This I Believe

Amy - Louisville, Colorado
Entered on December 15, 2006
Age Group: Under 18

I Can be Myself, and No One Else

I set myself apart from others. I believe in being true to myself. I know that I have not been perfect my whole life and have not always made myself happy. In all my sixteen years, I have made a fair amount of mistakes, but they make me who I am and push me to always stay true to whom I really am. I came from a small school where I knew everyone and everyone knew me, the real me. During freshman year, I felt lost. I saw all the different types of people and all the different activities they partook in. I was not sure exactly where I belonged, what group would accept me, nor what I would say to be a “cool” or “popular” kid. Now it is clear to me, popularity is only what you make it out to be. I said many things that made me fit into groups and acted in ways that would make people think I was cool. This fooled others, but it did not fool me. I wanted to be liked and have no enemies. I would restrain myself from saying my moral beliefs that I felt would be put down by others. I ask myself, why would I not stand up for what I believe in? I did not stand up for myself because I did not want to be judged. I did not realize I was letting others shape me, think for me, and make me into what they wanted. Soon enough however, I did not like how others thought, and I was getting bored not being able to be myself. Through sophomore year I made new friends, tried new things, and started feeling comfortable being myself again. I took a hard look back at the previous year and realized that I had fun, but could have enjoyed myself more if I just did everything the way I wanted. One can get so caught up in the “popular” thing to do, but it is not always right. If you let others tell you how to be you, then who is thinking for them? When i stopped being myself, I began to lose the important things that made me unique. I am now a junior in high school and have come a long way. I let God help me with my decisions. I do not care what people think of me. I stand up for what I believe in, and I refuse to do things that disappoint me. After all, if one spends all their time being perfect for others, then how does one continue to grow as an individual? I have to live with me for the rest of my life. I will not lose who I am, because I will stay true to myself.