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I started this post over a week ago and then my stupid computer took a nosedive into virus hell.  And then I finished the post and tried to post it yesterday but apparently forgot to click the “publish” button.  Duh.  After I finally got it posted, I quickly began receiving emails and comments from so many who were encouraged by Miss Natalie Dopp’s story of becoming Homecoming Queen.  It IS an amazing story, and in my previous state of BLAH I didn’t really address the most fascinating part of the story.  The thing that REALLY struck me.  Made me stop and think.  And cry a little.

[If you don’t have a CLUE what I’m talking about, READ THE POST HERE.]

First of all, do you remember high school?  Do you remember the innate and insane sense of insecurity?  That mired down, sinking feeling of never being good enough?  Smart enough?  Thin enough?  Pretty enough?  Enough? 

Oh.  So I’M the only one?  Really?  Liar.

I can remember it.  I can recall feeling like I was tip-toeing across a sweltering desert of quicksand just waiting to sink and suffocate.  To be found out as a poser and a loser. 

When I watch Natalie’s story, I am completely in awe of her strong sense of self-confidence and self-assurance that many forty-somethings would envy.  She’s nothing at all like a girl I once knew who stomped into her guidance counselor’s office and asked nicely demanded that her name be removed from the ballot for homecoming court.  Not once, but two years in a row. 

Not because she was politically opposed to homecoming pageantry being demeaning to young women.  Not because she was offended by the popularity contest that the homecoming pageantry really is.  She did it because she hated her hair, her nose, her freckles, her fingernails, her eyebrows, her boobs, her butt, her feet. 

Because she was certain – absolutely positive – that her nomination was a cruel joke.

To watch Natalie’s unbridled enthusiasm and genuine joy at being part of the homecoming court, I am struck that she does not appear to have the same fear of not being accepted by her peers.  Despite – or perhaps because of – her special needs this young lady realizes that she IS, in fact, special.

I still see that mopey girl from high school occasionally.  I know, I know.  It’s usually my husband with the ridiculously pathetic friends, but somehow this woman has become part of my life.  When she comes around, she is a complete happiness vaccuum.  Just try to have a pleasant thought when she’s around, and she will hoover it away in an instant.  Honestly, I don’t care for her at all.  She’s so negative and miserable and unhappy.

And the next time she shows up in my mirror, I am going to chain her to a chair and make her watch the video of Natalie’s Homecoming Extravagana.  Over and over if necessary.  Until that bitch learns that we are ALL special.  Even me.

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