Learning to Let Go
It occurred to me recently that I actually have no idea who I am right now.
I USED to have a fantastic sense of who I was, so much so that I refused to deviate from the path that I (and others) had set out for me. Please, I could never be a leader, I could never write anything halfway decently, and I can’t wear crop tops because my boobs are too small and I can’t wear tiny shorts because I have too much leg hair and it takes forever in the morning to shave, I can’t get good grades in university, I can’t make new friends, I could never be interested in anyone else. And on and on the list goes.
This is Me
You may remember the video I shared a few weeks back from Healthy Minds Canada about Cynthia Foster, who recovered from bulimia. Although we released that video first, I was actually the first video subject.
This video was shot way back in January - hence the baby bangs, old glasses, and me referring to myself as vice president. It was ready a long time ago, but after filming Cynthia, we realized that we wanted the videos to look a little different. We wanted to make them more personal, with photos and videos, and we wanted to add facts and information so that people learned more. We wanted to make them longer so we could tell a more complete story.
And the first cut of my video just wasn’t the story I wanted to tell. The story I want to tell is less about the way that I am, and more about WHY I am the way that I am. Oftentimes, people don’t talk about the “why”, and that is especially the case when it comes to bullying - it’s dismissed as a typical childhood phase, something everyone goes through, something that usually doesn’t have a long lasting impact. It’s all over when you graduate.
But that’s not true, and that’s why I am the way that I am. So we recut the footage that we had in order to tell that story, and this is the result of that. Because it was filmed so long ago it’s not perfect, and I would probably say different things now, but I still stand behind the core messages of the video - mainly, that before dismissing a person, you should always ask why. Find out what’s bothering them, step into their shoes for a bit, even if perhaps they aren’t behaving perfectly at the moment. Most people are inherently good, so ask why and try to find that.
I had a great time editing it but now that it’s been released today - my last day as an intern - I have a hard time sharing it. I don’t know why really, I’ve said most if not all of this stuff in writing before. But it’s just different somehow in video form. More personal. The pictures and video from when I was a kid and in high school - even the ones that seem normal, I can see the story behind them, and I feel like now everyone else can see that too, even though that’s probably ridiculous.
I could just not share it, but that would defeat the purpose of all the hard work that Phil and I put into it, so here it is - my hope is not that you will understand ME better but that this example might help you to understand others in your own lives better.
Thank you to Phil for editing this twice, listening to me whine about the gratuitous bird and water shots in the first cut, attempting to blur out people’s faces even though it was hard and it looks hilarious, for not judging and treating me the same despite working so closely with things like clips where I inexplicably have objects thrown at me (??) and pictures where I possibly look the worst that I have ever looked in my entire life, and for listening to what I had to say and taking my opinions into consideration. And for picking me in the first place, obviously. Because I wouldn’t even have a last day if not for that.
I hope you enjoy the video and please share it if you think it might help others. <3
When I was 17, the hottest kid in the entire world was this guy I knew at Governor’s School (basically an academic summer camp funded by the state). I’ll call him Kevin because he was Irish and that seems like a good Irish name. He was really smart and popular and athletic, and he had the most…
This is nice. And by nice I mean sad and meaningful. But this is the kind of writing that I aspire to.