I’m in the third Grade, I’m being bullied. My classwork books are stolen because I always get correct answers. They hate me for it. Oh, I forgot something else, my lunch money is also stolen from me. Almost every month I restart my classwork in a new book for all my different subjects. Just as I finish rewriting my book, my old book mysteriously returns to my desk, the cover torn, ruined. I say nothing, I continue using the old book.

Fast forward to two years. I’ll be in the seventh grade, I’m turning 12, and boys are starting to tell me they like me. I run away from them and avoid them like crazy. My books still get stolen, but I’ve become smarter in ways of hiding my pocket money. It doesn’t get stolen anymore. I’ve developed a crush on a guy at school, he had confessed that he loved me. I haven’t told him that I like him too because I’m too shy.

So much went on in my head and at school that I didn’t still pay attention to guys. I focused on my schoolwork and my mother who was ill. She passed away in the middle of the year, while I was still in seventh grade. Her death shattered my world. I tried being strong and not crying my heart out but it was tough. I couldn’t talk to anyone about how my mother’s death affected me because I had to act like a grownup. And worse of all, the guy I had developed a crush for started dating another girl at school, which hurt me very much.

That was my first heartbreak. I told myself it was my fault because I took my own time to tell him I felt the same way about him that he did about me. I didn’t go out after that, I refused to be seen in public after school because it would’ve been excruciating for me to see the two of them together. I stayed at home and entertained myself by watching TV and reading. I told myself that it was better that way, at least if I stayed at home, I wouldn’t get hurt. It was like that for the rest of my primary school career.

I became more responsible in Grade 8. I didn’t lose my things anymore. All my books stayed in my backpack and I continued so through Grade 11 and 12. I couldn’t wait to finish school, for me it was torture, but once my matric was done, I passed with flying colours. I didn’t apply to go study further nor did I apply for a bursary, I wanted to avoid being around people. I liked being on my own.

I intended on staying at home, taking a gap year, but my sister had applied for a learner-ship on my behalf without telling me. I received that learner-ship and decided to be the best student that I could be. I still lacked a lot of self-confidence and self-esteem but I was determined to complete my qualification and so I did.

Then soon after I completed my learner-ship and received my qualification, I was offered a job as a tutor. This was my first job ever and although I was afraid of being a working young adult, I told myself that I was already 19-years-old and I had to learn how to deal with all sort of people. I read motivational books and articles in magazines, which helped me build up my self-esteem. It didn’t all happen overnight but I was happy that I was gaining confidence in myself.

The entire learner-ship experience boosted my moral, I learned a lot about my self-worth and that I am indeed a good person. That all happened as I was about to turn 20-years-old. My family threw me a surprise birthday party to show me how much I really meant to them, which made me feel special. After my 20th birthday it wasn’t long before I fell for a guy again. I fell head over heels with him, my first kiss was with him. It was one of the best yet, scariest moments of my life. I am boosted. I learn about self-worth. I turn 20. I have my first boyfriend. My first kiss. One of the best and scariest moments of my life. I’m in love.

It didn’t take long for him to lose interest in me though. After he got what he wanted from me, he became more distant and eventually dumped me. I didn’t tell anyone about him or him leaving me. But people around me knew, they had seen us together many times. No one asked me about it, which was perfectly fine with me. I was only focused on moving on from my second heartbreak and to see what the future had instore for me.

As a way of forcing myself to move on I started going out and being more social with people my age and older. I made friends who I could hang out with. They became my confidants. I still don’t have a boyfriend at the moment but there is a guy who asks me out continuously but I refuse. I’m not ready to date again, not yet. I like him and give him needed attention but I have learned to love and put myself first.


Tell us what you think: Do you remember your first relationship? How was it?