I used to get picked on quite a lot as a child and even more in my teen years. I don’t reflect upon my high school years with happiness like many of my readers. In all fairness, I had a big mouth and not so big muscle to back it up. I spent many of my high school days being escorted from one class to another. The background on this is for another day, but it’s fair to assume I messed with the wrong dudes. I remember one particular incident because of the profound change it had, and still has on me. My friend and I pulled into the high school parking lot to pick up his brother after a football game. As I pulled into the my spot, I noticed some of the guys that had caused me trouble; and they noticed me. With the sound of The Clash (Should I stay or should I go?) ringing in my ear, I decided to stay. I got out of the car to a punch in my chest. Something in me changed. I didn’t snap and go crazy like on a cheesy movie. I realized, although it wasn’t pleasant, I handled it. I returned the punch to the side of his head. I’m not sure I caused him much damage either, but he wasn’t expecting it. Clearly outnumbered, and in serious trouble, I had nowhere to go. Instead of doom, however, we were simply asked to leave, which we kindly obliged.
We can choose to avoid pain and stay in the background or choose to challenge the causes of our pain and take control.