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When I Grew a Backbone

Reading this title, you’re probably thinking this will be the story about how a girl gave and gave to those around her, she got screwed over and basically got sick of it. She grew a backbone and changed her life.

But no, this isn’t a cliché.

This is a story about the aftermath. This is the realization that you are an incredible, bad bitch who does not need anyone to tell her otherwise. This is the feeling of letting go of the old you – the pushover, blindly optimistic, big eyed and bushy tailed naïve girl.

Being 20 years old is petrifying. You’re not only trying to find yourself and figure out where your life is headed, but you’re simultaneously battling and dodging people who have no regard for anyone but themselves. You know in the back of your mind that you shouldn’t trust people too easily. But, you do because you’re kind and friendly and optimistic that everyone is good. And many people are good! But, sadly a lot aren’t. It’s kind of like the whole “hand on the stove” scenario. Your mom will tell you not to touch it, or you will get burned. What do you do? You touch it to see if you’ll get burned. And you do. Shocker.

But, the fact of the matter is that you give people the best of you. They take advantage. You get hurt. You get all emotional because you have feelings and they’re exposed. You meet someone who rocks and likes dogs, you fall into the cycle again and maybe, just when the stars align, things work out, but most likely they don’t. And you find yourself back at square one.

So, how do you bounce back from this?

You grow a backbone. Don’t get me wrong, you could be born with it or raised with it and even more power to you. But, if you’re like me, you had to go through the waves of distrust and aggravation before realizing you’re worth more than that.

The realization of knowing you don’t have to let other’s control how you feel is freeing. It’s a process. But, it takes time and it’s worth it.

You can look on your Twitter feed without getting pissed off. You can walk to class with your head up and nothing to be scared of. You can embrace being alone – like really being alone. You can go to sleep knowing that when you wake up, you’ll have a kickass day because you won’t let anyone kill your vibe.

You create your happiness. Grow a backbone. Don’t let people walk all over you because while you’re trying to make them happy, you’re crumbling. Chin up. Know your worth.

Hi ladies and gents, my name is Mel, Melanie if you're feelin' fancy. I'm a senior studying advertising, political science and fashion at West Virginia University. In addition to my studies, I am the Campus Correspondent for the WVU HC Chapter! You can hear me on the radio at U92 FM reporting the news and hosting morning shows. If I'm not there, I'm most likely at the local Panera eating my body weight in broccoli cheddar soup or writing about the daily, awkward encounters I experience. I represenative of the college of media as an ambassador and the prez of the magazine club. Oversized sweatshirts and jean on jean are my aesthetics. Lover, not a fighter unless you tell me Joe Jonas wasn't the best Jonas. Laters, baby.
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