I was so shy I let bullies be bullies, until my neighbors stood up for me on what school kids called the “retard bus” because it had to traverse 20 miles through the countryside to pick up the farm kids. One might call me a hobby farm kid.
My aunt gave me her vintage 1957 Smith-Corona electric portable typewriter as a high school graduation gift, a gift that took her into teaching English to high school kids. I was the envy of the dorm. Of course this was pre-computer and laptops and everything else.
I was afraid to write, afraid to think or speak my mind, or sing. Writing 500 words was a challenge for me back then. Now I can do it in ten minutes if I know what my mind wants my fingers to type.
Sixth grade, I skipped tryouts after school for choir solos. The next day my teacher asked me to stay after school and look out the window. She played a note on the piano and asked me what it was. I told her. She made me sing a phrase from “Bridge Over Troubled Water” and made me lead off at the concert in front of family, friends and other parents.
I have had the gift of a great family and teachers and friends. Kids, do something that means something to you, it may be music or writing or computer code or math or being a doctor. Don’t bottle it up inside because people think women are inferior and don’t want to hear their thoughts. We are all important in this world. Dee