I realize that I am failing miserably when it comes to blogging about my travels. I am still planning on doing it but I am currently in Ireland again and will be in Ibiza next week. I have a week and a half off to blog after that so a flurry of blogs will be here at that time. This is a blog I wrote almost two months ago the day after I got my tattoo done.
Cairdeas. It stands for friendship in Gaelic. It’s now a part of me forever, hanging out with a shamrock on my right hip. The reason that I got it was because I wanted to get a tattoo in Dublin with a shamrock. My best friend and I have matching tattoos on our hips now. Reflecting on this tattoo, its poetic how this is the tattoo that is now with me forever.
If you know me, you know that I’m a closed book a lot of the time. I am not the type of person to share information about myself freely. There are a lot of reasons why that is but some of it has to do with the fact that I grew up in my own personal hell. I’ve been conditioned over the year to put on the thickest of skins because of how hard my life was when I was a kid. It’s typical to hear people say that they had a rough childhood but mine truly was horrendous.
From the time I was five until tenth grade, I really had no friends. When I tell people that, they think I am exaggerating… I’m not. To this day, I still don’t know why nobody liked me when I was younger. I was very into sports, being one of the best players in our city’s soccer league and making it onto baseball teams during middle school. There is no story or “big incident” from my childhood that caused me to be bullied going through the grades like some people have. I ask myself if it’s because I am gay and the kids just knew I was different even though we didn’t know what gay was but I have no idea.
I was bullied. A lot. When I was in middle school, a guidance councilor told my mom that he has never seen someone go through what I have to go through every day and that he wouldn’t be able to walk in my shoes. I switched in and out of schools six times between fourth grade and tenth because it was too much to deal with. I went to therapy up until the eighth grade, being diagnosed with anxiety and depression in middle school. When my mom got me up for school in the morning, I would cry and beg not to go and she’s told me that it killed her that she had to make me. The school had an IEP (Individual Educational Plan, I think it stands for) for me, not because I was slow in any of my classes, but because I was bullied. I had to ride on the bus for special needs students to get me to and from school because I was bullied too much on the regular bus. There are stories that people are horrified to hear from my childhood but I think this paragraph has already made angels cry so I won’t delve into specifics. Growing up with nobody as my friend is the reason that I hold friendship so highly now. I have no shame in saying that I am truly one of the best people to have as a friend. Friendship to me is as strong as love for my family.
I’m lucky because I have so many amazing friends now. It’s sad that I cry about the fact I have friends sometimes but I’m okay with that. They’re so good that if you had my friends, you’d cry tears of joy too! I originally got cairdeas because it looked nice and I wanted a word to be with my shamrock. Now I reflect and realize that it wasn’t a fluke that it stands for friendship. I live every day for my friends and now I have it itched in my bones. When I look at it, I think of two things: my friend who has the matching tattoo and the fact that friendship is my mantra.
I’m sorry if this blog is a little off the beaten track. I was looking at my tattoo in the hostel and I started reflecting and decided it’d be good to write it down. I’ll have my blog about Ireland & London up soon. Cheers.