This I Believe

Alex - Buda, Texas
Entered on September 8, 2006
Age Group: Under 18
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I think people need to break free of their social ties and just be themselves, regardless of the repercussions.

I’m pretty sure that you know me, whether it’s by my face, my name, or the weird, gimpy walk I have from my bad knees. Nonetheless, you have probably seen me around, thanks to the fact that I’m really a social group drifter of sorts. Now I’m probably not around you every day, but if you think hard enough I’d bet good money that we’ve probably talked once or twice.

It hasn’t always been this way for me though; my social style didn’t really come into being until 8th grade. See, when I first moved to Texas (in 7th grade) I was a quiet, super-shy, book nerd kind of kid. I still remember when a girl in my history class that year didn’t notice I even existed until two weeks before school was out. Point is, I was a nobody on the public scene, a non-entity.

At the start of my 8th grade year I realized that being confined to my few friends I met in the alpha program wasn’t how I wanted to live my school life. Instead I decided to branch out, to tap into other cliques, just to see what it was like. I played basketball, and met the “jocks” whom other groups viewed as being total jerks. Turns out that everybody I met was alright, just nobody had ever bothered to talk to them. After my success with meeting the guys in basketball, I figured, why not keep going? Next I changed up my wardrobe (the short-sleeved button-downs and undershirts had to go). After a quick exchange with sirs Abercrombie and Fitch, I found an inlet to the “prep” group. Right off the bat I found out that like the “jocks”, the “preps” were just a bunch of kids who bothered to care how they dressed. It wasn’t some sort of snobby, social hierarchy, just a bunch of people who like to look good.

Well, the story only gets better from there, and now I really can’t claim membership to any one social group. I found out that you don’t have to be satisfied with just filling a small slot in a tiny box you think you want to be labeled under. Getting out there and taking bits and pieces from everything you love is what makes life fun. I’m a prep, a jock, a nerd, and an ROTC cadet. I hang with the band people, and yeah I’m in the choir too. That’s me, and participating in everything and getting to know everybody is what makes me happy. Just being “you” is so much easier than fitting into a pre-made mould. So bust out of your confinement and be you. As for me, I’m going to make sure that everybody knows who I am way before the last two weeks of school.