Pain That Comes From Caring

Hi Everyone,

So I suppose people are wondering what the title means. Well I go to the high school where we have a school magazine. I am on the publication staff and I wrote an editorial for the school magazine. My editorial was on why you shouldn't use the word retard. This subject is very near and dear to my heart because I have an older sister who has a learning disability, a neice who has Cerebal Palsy and one of my older sisters used to be a teacher in the Special Education class at my elementary school when I was little. Not only for those reasons, but because I have been considered different, weird, un-worthy and even made fun of my life because of my heart and lung disease; I know what it feels like for this people. People who are loving, caring, understanding and most importantly; human.

Well the school magazine got out and I didn't hear a lot about it. Not even from my teachers, most likely because I put in a paragraph about how dissapointed I am in them for not stepping up and stopping the use of the word when kids say it. And I mentioned how THEY say it too and how hurtful it is to hear people who are supposed to be my role-models using a word that hurts others. The two teachers I had in mind when I wrote the article, obviously did not get the message because they still use it. But anyways. . .

It was the night of the first show I believe, in the school play. I was backstage talknig with a few actors when a boy in the show brought up the editorial. When I tried to explain to him how I felt about it, it fell on deaf ears. He and about 4 other boys started to just taunt me about it. They would purposely use the word around me and when I tried to ask them not to they would reply with 'Becca just drop it.' And yet they wouldn't stop; so how did they expect me to just drop it?

While I understand that immaturity is all a part of high school, these are Seniors and Juniors. . . don't you think by this time they would be more mature? I wanted to go to Mrs. Colson (the drama director) and tell her what had happened. . . except her son was one of the taunters. And on top of that, she was one of the teachers who used the word retard, so she probably got offended by the editorial anyways.

I suppose some people may say that I asked for it. That I wrote that editorial knowing that there would be hell to pay. But that doesn't mean that I can't try to change the world. Martin Luther King knew that he could be thrown in jail, that people would attack him. But did that stop him? No. And it won't stop me either. The bad and good part about having a chronic illness is that you are more mature than people your age. But the best part is, you know what its like to be different. You care about others. You want everyone to be treated equally. You want everyone to be accepted and loved for who they are; because that wasn't always the case with you.

I want to change the way this society thinks. I want people to be more understanding, more caring, loving, accepting and kind. I can't wait to get out into the real world, where (hopefully) the highschool immaturity and the 'I-know-everything' mentallity is gone. I won't stop talking or stop advocating for those who can't do that for themselves. I won't stop loving and accepting others.

With Love and Hope,
Becca

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My Life As A Chronically
Ill Young Adult
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