and =eople would remember me as — a small, opinionated, high-strung, homely kid with glasses.
It is such a gift to be given a long life, to change and evolve, to grow as a person. Not everyone gets that chance. So I am very grateful. And how many kids or young adults have died who didn’t get a chance to evolve. Which is one of the many reasons I love the idea of forgiveness and thinking the best of young people, and why our incarceration and imprisonment of so many young men and women is devestating, and one of many reasons of why wars are so tragic.