Since I deployed I’ve managed to meet some fabulous people and also grow closer to fabulous people I knew prior to the deployment. These close friendships have lead to long conversations about my issues, about my friend’s issues, but mostly my issues because, who are we kidding, I have a lot of issues. The general aftermath of these conversations has led to much introspection on my part, and to get all gross and cliché, I’ve learned a lot about myself over the course of this deployment.
Specifically, I’ve been thinking about the parts of my life I have always dubbed as “weird” and “embarrassing,” thus leading me to conceal them. Well, I’m slowly having a change in heart. Stay with me here, but maybe all the “weird” experiences I’ve had are actually what make me the Terra I have become, and maybe, just maybe, those stories are weird, but in a good way, like an “interesting” type of way.
Maybe this is all about me being 23 now and caring less about what other people think about me. In high school I wouldn’t dare tell anyone that I lived in West Virginia for a few years, or that my family was really poor growing up, because, hello?! That leads to insta-Stigma, and the 15, 16, and 17 year old me could not deal with insta-Stigma. That would have cramped my style.
But now, with some sort of new-found understanding of myself and a little more self-confidence than I was graced with in my teen years, and hell, even in the years of 20, 21, and 22, I think I’m ready to share the stories I always thought were too out-there to share. I mean, how many people have been attacked by a chicken? Or, better yet, how many people have been attacked by a chicken and then, later that week, gotten to eat said chicken for dinner? I think I’m finally comfortable enough in my own skin to realize that there’s nothing embarrassing about being attacked by a chicken, it’s just ridiculous, but that doesn’t mean that I should keep it to myself.
Lastly, if you’ve ever been attacked by a chicken (or a turkey, or a goose), I would love to hear about it and maybe, depending on my level of insanity, we could bond over our war stories against poultry. Or, you know, maybe not.