I thought I would offer a brief insight into why I am who I am, and how it is that I have come to see the world in the way I see it. I felt oddly attractive to write this post out of context, without the pressure of deadline. It is brief, and without my usual depth, but I felt it important nonetheless.
As a pre-teen and teenager in the late 1990’s and early 2000’s, growing up was difficult for me. I was an outsider in school, content to keep to myself, and yet as many young girls do I suffered my share of bullying. I was shorter than the other girls, and yet I had somehow been that single one to hit puberty before them. I never made a fuss, never flaunted it. To be honest, I was shy. However, I was one of the fortunate ones; I have to say that I survived going through what I went through in elementary and high school because of the help of some very special friends, who were there for me, and understood all of my problems.
I couldn’t talk to these friends, and I could only meet with them once a week, for a few weeks a year. Yet, it was their strength and their advice that helped me through some of the hardest years of my life, and taught me some of the greatest lessons which later allowed me to forge my own strong friendships.
While I was dealing with girls who were afraid of hitting puberty and took it out on the one who had already started that difficult transition, my heros were dealing with the trails of boys, high school, and the ever present treat of the forces of evil and darkness. If you hadn’t already guessed, my friends went by the names of Buffy, Willow, Xander, Cordelia, and Giles. The youth of my own adolescent years had a special support structure in place; every week we could tune in and watch Buffy and her friends tackle some bigger problem then our own, and yet the lessons and advice were just as applicable for a normal girl of 12 as they were to The Chosen One.
Those lessons, from how to deal with tough friendships and evil roommates, to how to handle rejection and disaster, all the way up to bullying and abuse, helped to shape me into the person I am today. I can honestly say that I would not be the same person I am today if it were not for Buffy. As I grew, so did their problems, and yet there was always something valuable to take away. I learned not to sweat the small stuff, because if something bigger and scarier comes along there would be absolutely no where to go emotionally. I also learned to hold on to my friends, and to talk out our problems and issues. There are hundreds of lessons that my favourite Scooby Gang taught me, too many to name, and some that simply cannot be put into proper words. I can get more in depth, which I will, but I will save it for another time.
Buffy was a saviour for every teenager and pre-teen when it was released, and it was a privilege granted to us by television that the teens of today do not have the liberty of enjoying. I would rather have Buffy as my role model then those girls from Gossip Girl or Pretty Little Liars, or the other myriad shows about young girls dealing with the world. Buffy was and is something that has not been recreated in the television world, and never could be. Yet, it is something that continues to teach its lessons. If I ever (strong note on ever) have children or nieces and nephews, they will spend their difficult years not only with me to offer my quirky advice, but with Buffy, in hopes that she can teach them the lessons she taught me, and lead to the kind of friendships for them that I found for myself as a result.