The Names You Call Me Only Make Me Stronger

The Names You Call Me Only Make Me Stronger

Words hurt, people are mean, and bullies suck.

Fat. Cankles. Ugly. Nerd. Freckle-Face. Ginger. Slut. Jesus-Freak. Rich. Annoying. Stupid. Weird.

Words hurt. People are mean. Bullies suck.

Growing up, I definitely did not receive the award for being the cutest or prettiest girl in school, or at least it didn't feel like it. I had short red hair, a face full of freckles, braces, and overly large feet. People called me names. "freckle-face" and "ginger" were words I heard daily. After school I would come home crying to my mom. She tried to help. She told me I was beautiful. She said the people calling me names were just mean. I wanted to believe her, but I couldn't. I felt ugly, defeated, and alone.

Words hurt. People are mean. Bullies suck.

In high school, things were different, but they weren't necessarily better. Yes, I had more confidence, but I still wasn't genuinely happy. Because I live on a farm, I was considered rich. Because I spoke openly about my love for God, I was considered a "Jesus-Freak". I was hurt, angry, and alone.

Words hurt. People are mean. Bullies suck.

In college, I gained weight. People noticed. Some called me fat, others made fun of my "cankles". When I looked in the mirror, I saw a sad girl who believed in the hurtful words others said about her. I felt disgusted, unconfident, and again, alone.

Words hurt. People are mean. Bullies suck.

So what.

A few months ago something clicked inside of me. I'm not sure what it was or why it took so long, but it did. One morning I woke up, looked in the mirror, and I realized I had to change. I could not continue to be this unconfident, depressed girl anymore. I didn't want to feel fat or ugly. I didn't want to feel alone. I want you to know that my mindset didn't change over night, it took months to get to the place I'm at right now, but let me tell you, I've never felt better.

For me it started on the outside, I joined Advocare and began to learn how to eat healthy and exercise properly. I met a community of wonderful people who helped me realize that these changes need to be for myself and only myself. As the weight came off, my confidence went up. I began to feel beautiful on the outside, which in turn, helped me to feel more confident on the inside.

Call me selfish. I'll tell you I finally have my priorities straight.

Call me a "ginger". I'll tell you my red hair is rare and beautiful and I will not change it.

Call me "freckle-face". I'll tell you I'm lucky because I've been kissed by angels thousands of times.

Call me a nerd. I'll happily go back to studying to better my future.

Call me a "Jesus-freak". I'll smile and tell you that Jesus loves you.

Call me weird. I'll tell you I'm just having fun.

Call me ugly. I'll tell you I'm beautiful.

Call me whatever you want, I don't care. I hate to burst your bubble, but your words don't hurt me anymore, they only make me stronger.

To the bullied: Show them that you are better. Show them that you are confident. Show them that you are stronger. Show them that you are not alone. Show them that the words they say about you don't define you, but empower you. Show them that bullies suck.

Cover Image Credit: Unsplash

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8 Reasons Why My Dad Is the Most Important Man In My Life

Forever my number one guy.

Growing up, there's been one consistent man I can always count on, my father. In any aspect of my life, my dad has always been there, showing me unconditional love and respect every day. No matter what, I know that my dad will always be the most important man in my life for many reasons.

1. He has always been there.

Literally. From the day I was born until today, I have never not been able to count on my dad to be there for me, uplift me and be the best dad he can be.

2. He learned to adapt and suffer through girly trends to make me happy.

I'm sure when my dad was younger and pictured his future, he didn't think about the Barbie pretend pageants, dressing up as a princess, perfecting my pigtails and enduring other countless girly events. My dad never turned me down when I wanted to play a game, no matter what and was always willing to help me pick out cute outfits and do my hair before preschool.

3. He sends the cutest texts.

Random text messages since I have gotten my own cell phone have always come my way from my dad. Those randoms "I love you so much" and "I am so proud of you" never fail to make me smile, and I can always count on my dad for an adorable text message when I'm feeling down.

4. He taught me how to be brave.

When I needed to learn how to swim, he threw me in the pool. When I needed to learn how to ride a bike, he went alongside me and made sure I didn't fall too badly. When I needed to learn how to drive, he was there next to me, making sure I didn't crash.

5. He encourages me to best the best I can be.

My dad sees the best in me, no matter how much I fail. He's always there to support me and turn my failures into successes. He can sit on the phone with me for hours, talking future career stuff and listening to me lay out my future plans and goals. He wants the absolute best for me, and no is never an option, he is always willing to do whatever it takes to get me where I need to be.

6. He gets sentimental way too often, but it's cute.

Whether you're sitting down at the kitchen table, reminiscing about your childhood, or that one song comes on that your dad insists you will dance to together on your wedding day, your dad's emotions often come out in the cutest possible way, forever reminding you how loved you are.

7. He supports you, emotionally and financially.

Need to vent about a guy in your life that isn't treating you well? My dad is there. Need some extra cash to help fund spring break? He's there for that, too.

8. He shows me how I should be treated.

Yes, my dad treats me like a princess, and I don't expect every guy I meet to wait on me hand and foot, but I do expect respect, and that's exactly what my dad showed I deserve. From the way he loves, admires, and respects me, he shows me that there are guys out there who will one day come along and treat me like that. My dad always advises me to not put up with less than I deserve and assures me that the right guy will come along one day.

For these reasons and more, my dad will forever be my No. 1 man. I love you!

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Being Ugly

What it means to me


Due to a series of ongoing events throughout my semester, I've reconsidered what it means for someone to truly be ugly. Though it is often used in terms of appearance, I do not see it as such-- now more than ever. Ugliness runs deeper than appearance-- it runs within one's soul and festers into other areas of one's life, particularly in their treatment of others.

I view ugliness as someone's conscious capacity and implementation of malice. Taking time and energy out of your day to hurt someone else, that's what I view as ugly. Some offenses are more minor than others, however, it is still a conscious effort to hurt or affect someone else negatively-- and that's the source of the problem. I truly wonder what causes that sort of behavior in someone, as I, along with most people, simply do not invest time or energy into hating or plotting against others. It seems like a full-time job.

I can theorize all sorts of reasons as to why someone would act this way: hate, jealousy, vengeance, etc. Yet, all of these reasons don't hit the root reason. It almost seems that some people are just innately ugly in their soul. This alludes to the timeless debate of whether one's personality is due to nature or nurture. Again, although our surroundings and environment do have a large effect in our behavior, that alibi only goes so far when multiple people are placed in the same environment, in the same situation, and only some are willing to cross moral boundaries in order to hurt the others. Just because an environment applies pressure to people, does not mean everyone is going to act out in malice, and it certainly does not give everyone an excuse to do so. Some people are simply conniving and, well, ugly inside.

If you have ever encountered people like this, I know from personal experience that it is such a drag. You have an enemy, essentially, whether you chose to or not, however based on their hatred towards you, they are now considered an enemy, a hater, and any other associated term. Know that they will do anything in their power to bring you down, even if it requires bending the truth and creating elaborate schemes, but you have to keep on doing you. Let them obsess over ways to bring you down. At the end of the day, their time and energy is being invested into bringing you down, while yours is being used to build yourself up. They will fall by default. So, keep your head high, act in grace, and make your money. They can sip on their Haterade and watch from below.

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