1 - Lauren
Lauren knew three girls that had the same name as her - and that was just in her school of 300. She hated that - hated that ever since the first grade she’d al- ways been “Lauren M.” or “Tall Lauren” or, even worse, for a short period of time in 6th grade she’d become “Spinach stuck in her teeth Lauren.”
Her name wasn’t the only thing about her that screamed ‘unoriginal’ ; she wasn’t much to look at, ei- ther. Brown hair, brown eyes, pale skin that gave away the hours she spent locked inside playing sad songs and staring at the ceiling, dreaming of being transported to a place where loneliness didn’t exist and Prince Charmings came to her rescue. She wasn’t pretty, she wasn’t ugly, she wasn’t anything at all, really, and her classmates seemed to see that too. Or rather, not see it. She wasn’t ever bullied, and in a way that was an insult in itself; they so rarely noticed her that they couldn’t even be bothered to make fun of her.
She looked at those goddesses that roamed the halls, those 6-foot tall models with legs that stretched fur- ther than humanly possible as they strutted around, flipping their shiny, lustrous hair from left to right as they mesmerized the entire world with nothing more than a tilt of their blood-red lips. Something wasn’t right in the world to make them look like that and make her an invisible nobody.
It’s just not fair, she thought. For reasons beyond her control, she was doomed to a miserable existence filled with rejections and disappointment, while they had the entire world at the tip of their perfectly man- icured fingertips. It was just... so unfair. Internal monologues such as this one plagued her from day to day, leaving no space for any positivity to shine a light into the deep abyss her mind had become.
Nothing can save me now,she cried. If no one can notice me, wi they even hear if I cry out for help?
She remained silent, suppressing her feelings until she couldn’t feel anything anymore. Being numb, she thought, would be better than this... this thing that threatened to burn her alive.
But the flames have to be put out, not contained. If you fail to extinguish the budding fire, it will continue to grow, feeding on the unprotected parts of your soul. Beneath the defenses you put up, beneath the barriers you have raised, beneath the numbness you have elicited, you will not notice that the flame is well and alive. And eventually, when you least expect it, that tiny flame will have turned into a wildfire and come for what it has not already laid its claim upon.
After all, there is no mercy for the weak.
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