I grew up as the only girl in the neighborhood with six boys, five of them older. It was never a problem until the oldest one discovered that girls had cooties and, therefore, I couldn’t play with them any more. I cried my eyes out as I walked home and when my dad saw me from the front porch with tears streaming down my face, he ran over to see what was the matter.
When I told him what had happened, he laughed and I cried some more, but I’ll never forget what he said next: “Don’t worry, Julie…one day those boys are going to be coming to you like flies on poop!”
I looked at him and his big smile filled with such confidence in his statement and I was in complete disbelief, shock and maybe a little bit of horror. I bolted into the house crying even more because my dad just called me poop.
After he tried to explain his analogy to me and failed, he asked me to make a list of all the qualities I had that made me a good person that someone would want to be friends with. It’s an exercise that happened so often, he eventually typed up an index card with all my best qualities and had it laminated, so I would always have it in my backpack in case I needed a reminder of my awesomeness. On that note, kids are mean and, unfortunately, some kids never grow up.
While I have a better idea of who I am and who I’m not and, most importantly, who I want to be than when I was six, answering the question “Who am I?” is still ridiculously hard, but here goes….
I am ambitious. I am creative. I am curious. I am compassionate. I am adventurous. I am strong. I am opinionated. I am thoughtful. I am athletic. I am smart. I am flexible. I am determined. I am loving. I am loyal. I am hard-working. I am courageous. I am independent. I am authentic. I am helpful. I am talented. I am quirky. I am generous. I am passionate. I am brave. I am forgiving. I am driven. I am flawed. I am worthy. I am enough.
Most importantly, I am me and that is really all I need to be.
It’s taken me a long time to figure that out and realize that just because I strive to be a better version of myself today than I was yesterday, doesn’t mean I can’t be 100 percent happy with who I am today and confident in what I have to offer the world.
I am awesome. And, if someone can’t see that behind all the cooties, that’s their problem, not mine.
Julie is a self-improvement junkie who loves to travel, wear pretty dresses, eat big breakfast and watch all the sunsets. She’s been there and done that and sharing all her life lessons with you. Read more
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