Seeing Beyond Our Appearances

Cecilia - Los Angeles, California
Entered on April 21, 2009
Age Group: 18 - 30

John Wooden, the famous UCLA basketball coach, once said, “Be more concerned with your character than with your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.”

I believe that being who you are is much more important than what others think you are. I’ve had many experiences with people criticizing me for the way I look and the way I dress. These people are not only teenagers, but also adults.

When I was in the eighth grade, I really wanted to be in the school government, but I needed to have a “C” average. I had a “B” average and a couple of A’s. I went to four different offices: the parent center, deans’ office, attendance office, and my counselor’s office. All these people had something to say when they first saw me. They always had to check very clearly in every damn computer because they wouldn’t believe that I wasn’t a trouble maker.

When I went to my counselor’s office, she told me that she couldn’t sign my paper because I needed to obtain a “C” average. All she needed was to stare at me from head to toes and she assumed that I was a trouble maker. I told her to check my grades, which she did, and she was really surprised to see that my record was almost perfect. Well of course she gave me a little fake smile and signed my paper.

These kinds of things make me wonder how many people can “judge a book by its cover.” That’s a saying I really love because it goes so perfectly with me. It means that you shouldn’t judge someone by the way they look, but for their personality.

Other people say many things about me, like that I’m conceited, self-centered, and the one I get the most is that I care mostly about guys. Well, that is not true! I am certainly not self-centered, and I don’t consider being conceited is even worth the time when I know perfectly well that there is always going to be somebody better looking than me.

Many people may also believe that I’m going to end up like a low-life, but all I care about is finishing high school, going to college to obtain a good career, and becoming someone in this life. Guys will definitely be a distraction for me to reach my goals, so I’m guessing staying away for a while might not hurt anybody. A friend is always the one thing you need the most.

I believe that I came to this life to satisfy myself and succeed for my own satisfaction, and not for others. People are always going to be in the way to criticize me and try to bring me down for my reputation and for my looks, but I will always keep my head up in front of all those people. I may do things that might seem wrong in the eyes of others, and stories might be made up to damage me and make me seem wrong, but in the end what truly matters is what I think of myself.