This I Believe

Yvette - Harlingen, Texas
Entered on March 11, 2008

I believe in the freedom of personality. Being a junior in high school where “cliques” are a common sight if you take a step back and look, I have heard statements such as “freaks,” “losers,” “weirdoes,” “preps,” “jocks,” “goths,” and “emo.” What is normal? If students are calling each other names across the hall, then that must mean that there are different definitions of ‘normal.’ Everyone has a different personality. It’s what makes the world go round. But, labeling a person as something different can often pull them down, restricting them to the belief that they are only one thing.

I am a female Hispanic. I attend a high school where Hispanic blood dominates that of any other ethnicity. I do not speak Spanish. Up until I took my first Spanish class this year, I never even attempted to speak it. Most are surprised by this. “You don’t speak Spanish?” They ask with incredulous expressions. No, I don’t speak Spanish. There’s more to me than just my heritage. I’m a mellow, easy-going, at-times-outspoken-but-most-of-the-time-quiet, lover of rock, pop, country, punk, metal and alternative music. I hold the rank as cadet Sergeant First Class in the JROTC program at our school, I am a member of the Key Club, and I have a fascination with anime. My fascination has actually been ridiculed and called an ‘obsession.’ I often wonder why. I believe I have a wider vision of life than most, I accept the ups and downs, and I surround myself with ‘out-of-the-ordinary’ people.

For example; my friends are a variety of labels. They range from out going rockers with independent minds to timid Einsteins with open hearts and to anime freaks that are not afraid to dress up as their favorite character and roam around town. Are they crazy? Not hardly. Well, it’s debatable. They’re a colorful bunch of friends who are comfortable with their take on life and how the world perceives them. I don’t refer to any of them as labels. These colorful people have accepted me with my shades of blue and yellow into their lives. Not because of the clothes I wear or the way I talk; but because our personalities mingle in a way that makes life that much more interesting.

There is no normal. In my opinion, the word ‘normal’ was created by a power-greedy monarch who wanted his people to stay under his control and put their imaginative actions under lock and key. The time to polish the key and use it to unlock this hold is long over due. Free yourself from the chains of peer pressure, and be who you want to be, because everyone has their own personality. This is what I believe.