Self Belief

Lauren - Miami, Florida
Entered on December 2, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30
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I believe in myself. Now this has no dictionary definition, in fact everyone’s definition for this may be different. Here is my definition, believing in myself: I am able to do anything I put my mind to; in the end, I am all I have left. Growing up, my mom was always out of town for extended periods of time for business, and my dad always seemed to be busy as well. Therefore, I was given a lot of freedom and because of it I grew up rather quickly. I learned to do things for myself only because no one else was there to do them for me. I was raised to have an open mind, question everything, do what I believed was right, not necessarily what everyone else was doing, and most importantly, do whatever makes me happy.

I took what I had been taught for so long, and began to really think about it and apply it to my life, making my junior year of high school a huge turning point in my life. This is where I found both happiness and truth. I found happiness by finally establishing my sexuality within myself and out to others, and truth by learning who would honestly always be there for me, not just say it. Coming out is probably one of the hardest things to do, and having more than half of your family and a large fraction of your friends turn their backs on you does not make it much easier. It is devastating.

Initially after officially coming out, I was all alone during a time where I felt most vulnerable. There were countless tear-filled nights of solitude, but like they say, through bad comes good. This is when I finally started to believe in myself for the first time. I was no longer dependant upon anyone. I had only myself. During this time, I learned my self-worth, my pride, and like I said before, I learned what true happiness was. This period of time was the most stressful yet exhilarating time of my life.

Everyday I face problems because of what I chose. Not only are the people I meet on a day-to-day basis very quick to judge in situations like this, because they are not open to new ideas, but still, a year and a half, almost 2 years later, members of my family do not talk to/acknowledge me. Surprisingly this does not bother me at all anymore, because they are so uptight and close-minded, and I know they will never be as happy as I am, and that is such a shame. If they, like myself, just stopped caring so much about what others think about them, their lives would be so much easier.

By believing in myself, I do not let society shape me. I stand up for what I believe in, which is the most satisfying feeling and nobody can take that away from me.