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Looking back: Do people change?

Updated on September 21, 2013

I've started having a digital clear out. In other words, sorting through all my files on my laptop and back up disks and getting rid of...well...garbage. And boy, have I found some rubbish; I've already got 1,146 files in my Recycling Bin!

But as much rubbish and duplicates of files as I've found, I have also found a heck of a lot of old memories. It's quite painful sometimes to look at old photographs and videos from when I had loads of friends back home, because as great as those times may have been, it also reminds me of how some of those friends hurt me later on in life. It made me wonder:

Do people change? And if so, can they change for the better?

And I'm sure a lot of people wonder the same thing. Maybe some of you guys have been hurt or betrayed by someone you loved and trusted. Sometimes that trust has been broken beyond repair, and there really is no going back from that. But sometimes - and maybe you do too - I wonder to myself: what if? What if I did give them a second chance? Would we be able to work something out?

I decided the best way to figure out an answer to the question was to reflect on somebody I know better than anyone else: myself.

The Example: me

To do this, I have been looking through pictures and video footage of me from when I was younger to who I am now, and I've come to the conclusion that I was...erm...well I've improved with age. And I'm not talking about looks - this photo of the year 7 hockey team will prove that I have changed much physically at all:

Can you guess which one is me?
Can you guess which one is me?

See? Still got the gap the size of a Mars bar between the teeth.

Me: then and now.
Me: then and now.

The difference between Lil Claire here......................and Pain-In-The-Butt Claire here is the level of awesomeness they have. Lil Year 7 Claire was...bland. She was a major swot, wouldn't dare say "boo" to a goose, and her fashion was that of a typical person her age. She tried to follow the crowd and so freakin' awkward it was painful. The poor girl didn't understand there was such thing as a food chain in high school and that she was at the very bottom of it. Hell, one of the first days of high school she got called a slut and had to ask one of the popular girls what one was:

"Oh my God, you don't know what a slut is?"

"What is it?"

"It's a tart."

"Oh. Erm...what's a tart?"

Yeah, that popular girl was quite bewildered by how sheltered I was. Did she really think I'd be asking her what a slut was if I knew what it was? Moron...

And then I came across a video from Summer School. Now if there was one thing I wish I could change about myself, it is my inability to talk very well. Everyone goes on how they wish they could change their nose or their legs or some other physical thing about them, but I've always known I was perfect, and that's not ego talking, that's fact. It's just talking I'm useless at. I stammer and trip over my words and...well...I sound like a dufus. It's annoying because I can hear myself and it's just like, "God, Claire, why can't you just say what you're trying to say already?!" and it can be really frustrating, especially when you have to do oral presentations in front of people. Then I watched the video (which, alas, I cannot upload on HubPages so you will have to view here). Holy maggots I was a heck of a lot worse at talking back then than I am now. At least you can actually hear me these days (although maybe that's not such a good thing).

Pain-In-The-Butt Claire started to bloom near the end of Year 9 as she chilled out a little and properly settled down with a group of friends. She started an interest in funky socks, and then before you knew it: BOOM! She evolved into the weirdo everybody knows and loves now! Yayyy!

Congratulations! Your little innocent Claire has evolved! Eh!
Congratulations! Your little innocent Claire has evolved! Eh!

In conclusion?

So what have I concluded from my stupidly embarrassing videos and photos? I guess it's that...things do change. People change, and not necessarily in appearance. Take my example for instance: I used to be a super-skinny, quiet little kid who denied who she really was so that she could try and fit in with the crowd, but despite us looking the same, I'm completely different to her. Though I do sometimes wish I was still as nerdy and motivated as she was!

Of course, in my example I was a child growing up, and it's inevitable for children to change as they get older, but that doesn't mean they stop learning and changing once they are all grown up. People do change, so it's sometimes a good idea to try to bury the hatchet with those who have hurt us. Who's to say that they are the same people they used to be? Who's to say they will hurt us again? Maybe they've learned their lesson, or gotten the help that they needed. Yeah, some people don't change their ways and will hurt us again given the chance. If they blow it, fine. But what if they don't?

I'm going to take my own advice and clear the air with someone who used to be one of my best friends, someone who I have really missed. It has been about a year since we last spoke. If there's someone you have fallen out with or just haven't spoken to in a while, sort it out.


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    • profile image

      Ausseye 4 years ago

      Hey SeeMiller,

      What an awesome self you make, a great story with a solid self briefing the world, about the chi of life, which is all about throwing good things into the river of life…and boy have you succeeded with your advice. Love the frank discussion with yourself and the story of a life well lived. Your beauty shines and its not appearance I am talking about. Shine on girl and make the next twenty years as exciting to read about. Hopes it’s a novel next time…a best seller. Love the open way you looked at yourself. Vote this up and out of the ordinary!!

    • Mark Johann profile image

      Mark Johann 4 years ago from Italy

      There is nothing permanent in this life except change. People change and so do you. No matter what, friendship remains and accepts any changes, may it be bad or good. For who are we to condemn bad ones, but God.