What Is Flirting, Anyway?

I saw a Buzzfeed article about the hashtag #GrowingUpUgly and related to more than one of the points. Why? Because from 2006-2010, I was ugly. 

In the beginning of my middle school years, my hair was midway down my back, my overbite was barely covered by my lips, and my eyebrows were not only thick, but a different color than my hair (my hair is brown, my eyebrows are raven black, and still are). I wore skorts (hideous combination of shorts and a skirt), white turtlenecks, World Wildlife Fund panda logo T-shirts, and ankle socks. When I was 13, I traded my glasses for contacts, scrounged in my mom's makeup drawer for something to cover a hideous zit on my chin, which led to green eye shadow and not the slightest clue on how eyeliner worked (and regrettably went out in public with it anyways), and had cut my hair to shoulder length (but still eh in looks). My overbite was corrected with 3 years of stabbing wire. 

So throughout that time (and today), I still have no idea if someone is flirting with me or not. It took me a few days to realize I was asked to prom my freshman year of high school by a junior. It took me a year before I registered that a friend that confessed his love for me did it in a not friendship or brotherly love, but actual love. When I am clearly being flirted with, I have no idea what to do, so I shift around uncomfortably and find a way to escape.  How can I know what to do or have realized it when it had never happened to me, ever? 

Gretchen thanks puberty for the years it screwed her over, because now she doesn't look too bad. If you're more interested in her writing than her looks, visit her site: writinggales.wordpress.com