Every girl in middle school wanted to be seen as popular like the cool kids, right? Or maybe it was elementary or highschool… I know I was one of them.

Everytime the newest smartphone came out, it was the popular thing to run to the store to blow your savings on it. If it wasn’t a new smartphone, it was the newest pair of shoes, clothes, and cars.

Sometimes it would seem like the highschool parking lot would be full of impalas and that jesus shoes ruled the halls.

It feels like only a select few had the courage to break the trends. Whether they wore sparkly cowboy boots to school or drove their dad’s purple mustang to school, they didn’t care about fitting in.

I was also one of those people. But I also didn’t want to be seen. Certainly that purple mustang caught attention. With so many eyes in the halls, I never had the confidence for self expression, so instead I made it my mission to go about unseen.

High School was some of my most miserable years because of this. I didn’t know who I was.

It wasn’t until after graduation that I finally started to find my identity. I had to get up, fall down, and get right back up again. I did this over and over for a while until I became true to myself and found some direction.

Now, I’m progressing with myself as a person, and I’m getting more and more content with that.

Thinking back, I wonder how many others are still just as miserable as I was. Trying to fit into society’s standards and pretending to be someone that they’re not. Not everyone has the bravery to stand up for themselves as they are.

What if that girl driving the same old impala dreamed of having a diesel instead? But maybe society said that trucks are for boys. What if that guy wearing yet another American Fighter T-Shirt wanted to wear leather jackets? But maybe society said that those are for low lives. What if your best friend wanted to stay in their comfy wear every day, and always looked like they just got out of bed? Would you judge them for what they wear? Or ask if something was the matter? Maybe they’re a bit like me and like to dress for comfort, or maybe an underlying depression finally caught up to them.

I know that I noticed my happiness increasing the less I cared about what others thought of me. I proudly drive foreign cars (Mazdas), wear whatever I want and whenever I want, got a sleeve tattoo at 19, and even made a blog to post about whatever is on my mind. Who knows, maybe I’m totally out of the box with these things, but it did come from four miserable years of observation in highschool hallways. It’s where the most drama is at.

Unfortunately, some people never outgrow the highschool drama. They always feel the need to have the newest everything, only to look and feel like just another member of society.

Why is it such a crime to be different in society? Not every tattoo maniac or colored person is out to hurt others. Someone who is gay, bisexual, or lesbian isn’t automatically going to attempt sexual assault.

What I’ve realized over time, is that we all just want to be accepted. I’m also proud of society for being more open to those who are different, and those who embrace it, as compared to the past. It’s like confidence is what’s popular now. So what if you’re a math nerd or play a saxophone better than anyone else? People might actually like you for who you are, and your talents along with it.

Think of how boring it would be if literally everyone looked and acted the same. I’m pretty sure this was something we were all told as kids.

I’ve heard many times over the years how school is like prison. I never really cared for that phrase, given that I’ve actually been in a prison. But, maybe it wasn’t just school that made one feel trapped. Maybe it was the confinements of civilization.

One thought on “Freedom

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