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Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

BURGESS: Growing amongst adversity

This story is a part of a series called “Opinions from the Heart” where columnists write personal narratives.
Photo from Public Domain Pictures.

Of the 8 billion people in this world, there is a young college woman. She is tall, black, has locs and is an introvert. Throughout her life, she has experienced loss, many times, in fact. But, it wasn’t just a death in the family or distancing from a friend. It was the loss of herself. That girl is me.

I enjoy her company while listening to music and painting. I love playing video games, watching anime and arguing with people, especially when it comes to politics.

You see, over the years so many things happened as a child, and as I got older, drama in the family was a reoccurring thing that led to a bit of trauma. Sometime around the end of elementary school, I knew that I hated myself.

I thought I ruined everything I touched or when I would say something, I thought added to the drama. I despised the way I looked; I thought I was disgusting.

So, in junior high, I started wearing baggy clothes, nothing flashy, barely fashionable.

When I was a little gremlin, I was always happy, I loved getting my picture taken, wearing dresses and had so much energy.

Now that I think about it, me now and me then are not much different other than a splash of trauma. Other than that I was just another kid in the world.

I was running around outside running around, drawing, riding my bike, talking to ants, you know the usual kid stuff.

Then one day someone I loved and held in the utmost regard insulted me. Usually, I’m not the type of person to be offended or take what someone says to heart, but back then it hit me so hard.

“Look at that stomach, you’re fat,” they said. I was still a child when they said that to me.

It’s funny, looking back now, how far I have come from then. I think nothing of that statement now.

I like being alone, but back then I distanced myself from people. If I did become friends with someone, we somehow grew apart, I gave up on the friendship.

Emotions weren’t really my thing. I’ve never really been an emotional person but, then? I put on facades and combined them with my hate for myself.

It was only near the end of high school that I started finding myself and started truly loving myself. That energetic, blunt, smiley self. How did I achieve this you might ask? Three things: God, my mom and my ex.

Back at home, the church we went to had an annual retreat for high schoolers. At a church retreat, everyone is singing, and I had this moment. It’s hard to describe but as this song is going on I’m just bawling my eyes out.

I can’t remember the lyrics or the song, but I do remember the message: I am accepted by not only God but those that I love.

It was then and there, I knew that I may have flaws, but if God accepts me, everything will be fine. It’s not only that, but God also opened my eyes to what everyone else was telling me my entire life: I am loved, I am beautiful and I am accepted.

This brings me to my mom.

It was weird, but I could hear all the things my mom had said to me about myself. I’m not ugly, I’m beautiful and I have a great smile. There’s a difference between listening and hearing, and I wasn’t doing that. I heard what my mom was saying, but I never truly listened until that moment at the church retreat.

Finally, my ex. Yes, he’s my ex, but when we were together, thanks to him, my confidence in myself grew more and more. I didn’t realize until he told me, but he said that at some point I had stopped putting myself down. And I thought “Huh, dang you right.”

It took a while, but my loss became a new love for myself. And at the end of the day, freak the haters.

This story was written by Trinity Burgess. She can be reached at [email protected].

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Trinity Burgess
Trinity Burgess, Live Broadcast Director
Trinity is the Live Broadcast Director at the Wire. She is a sophomore from Hoffman Estates, IL studying journalism and political science. In her free time, Trinity enjoys painting and she has a twin brother. This year Trinity is looking forward to the people and the events at the Wire.

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