What Made Me…..ME

Kristin - La Crescent, Minnesota
Entered on March 17, 2009
Age Group: Under 18

I believe I only have one life to live and that I have the ability to stay strong no matter what barrier comes in my path to success. No one can steer me away from my hopes and dreams. This is what I believe.

Nearly everyone has overcome an incident in life that has created an entire new beginning. My aptitude to concur all problems and criticisms in my life has only just begun.

It took me hours to get ready that morning, but of course, I tried too hard. Starting the morning off with a broken curling iron, a shirt that was in the wash, and brand new American Eagle jeans that were MIA, I knew my day would be wonderful.

It started the minute, or even the second I put my foot in the quiet, cold classroom. Heads cocked my way to evaluate the newcomer, but instant unsatisfactory looks appeared on the students’ faces. First impressions became evident through their many disgusted expressions. Eyes scoped me up and down, examining every thread on my clothing to every hair on my body. Who was I to fool? I had braces, tattered-looking hair, and an off-brand t-shirt.

Impeding glares had already informed me of their disapproval. Fifty minutes to go until the end of the class, yet the black hand on the clock rounded the circle about as fast as the moon travels around the sun. An enormous pile of gunk seemed permanently settled at the bottom of my stomach. “Ding, ding, ding”. Finally the bell rang for lunch!

Wait, lunch was going to be dreadful. Everyone knows how it goes. The popular girls, the band members, the smart kids, and the partiers all sit at their own tables in their own arrangement. Cliques are nearly impossible to break and who’s ever going to accept me-the under-dressed new student? Moving to such a small school, I quickly found out the reality of it all. Basically everyone in the school grew up together since they were in diapers, and I am an outsider trying to butt into their long-lasting friendship.

I force myself into the gossiping, chaotic lunchroom. A heart that’s about to pound out of my chest, hands that are about to shake nearly off their joints, and eyes that are on the brink of tears, my appearance at Esko High school seems nonexistent.

Making my way towards an empty table doesn’t seem too bad. After a few bites of a mushy peanut butter and jelly sandwich and a couple gulps of a grape propel, giggling girls take a seat at my table. Between their moments of laughter, one of the girls decides to invite me to their end.

“What would they want to talk to me for?” Hesitantly I scoot over to the popular world of girls, also known as gossip girls. I talk to them. They ask me a bunch of questions. No, they ask me two questions: where are you from and why did you move here. P.S.—They don’t care because the next moment involves me being excluded from their conversation. Having already finished my lunch, my urgency to leave gravitates. I am only hoping my next hour teacher likes me…

I believe there is a reason for everything and that my constant struggle to fit in embedded a stronger, more confident spirit in me. Although my semester at Esko High School was dreadful and unbelievably lonely, I learned a lifelong lesson. No matter what a person looks like on the outside, my heart will guide me to only judge a person by the inside. Everyone in this world has feelings and no one deserves to be put through what I was put through.

All I wanted was to fit in, but my experience has taught me that it isn’t worth it. I don’t need the approval of others to be a “cool”. I don’t need the approval of others to be who I want to be. Most importantly, I don’t need the approval of others to be me. I am proud of who I am, just the way I am.