My life is shadowed by a W(ang).

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Every time I leave my house, I get to relive my High School experience.  My house is situated right next to the HS I went to, and it is literally unavoidable since I live on a cul-de-sac (how California) and can only exit one way.  Now, unlike most people, I loved high school.  I had a set place, great friends, was doing journalism and everything I loved (with the small exception of AP Calculus), and the good far outweighed the bad.  Reliving it isn't bad for me.

Except for one thing.  Unfortunately, one of the parts of the school I do see are the lower baseball fields (yes, my school had upper and lower fields), and it is the one place that makes me cringe.  Everything else I've managed to get over, but one thing will haunt me for the rest of my life.  I don't normally talk about this, but I'm hoping for some kind of release therapy to take effect in that once I talk about it more, it will lose its hold over me.

In 9th grade, my PE class was in the baseball unit.  I'm not a bad baseball player; I grew up watching and playing, I was the resident power hitter for my Parco in Italy, and I have (had?) a decent arm.  I was placed in right field because I don't have the reflexes for infield and I'm pretty good at catching pop fly balls.  The rest of my outfield was worthless because they were high.  Seriously.  Our center fielder was at the back of the field smelling roses (I am not making this shit up), and our left fielder decided he was tired and sat down, cross-legged, in the middle of the field (again, I'm a great story teller, but this is real).  Inevitably, someone hit a ball to left field, Sean watched it bounce past him, and then he just stared.  The entire team was hollering at him to go get it, but he just sat there.  He tossed his mitt in the ball's general direction though, so...effort?

Anyway. Long story cut short, our first baseman was an asshole.  In the interest of not revealing who said asshole is, his name wasn't Dustin, but it was that name if you replace the "D" with a "J."  And his last name starts with W, and ends in "ang", and yeah, I'm going to be haunted for the rest of my life by someone's whose last name is Wang and is also a colossal dick (ZING!)

For some godawful unknown reason to me, not Dustin but with a J "I'm a dick just look at my name" W(ang) starts hollering at me to go get the ball.  I'm deep into right field, why the fuck am I going to go get it?  The ball is so far gone the hitter was rounding third and the other players on the other field right next to us already had it and could toss it back to us.  I just stood there, partly because I was right and mostly to piss off JDustin.  The other field was very kind and tossed back the ball, except it landed in center field.  Since center fielder was still smelling the roses, my coach very nicely asked me to retrieve it since the rest of my team was worthless (his wording, not mine!).  So, like the good student I was, I hustled off to get it.

Well, apparently I was not hustling fast enough because Justin starts yelling at me to hurry up.  I toss the ball back infield, and as I'm going back to right field, I hear Justin joking with our second baseman and our pitcher: "That fat bitch coulda got it done faster if she'd just lost a hundred pounds. Maybe then she'd be good looking. Watchin those chopsticks bounce in her hair, she needs some damn Slimfast!"

...yeah.

I've always been a big girl.  All my life.  I've been an early developer, which is why I had all my wisdom teeth by the time I was 13, "become a woman" (Google it if you need to, but if you do, you're probably a boy with no sisters) by 5th grade, and have been 5'3" since the 4th grade.  I'm not morbidly obese, though my BMI does classify me in the "obese" category.  I'm...the small of the large, is the way I always say it.  And it holds true, in terms of shopping: I'm sliiiiiightly too big for the normal stores, but I'm too small for the plus-size stores.  It's incredibly frustrating, to be honest.

But the thing is, I've never really been bothered by my weight.  Obviously I know the health risks and in that way, I'm bothered.  But in terms of self-esteem and being uncomfortable...it's not been that bad.  I hit the usual bouts of doubt, but nothing horrid.  I've always been confident in my non-weight-dependable abilities (few as they may be)...sure, I couldn't trade clothes with friends, but I was always able to do all they were able to do.  I liked boys, boys liked me.  My more-than-average weight has never given me more-than-average problems.

Until that fateful baseball day.

And every day, I get to walk/drive by the place it happened, and every day I feel that same soul-crushing, gut-wrenching deflation of spirit, just a little bit.

Nowadays, it doesn't affect me as much as it did, and I've since reconciled with a lot of the demons that stupid boy created.  Everything isn't perfect, but...it's getting there, and I guess that's what matters.  Since that day, there has only been one minor setback, but they were stupid college frat boys in a bar--kind of discrediting in itself.  I don't mean to talk about this in hopes of pity comments or "woe is me" or fishing for compliments.  I just...while I was walking today, I got to walk past it all again, with the added bonus of being amongst high schoolers since the last bell had just rung.  I saw a boy throw a full gatorade bottle at a girl's car, splashing it with orange sticky grossness and laugh when she got out of the car to yell at him.  I walked past a group of 5 high schoolers and heard one boy call the other a "Mexican ass", while the other watched me walk past and I hear him say, "See that girl walkin'? I bet I could get a hot ass like that easy."  Which makes no sense since I have the flattest non-ass ever, but...you know, whatevs.

All I'm saying is...high schoolers can be cruel, and sometimes it stays longer than we want.  But eventually it fades, you realize the best, and really...I can lose the weight but he'll always be an asshole.  And at least my last name can't be substituted for "dick."  So there's always that.

2 comments:

Sue @ SimonsSistaSaw May 14, 2010 at 5:00 AM  

I can so empathise with you. Reading this made me think of a similar situation. Us humans can be quite the animals at times.

Melissa May 14, 2010 at 10:35 AM  

Wow, it's crazy the amount of times during this post I found myself thinking "me too! Finally, someone else who get it!"

Like you, I also felt like I really fit in at high school -- I was so content to be a band geek and I loved my friends and I only did things I loved to do so I never felt like I had to be someone else.

And also like you, I developed early (I "became a woman" in 4th grade, Idon'twannatalkaboutit, and I hit my current height in 5th grade) and I'm "the small of the large" (thank you for giving me a phrase to help define my body type, by the way) -- but I feel like it sounds like you have a much better self-image than I do.

Anyway, I HAD to comment and say: I get it! And I totally feel you.

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