This I Believe

Carson - Fircrest, Washington
Entered on January 18, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
  • Podcasts

    Sign up for our free, weekly podcast of featured essays. You can download recent episodes individually, or subscribe to automatically receive each podcast. Learn more.

  • FAQ

    Frequently asked questions about the This I Believe project, educational opportunities and more...

  • Top Essays USB Drive

    This USB drive contains 100 of the top This I Believe audio broadcasts of the last ten years, plus some favorites from Edward R. Murrow's radio series of the 1950s. It's perfect for personal or classroom use! Click here to learn more.

I believe in individuality. I believe that a person is free to express themselves without being judged. Without everyone pointing and laughing whenever they see an intelligent person (nerd) with his pants up high above their waist. It doesn’t matter what people say, it’s what you believe about yourself.

In elementary school, I was a nerd. My grades were good, had some good friends and had a good time. But I know that some people made fun of me when my back was turned. Even today, some people make fun of me. I wore dorky clothes and gel in my hair hoping I would be cool, didn’t work so well.

After I moved to a new town and a new school, I automatically made new friends. In fourth grade, there was this mentally challenged kid named Jacob. Nobody liked him. Every thought he had “Jacob Cooties.” I decided to be his friend because I felt sorry for him. But after two weeks with him, I got to know him better.

Once I entered middle school, my whole life turned around. In sixth grade, barely anyone I knew from elementary school was there. I was very shy. But then I met my first best friend who goes to my high school today. His name is Sean. He and 12 other friends were my friends all throughout middle school. 7th grade was easy. That is when I became kind of popular. I went out with this girl who knew a lot of popular people and I eventually became friends with them.


In 8th grade, my life was good. I had great friends, a new girlfriend I’m still with today, and good peers. At my middle school, band was probably the most important thing in my life. Band was my favorite subject in school. But, today I am afraid to take band in high school, in fear of being made fun of. As my brother would say, “Band is for geeks.” I went along with it. In my school, there were a lot of mentally challenged kids there and everyone made fun of them, including me. I went along with the flow, just to be safe.

Now, today, I’m 15 years old going on 16. I’m in high school. I thought high school would be fun; well it is if you aren’t a freshman. Freshmen get treated like crap just because we are in a lower class. They judge us on what we wear, what we look like, or the popular phrase, “Are you (insert siblings name here)’s (insert brother or sister).”

As Bill Gates would say, “Be nice to nerds, they could be your boss” Don’t people judge you, you are the pilot of your own life and you control whether you follow the others or fly alone. Don’t change your attitude, looks, and book-smarts to fit in with the “In Crowd.” Be yourself and no one else.