And hello.

 Pretty sure I was the only seven-year-old willingly rocking suspenders like the proud Urkel wannabe that I was. I knew then that I was weirder than most kids - hence the confident expression on my face.

Pretty sure I was the only seven-year-old willingly rocking suspenders like the proud Urkel wannabe that I was. I knew then that I was weirder than most kids - hence the confident expression on my face.

I've been weird for as long as I can remember, man. And for as long as I can remember, I never gave a fuuuuuuck. 

You kiddin' me?! By the time I was 5, everyone in my neighborhood was making fun of me for being "crazy." That's just a really shitty way of people saying I was awesomely unique. That above picture of me, alone, provides that example.

I was 8 when I first learned what the word "insecure" meant. I was getting pretty fed up from the asshole kids in my class making fun of me just for being myself, so I struck friendships with my teachers. Obviously, most of these kids weren't on my maturity level.

Fortunately, I did the right thing (like Mookie) and built significant relationships with these older peers who also happened to be authority figures. One of them was Mrs. Mooney, my third grade P.E. teacher. I told her some of the things that the mean girls at school were saying to me — like how I was ugly (this is a pattern, for sure), that boys wouldn't like me because I was a tomboy with a deep voice, and other petty shit — and asked why they would say those things to someone who doesn't even bother them.

"Do you know what 'insecure' means?" Mrs. Mooney asked.

"No," I said.

"It means when people feel bad about themselves. So she's saying those mean things to you for no reason because she feels bad about herself."

"Oh." (LIGHTBULB!)

Life-changing moment, my friends. Ever since then, I charged every insult and bully attempts to the insecurity game and kept it moving. 

As one of the greatest humans ever created once said:

Yes, Mariah Carey has lot to do with everything, but I will end it here. Foreshadowing and whatnot. Toodles!

Amber North