No one wants to be friends with a b*tch.” – My 8th Grade Spanish Instructor

I still laugh when I say that aloud, because at the time I thought it was the harshest thing to say to a 13 year old girl, but it served its purpose in time.

I was such a sourpuss. I assumed that I didn’t need new friends and though the ones that I was “b*tchie” to proved me right, my cold heart could have held me back from experience. I was in the eighth grade and new to my middle school, so I intended to stay clear of all signs of trouble.

All of the drama that existed was among the girls and I didn’t really want to be a part of it. That was my attitude. The problem was that it showed.

To these girls, my attempts to be drama-free appeared as me “thinking I was better” than them; thus the conversation between Senorita Melendez and I.

Adult Michelle gets it now.

There’s nothing you can do or say that will mask or tune up your character. It shows.

It wasn’t until yesterday that I fully understood this concept.

As I scrolled through my Facebook timeline, I came across a video that my mentor shared of one of Pastor Sheryl Brady’s messages. I can always appreciate a good sermon with a life lesson and this was definitely one of them.

She spoke about image consultants and how they are literally a click away thanks to the internet. However, we can’t seem to find “character consultants”. We focus on our outward appearance and who our Instagram and Twitter accounts make us. The strategies that we follow to be the perfect cup of tea are amazing.

This message hit hard because I realized that I’d been idolizing people.

Bloggers, actresses, musicians, and common folk who have teams that work to create the image that I see.

Pastor Brady mentioned that we buy into things and people, but don’t see them for what they really are. Image is what we project them to be, but character is who they really are.

It broke me down something serious, but it made me remember why it’s important to be your whole self in all that you do. It’s important to do everything with a pure heart and good intentions.

I used to laugh when people said that things like “Love gives you a glow” until I saw it for myself. When you are truly in love with something or someone… when you are dedicated to a project or a cause, your passion and commitment will show.

As I’ve grown from a girl to a woman, I have gone from one extreme to the next trying to create the perfect me. In my pictures, trying to get involved in things that would make me “look” better on paper, etc.

It wasn’t for me and it showed.

When I accepted myself for who she is – and all of her craziness – I began to do things with love and compassion.

There were things that I was told not to do or say because they weren’t socially acceptable, but they got me exactly where I needed to be.

Where was that? Among like-minded and goal-oriented people who are not plagued by group think.

I’ve become a happier me since I realized that a sound mind and spirit would get me further in life than an illusion of a flawless life. I am forever reminded that selfies are but a glimpse of who you are, but what that soul do – boo?

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