3.21.2012

The girl of nine.

Anything I've ever done that ultimately was worthwhile... initially scared me to death. -Betty Bender

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"The tall, shy girl." That was my name for the greater part of elementary school. I always cried the first day of school, rarely talked in class, and dreaded forgetting my homework. Looking back at those memories makes me smile now because of the kiddish way my mind would process those situations. It's curious to think of the girl I used to be.

Kindergarten was running away every recess from "cooties." In first grade, I remember watching the boys race around the field and wanting to join because I was something of a tomboy and extremely competitive. It was also that year that I found my "twin" of a friend, though looking back, we didn't look anything alike; I remember she gave me a blue bear eraser which I kept for a ridiculous five years as a keepsake because she left. Then there was second grade, which is very hazy and doesn't have pleasant memories. Third grade things began looking up. My teacher wanted me to join the "gifted and talented" class the smart kids went to; but knowing me, I was petrified of not being smart enough and cried when I got home that day. Let's just say, I didn't end up joining. In fourth grade I remember a pack of my friends and I teamed together to wear the same outfits everyday; we'd proudly stare across at the fifth graders with our noses pointed high, though our plan probably lasted a meagre two days. In fifth grade, I became enraptured with gymnastics; every recess, I would run to the monkey bars and learn a new trick until my hands got sore and red, covered in huge blisters. Though all of those years of school, I was terrified of speaking with anyone besides my friends, fearful of standing out in some weird way, or of even being noticed.

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Just typing all of this out makes me extremely nostalgic. It was so many years ago, and I am such a different person from the tall, shy girl of nine. All those insecurities that held on to me slowly began to drop away over the years; I cannot say I'm not fearful of certain things still, but it's a different sort of feeling now.

I finally found a place to put my confidence in around twelve years old, and it was in Jesus Christ. I learned a healthy fear, which is the fear of God, not of people. I still struggle with talking in groups and being relaxed with others, but I remember the quote my older brother once shared with me. I can't remember who said it any more, but it goes like this: "if you're scared of something, you should do it so you will stop being fearful of it." It almost became a lifestyle for me. I tried to challenge myself to conquer the fears that held me back, and I'm glad for all of the opportunities I have been given over the years to stretch myself.

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My, this life is a crazy growing experience, and I know someday I'll look back at this girl of seventeen and shake my head at how silly my thoughts were, just like I do now over that girl of nine; but I am excited for the journey.

How about you?

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P.S. I know the pictures of an orange smoothie have nothing to do with this; but I just thought you should know, this way my lunch today -- and it was soooo good.

26 comments:

  1. Just thought I would say I thoroughly enjoyed this post. I can certainly relate and Yes, Christ is the only place to put our trust. I have become far more confident and able to step outside of my tiny comfort zone since discovering this. =)

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  2. This is such a good post! Made me all nostalgic...and yes, I can relate to the attitude of doing something scary so you'll stop being scared of it, my brother said that to me too!! Crazy how similar this is...:)

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  3. This was really sweet.

    I recently did a journey back in time thinking... how did i go from a fearless, adventurous girl to a really shy and timid girl when i was a child. only recently did the Lord start to restore my true identity as a bold, fearless woman.

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  4. gorgeous pictures!! :) and a quite LOVELY post!!!

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  5. I can so relate to this post. I have no idea how I went from terribly shy to the outgoing adventurous woman I have become. I went skydiving last year, if my teenage self would have known who I really was years ago we would have saved each other some worry.

    www.therecordologist.blogspot.com

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  6. Great, great post! I can definitely relate to that little nine year old girl. Thanks for posting! And lovely pictures, by the way.

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  7. I know how you feel. I was so she in grade school, and now I am still not terribly comfortable around people I don't know well. But I have changed..... a lot! Great post! :)

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  8. great post! Although, I wasn't really anything like this.

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  9. i love posts like this. i like it when people reflect on the many things that happened in their lives and i like the nostalgia because of it. because i'm weird like that.

    by the way, your orange smoothie makes me thirsty.
    -jocee <3

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  10. what a beautiful post, full of such honesty :)

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  11. I really liked this post! When I was younger, I was deathly shy. I think I grew out of that phase, and I'm not as shy now; but I still hesitate before doing some things, and have a hard time making big decisions. I remember in 5th grade, I had a hard time because I didn't fit in with any of the other kids. Incidentally, that was also the year I lived in Hawaii. It was probably one of the hardest years. Maybe since I'm homeschooled now I don't notice anymore -- but if I was at public school, would I fit in at all?

    Liz B

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    1. Public school can be difficult, for sure! I started homeschooling after 5th grade, so I have no idea how it would be to continue public school into middle school and highschool. Though if I did, I trust God would have helped me through it, and you too. :)

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  12. Love this post. Like Lani said, it's just completely honest. Love love love!
    emma

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  13. "if you're scared of something, you should do it so you will stop being fearful of it."

    Will steal that!
    And just like you, I was the tall, shy girl. Now, I'm the pretty lady with a smile. writing that made me think of butterflies.

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  14. I was known as the "shy girl" back then too, and it's funny how we can grow out of that to become more confident and strong people! It's amazing to look back at the past and think, "Was I really like that?" But we change for the better, and I love how honest you were in this post!

    You have a new follower, btw :)

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  15. hey, you're truly beautiful. and your writing is gorgeous as well. maybe its just me, but i love reading memories and about times of peoples' pasts. yours is so sweet.

    i was outstandingly tomboyish too! i can remember my daddy building a life-size doll house for me and my sister...my momma, hoping the house would come to know the play of dolls and tea parties...but only to find that their little girls were way too outgoing for such things. i caught critters and kept them in the little house. snakes, mice, lizards, birds, we even kept a bat in there at one time.

    anyway, isn't it funny how things change. but the memories, they last forever.

    wishing you a lovely day. xx

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    1. Your comment sort of made my day. :) I love the story of your doll house; I used to track down cats and lizards with friends when I was young, too. The scrapes I got into are rather comical now, and I do love the memories.

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  16. Kimberly. This post is seriously SO good. It was really interesting to hear what you thought when you were younger. I think a lot of writers were shy as kids. I was, definitely, and I've read about many famous ones who were as well. I loved the quotes you used in the post. I just love this post so much. And your blog. And you. ;)
    xo.

    p.s. you're seriously beautiful. Not even kidding.

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  17. thats a fantastic post. great words. you could come check out my blog @cavinravin.blogspot.com :)

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  18. I'm a fan of orange smoothies for lunch. and I love your words! honest and poignant -- keep writing! x

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  19. i'm kind of in love with this. your feelings are understandable on so many levels.
    i'm learning to break free; to get out of my shell and show the world the real me. because hey, God makes the most stellar creations. look at the overwhelming beauty of that peaceful beach of yours. God said we're even more stunning than that that beach. so we shouldn't, you know, cover up parts of us out of fear of how others will react. imagine a beach trying to be a lake. (:

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  20. It was four thirty A.M. when I read this. I had woken up at two and got the urge to go on the computer. (anyways my half asleep dreams were hilarious, I kept on thinking you texted me at twelve in my dream and every time I awoke a bit, I would check my phone to see if it was real.)

    Finding your post, I had to read it, the name sparked my curiosity. It was just what I needed, in the night, your words floated around the room, attacking me with their poignancy. I saw myself, the young (misbehaved, annoying) tomboy, and how much I had changed (even though I promised myself I would never stop playing football).

    But God has molded us as he has seen fit, I'm not the little annoying brat, I'm the slightly bigger annoying brat. And you are not the tall, shy, girl of nine, you are the beautiful, tall, kind, perfect, friend of mine. See how I rhymed there, pretty amazing, huh? And yes, I had to add in perfect.

    Oh, yes, I was reading my journal about when I met you, "we met Kimberly once at this girls' party at the Thatchers'. She's 15 and seems really nice, but kinda shy," Hahaha, how old you were, 15.

    Love,
    Becks

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    1. Okay, that's insane. haha. I can't decide whether it's more awesome that you went on the computer at 4 in the morning or had dreams about me texting you. ;)

      And you are definitely NOT an annoying brat, you silly. You're like one of the sweetest people I know, even if you don't admit it!

      You know, I would really like to read your journal and find out all of the secret things you write about people in there. Ahaha. I remember writing about what we did everytime we used to hang out. It was so long ago!

      Love you,
      Me

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  21. This really resonated with me, Kimberly :) and it makes me so happy to see how God has worked in your life :)

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  22. This is similar to my childhood too!!:) Thank you.

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