This I Believe

Quyen (Andy) - El Monte, California
Entered on June 14, 2007

I believe in being myself. To fit in, to be like others, to be liked, to conform, these things were all that I once wanted. However, after trying for so long, I learned a few things. I can never be like them. There is no use trying. I was born different and I can never change that. Then, I realize, I do not want to be like them. Being the same and conforming is boring. Faking interest and pretending to understand is tiring. I am myself and when I am myself, I am free. I do not have to laugh when I do not feel like it. I do not have to learn and memorize the names of all the rappers whose song I hate and actors whose films I do not watch, or at least, having pretending to care just to fit in. Shakespeare said that the world is a stage and everyone is an actor. Well, I have lost my mask.

I can cry when I feel like crying. I can laugh without holding back. I can be true to my emotion. I tell people truth but, in their opinions, gross and disgusting stories because I like to tell gross and disgusting stories. I am unique. There are those who are as smart, as sarcastic, as egotistic, and as social ignorant as I am. There may be those who write using vocabularies they cannot pronounce correctly, as I do. But I bet that there is not a single person in this world who is all these qualities, and speaks five languages, but still cannot finish reciting the alphabet and is terribly deficient at grammar. I am an atheist but the fictional character I want to be is god. No one talks like I do and probably no one pronounces the word “sword” like I do. I believe people who can truly say what they really want to say and be who they want to be without being restricted by external force have the true meaning of freedom.

Increasingly, society had become more and more homogenous. Everyone rushes here and there, adhering to a strict and repeating schedule day after day. My life will probably turn out to be the same as well. Going to college, graduate, get jobs, and work until I retire. I am afraid, because then I am just a shadow in the crowd. I want to have more in life. I want to be able to achieve the goals I set for myself right now, right here. By maintaining my individualism, I hope that in the future I won’t forget my goals, or if I did forget, I want to be reminded again of all the aspirations I had as a teenager, ready to confront the world.