Fitting title isn’t it? Have you ever read the book, “The Outsiders” or seen the movie? No, this is not an in-depth analysis of it, just a reference. If you have read or seen it, good, you have just witnessed a great piece of literature that meant so much to me. Sometime back in middle school, I had to read it. It was one of the first books that crushed me with the death of a favorite character…
Now, the reason I say the title is fitting is because the protagonist, Ponyboy, always felt like he was caught between two very different worlds. He felt like he never truly fit anywhere, hence the title, “The Outsiders.” Now the worlds that Ponyboy was caught in, gangs and rich kids, is not something that I’m dealing with, in fact, it’s a bit of the opposite. I wish I was stuck between two worlds, but to tell you the truth, I’m trapped in a world alone.
To give context, I’ve never really fit in anywhere since elementary school. Middle school was a nightmare and even when I got to high school and thought, “okay I have a good group of friends, everything is going to be okay.” I was mistaken. Don’t get me wrong, I love my friends, but I never truly felt like I fit in with them. There were happy moments, of course, but then there were times when I went, “what am I doing here?” We never truly had the same mindset, and honestly, I’ve never had the same mindset of anyone I’ve ever met. Maybe that’s the beauty of being unique? I don’t know about that one, chief.
Fast forward to college and I’m stuck in the same exact position, except with less friends. (*insert depressing chuckle here*) No, really I am fine though, don’t worry about it. I’m not going to lie, it wasn’t the situation I expected myself to be in.
If you don’t already know, this past summer, I spent my time in Summer Bridge of the Millennium Scholars Program. And let me just say, that turned me into one giant stress ball for six ½ whole weeks. The amount of pressure and work put on you in so little time added the forced bonding of 40 individuals (called a cohort in the program) is enough to drive one just a little mad. But, I’m not complaining because I got through it. I would like to say that it made me stronger or it created this tight bond with 39 other people, but I won’t sit here and lie to you. The Millennium Scholars Program is a wonderful program and I can list many reasons why (friends, resources, support groups, advising help, close relationships with admins in your college, free tutoring, you name it) so if you are interested in Penn State, need financial aid, and are a minority in some way shape or form, I encourage you to apply. Having said that, I came out with battle scars.
To keep a long story short, something in summer bridge sort of broke me more than I was already and it was maybe suggested that I go to counseling. It’s not something I’m afraid to say because a lot of people need therapy, but they don’t go. Why? Sometimes people don’t want to face their fears or they’re too afraid to admit something because once they do, it becomes a reality. And once it becomes real, they have to deal with it and no one wants to deal with their problems because it hurts too much. But things don’t get better unless they get worse first.
For me, it took having two mental breakdowns for me to go, “okay, you need to get your life together. No one is going to fix this except you.” And thus came my YouTube channel and now, my blog.
I don’t fit in with my cohort and I don’t really have a strong connection with anybody in it, except maybe my roommate and one other person, but maybe that’s okay. I think that you know, at this point, I’m used to not fitting in. Maybe that’s bad or maybe that’s good (An intelligent person would say bad but, mind you, this is coming from me).
During my last breakdown, I did cry out for help (I called) and no one answered. I did this several times, and no one helped. So in a way, the absence of people I thought were going to be there for me actually helped me. Maybe it’s sick and twisted, but it made me stronger. That absence has changed since middle school, it just comes in the form of a different person.
And no, this isn’t a cry for help, I’m done with that. This is a battle cry. I’ve learned to stop relying on people that won’t be there for me because the only one that will be there for me is me.
So, get ready because as cliche as it sounds, “The old Courtney can’t come to the phone right now. Why? Because she’s dead”