The journey of finding myself

By Angelica  |   From : United States  |   School : Lehigh Senior High School

When I was younger I never fit in with the kids around me. I was always the different one. And growing up with being the “different” kid grows with you. I would always be asked questions from the other kids like how come I was a girl with hairy arms and how come I looked different and other things. So as I got older I decided I didn’t want to be different from the other kids, so I would try my best to fit in with everyone by doing what everyone else was doing. This caused me to be self conscious growing up because all I wanted was to fit in with everyone else.  As I got older and went on into middle school it got worse because I went to a school where everyone was the same. The people around me didn’t really like change so when I got there it was hard at first. But I let myself decide that the best option was to try to fit in and just be like the rest. 

Doing this I later on found a group of friends who had the “same interests” as me. But the thing is I didn’t like any of the things they liked, I just wanted them to like me so I wouldn’t be by myself. I used to allow others to influence me and what I decided and what I liked. I remember one time it was during my 8th grade year me and my friends were at lunch and I had said something in spanish and they all started laughing. I was so confused about what was going on until I realized what I had said. None of them understood what I said and then later kept asking me what did you say or saying that they didn’t know I could speak spanish. This moment made me think that speaking Spanish was embarrassing. That was one of the first times that I realized that they knew nothing about me because all I wanted to do was to be like them. After this happened I wished it never did because they started to look at me differently and I hated it. 

The rest of my 8th grade year continued just as that they would always see me as different because of the one time. I would always try to make up for it by just being a follower to them. Everything they did I did until it got bad to where I decided to make a decision that I would have never made on my own. After I realized what I did I regretted my decision so fast I wish I could take it back and never do it. So when school ended and when summer started I realized that the people that I had spent all this time with weren’t going to go to school with me.

 I felt a relief of not having to pretend to be someone else just so they would like me. But then the fear started to settle in me. I didn’t know who I was without trying to fit in with people around me. So that summer I took a good look in the mirror and said who are you. That’s when I decided that I was done trying to fit in and that it is always better to be yourself and express everything about you how you want to. I started to explore and discover different things that I did and didn’t like. When I meet new people I would introduce myself first. I wouldn’t wait to hear their answer to base mine on theirs. I wanted people to learn and know about the real me. I didn’t want to try and fit in anymore so they would like me. I wanted people to like me for me. Doing this was a hard journey for me from always agreeing with people and being a follower to deciding to say my own opinion and do what I want to do. Along this journey I decided one day to go back to church and that was one of the best decisions of my life. Going back to church has made such a big and impactful change in my life. It helped me realize how important of a person I was to be myself and not worry what others will think of me and that being myself is the biggest thing I should be proud of.

 What I would want people to learn from my story is that you should never have to worry about what others have to think about you because everyone will have their own opinion about you but the only thing that matters is that you are yourself and that you love the type of person you are. In the future I want to help more people know that it is normal and ok to be different from others.

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