When I was in high school, I was a goth girl.
I wore all of the black makeup and the wacky eyeliner and I even spiked my bangs down over my eyes. I had some trouble with the clothing because I went to a Catholic school, but I wore a pair of black boots that I was often getting into trouble over. I was supposed to wear black shoes that went no higher than my ankle, but these boots were dirty and the laces were broken halfway. They rose up three inches above my ankle and because of the broken laces, they sort of hung open. I looked really cool, but the principal felt differently, and I suffered through many in-school suspensions for them. I wore black spike bracelets and on the days when I could wear what I wanted, I wore my long black coats and my black clothes. Back then, I thought that I looked really cool.
All of my friends were the same. We were all the goths and the punks that didn't really fit in with other groups. In elementary school, we had all found it tough to make friends or play with others, and when we arrived into high school we all just found each other. We gravitated to each other almost instantly and we found a place in the huge school to call our own. We were literally called "the freak table". We sat far back in the cafeteria and we had the whole long table to ourselves. We used to carve things into the table and for some reason no one ever said anything. They all had to know that it was us, but no one ever said anything to us. Only a couple times did other groups try to tackle this long table, but it was never successful. It was our table and no one really wanted it that badly. No one really wanted us that badly.
One day, a friend of mine mentioned a conversation he had overheard in his math class. Some of the 'popular girls', the ones who played sports and wore makeup and hiked their skirts up as high as they would go, had been talking about me. Not noticing my friend, they were discussing my ability to be 'pretty'. They talked about all of the girls that sat at the 'freak table', but they seemed to have an interest in me specifically. They mentioned that if I would just wash my hair and wipe that makeup off of my face, I could actually be pretty, like them. They strongly believed that I could be worth something if I would just try a little harder to look more like they did. My friend thought that this was hilarious and he told me immediately after class. Everyone at our table laughed about it, and I joined in. I thought that it was stupid that they refused to refer to me as pretty because I refused to look like them. The best part of it was that they actually did think that I was pretty, but they had to find a way to make themselves contributors in the ways that I could be presented as better. I had never heard anything so ridiculous in my life, and I have always remembered it. Even to this day.
Am I still the same girl that I used to be? I like to believe that I have grown up and become wiser and more mature, but I also like to think that I haven't lost the spark that I carried throughout high school.
I like to think that I will always be one of the freaks.