This I Believe

Diane - Beaverton, Oregon
Entered on September 21, 2007
Age Group: Under 18

I don’t believe in change, I believe in growth. I’m beyond the whole philosophical belief that people change like the seasons and that they’ve magically turned into something new. To me, change is becoming something completely different from what you were, a transformation, or an evolution of sorts. Growth in a sense can also mean change, but in my opinion, you’re still the same person, so you haven’t changed at all. I’ve experienced enough to know that life has many things to offer and that you shouldn’t deny who you are and what you’ve experienced.

An honest opinion, some people might see the word ‘change’ as something we all do. I can easily change my clothes, meaning I’d switch out whatever I was wearing. Or, I could change the channel and watch something new. But that’s the problem, we don’t change, we don’t switch who we are, we’re still the same person. The only difference is we’ve gained more knowledge and experienced more. We’ve grown.

I went through a lot of phases in my life that were fun, annoying, depressing, and weird. I remember my first phase was a punk-Avril-Lavigne phase, I thought I was hot stuff and then I went through my Emo phase, where I was always depressed and alone. Then I went through my ‘gangsta’ phase and started listening to rap, that didn’t last long, and finally I went through my quiet, stuck-up, loves only my boyfriend phase. That, in my opinion, was the worst phase ever. I went through a lot just to figure out who I was and grew out of all of them. Again, people would always tell me how much I’ve changed, but really, they were all learning experiences from which I was growing from.

The thing I learned most about my self growth was that you should never be fake to yourself. I believe that’s my biggest reason for going through so many phases. It’s because I was so confused about who I was, I should have just stopped for a moment and just be myself. After I became this completely fake person, trying to be straight for the longest time, I was in a 4 year relationship with someone I thought I’d marry. Turns out, he was an even bigger fake than I was, and that opened my eyes completely. Since then, I’ve come out of the closet, told my parents I’m a lesbian, I do what I love everyday, I’m very open, and I love meeting new people.

Deep down inside, everyone is the same person, only a little bit more grown up. It took me years to realize who I was and to be true to myself and love my life and live everyday like it was my last. I’m very happy with my life now, and in my opinion, ever since I’ve opened up and been myself, it’s rubbed onto my family and we’re all open now.