This I Believe

Ashley - Baltimore, Maryland
Entered on July 25, 2007
Age Group: Under 18

This I Believe…”

I believe in ME! In everything that separates me from the rest, and makes me who I am. You know, the things that give me drive and motivation. After all, what would the world be like if were all the same?

I use to want to be like the “in crowd.” I wanted to dress like them, walk like them, talk like then, look like them. It even got to the point when at a time I wanted to be them.

I had an experience where I tried my hardest to be like “them.” You see the “them” was a group of girls who I thought had it all. The attention, the looks, the clothes, and even the money. Everything they had I wanted but at no cost at all. So I wasted money on clothes that I would not usually wear, I acted stupid to prevent myself from being made fun. I even belittled myself so that when the other girls did it, it would not feel so bad. Once I realized being them only sank me further in the pool of invisibility. I came to the understanding that I was not only losing myself, the values I held so dear, but what is was that made me different.

I have learned that people will talk and judge no matter what or who you are, so why not have these people talk about me, and not me trying to be someone else. I appreciate all my specialties and flaws. From being shy, modest, stubborn, playful, practical, and even sometimes a challenger. It’s me! I admire the person I see in the mirror being proud that I am no longer a duplicate of someone else but simply me.

Stacy Charter once stated, “There comes a time when you have to stand up and shout: This is me damn it! I look the way I look, think the way I think, feel the way I feel, love the way I love! I am a whole complex package. Take me… or leave me. Accept me – or walk away! Do not try to make me feel like less of a person, just because I don’t fit your idea of who I should be and don’t try to change me to fit your mold. If I need to change, I alone will make that decision. When you are strong enough to love yourself 100%, good and bad – you will be amazed at the opportunities that life presents you.”

So whether you are short or tall, thick or slim, wear glasses or have braces, limp or wobble, smile or frown. You were made to stand, and never forget that is what makes you special.