Old is New Again

When I was in grade school, I was friends with a group of the shyest girls at school. My best friend was the soft-spoken daughter of two zoology professors, and when she got headgear, the bullies descended on her with a fury. Looking back, I’m amazed that my reaction as an 8-year-old was to attack the bullies relentlessly, insulting them at every opportunity, after a while preemptively before they even had a chance to taunt my friend. They predictably turned on me, and I became the new target, and even though I’d cry sometimes from what they said, I kept on baiting them and fighting them to keep them from hurting my friend. Later, in the muddle of adolescence, I lost the girl I was at 8. I wasn’t comfortable making enemies, even in the name of justice or protecting others. I was obsessed with pleasing everyone, making everyone like me – even if it meant outright lying and fabricating wild stories and hiding my true feelings. I feel like the last few months as a fledgling businesswoman that I’ve found that 8-year-old girl again. I break eggs to make delicious omelets, guided by an imperfect ethical compass and as much data as I can scrounge up. It’s scary. I mess up. I have no idea where I’m going, but I’m peddling as fast as I can. And I truly like this woman I’m trying to be.

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