“Raise your hand if you have ever been personally been victimized by Regina George.”
Everyone who has ever seen the movie Mean Girls remembers the scene where Regina George wears sweatpants on the wrong day and Gretchen Wieners breaks down and shouts “You can’t sit with us!!” Have you ever experienced that? I can tell you right now I have, and it ain’t fun.
I didn’t have the right last name in the town where I attended high school. I didn’t live there my whole life, didn’t hang out with the right crowd, etc. I just didn’t fit in and it continued to be this way from seventh grade until I graduated. I will never ever forget the time that I sat at the lunch table my junior year of high school before a home football game.
It was me and six other girls sitting at the table. They were all talking about where to eat before the game. Regina George pointed at each individual and asked, “Are you going to the HotDog place?” “Are you going to the HotDog place?” She asked every other girl at the table except for me. I was in the middle of that circle pattern she made with her finger and skipped right over me. As her finger drug across my chest it felt like I was hit with a bullet. Had she really just passed me while in front of other people? Did she just exclude me? Am I not invited? That happened seven years ago and I still have questions about that day at the table.
Now, I wasn’t the sad girl wearing glasses drooping down her face that got her books thrown from her hands in the hallway. My classmates didn’t go out of their way to humiliate me. I had many different friend groups and learned how they were all different but all similar. There was a time that I do remember when I was so discouraged by my classmates and I almost ate my lunch in the bathroom or the teacher’s lounge. I always try to include people. I know how it feels to be left out so I try and invite or eat or hang out with those people who are sometimes looked over. Inclusion is something drilled into my head. I want to make sure everyone feels good and appreciated. No one should ever be publicly skipped over for invites at the lunch table. My mother told me if I ever wanted to invite certain people and not others, to do it in privacy.
Excuse my french but high school was hell for me. I was excluded every now and then. I didn’t fit in where I went to high school and I remembered a light on the horizon…college.
College. College. That’s what supposed to be my blooming period. Everyone was “grown-up” and “grown-out” of the drama. The kids who had the awful time in high-school flourished here. It was our time to shine.
Once I go to college I joined a sorority the spring of my freshman year. I had 60 new gal pals and I was so excited to get manicures, talk about boys, have game nights and do all those funs things I was never invited to in high school. I learned a year or two in that Mean Girls don’t go away, they just keep getting older. They’re going to be just like Regina’s mom. They’re gonna get fake boobs and become obsessed with staying young since those years were the best years of their life.
I think that I’m growing differently than these girls. Maybe my “glory days” have passed. Am I on the back-nine of my fun stories that I tell my children about college? Everyday I get older. Everyday I’m ready to be in my field working with adults who are all after a goal. I love my job and I love that I’m working with adults and not girls at a community service event. And besides, Becky only signed up for that shift for the kick-ball tournament because Lisa and Carrie did and they can have brunch at the Pizza joint with Chad and the other guys after they’re done. Becky only wants to see Chad to ask if Matt went home with Suzie because Matt hasn’t talked to her in four days. *eye-roll*
I’m at a turning point. I’m becoming an adult. I would rather work now and play later. It’s been a hard time getting here. The darties (day parties) I’ve missed out on, the nights with my friends, the lunches at the student center…it’s all going away. Darties turn into evening shifts at work, nights with friends turn into drive-thru taco bell after that shift, and lunches at the student center turn into a slim-jim and a candy bar for lunch while sitting at my desk at work drafting social media posts.
My mom always told me that the Mean Girls never win. I always heard that but recently I’ve been able to actually see that. Those girls aren’t going anywhere but where they are now. They can talk about me all they want at the lunch tables and the parties. I have a killer internship and the experiences I’m gaining are so much better than the gossip they’re gaining. I would rather sit in an interview with Fox News and the new Chief of Police (I actually did this with my internship and it was awesome) than sit in the bar while Becky avoids Matt because he won’t return her texts. I’m off to bigger and better horizons. The mean girls never win. The mathlete who was new to school and who had a small group of real friends, she’s the one who wins in the end.