Today, I’m drinking “real fruit tea” which my aunt and uncle sent me. It’s tea bags with real fruit inside, so it tastes extra fresh.
I want to state that I am not the same person I was before, or a few years ago, or even a couple months ago.
I was living aimlessly, without purpose and direction. I had no plan, just hoped everything would work out. It’s not that I was expecting everything to come easy — I always understood life is full of challenges. But I thought the key to overcoming life’s struggles was to try pleasing everyone and being who they expect me to be.
Instead of being myself, I was bending to everyone’s mold of who they thought I was. I was terrified of the world, worried that if I couldn’t please everyone, I wouldn’t survive. I thought people would go out of their way to harm me if I wasn’t perfect in their eyes. It wasn’t fake-ness and it wasn’t a way of getting people to like me, it was literally a survival mechanism.
But I’ve grown stronger in recent times and I’m working on completely changing who I am — not to be someone else, but to be the person who has always been hiding underneath the shell.
My whole life, people have never really taken me seriously. I’ve always had a youthful appearance and looked young for my age. Something about the way I speak and act seems to give off a feeling of carefreeness. So people, especially strangers, but even close friends too, assume I don’t really care about much.
However my family can tell you that I am a devoted and dedicated person, even through childhood which is typically thought of as “the carefree years.” Most especially my sister will tell you how serious I am, and how serious I always have been.
The issue is that people judge a book by its cover and they have always seen me as someone who lacks awareness, someone with carelessness. This could not be further from the truth. But I’ve let people believe this, because I don’t want to let them down, don’t want to make them question their judgment.
Now I see how reckless this mindset was. These days I am perfectly happy to force people to open up their minds and rethink their judgment. These days I hope people know I’m serious, no matter what they assume. I will no longer fall to people’s perception of me. Instead, they will have to be the ones to change their perception by opening their narrow minds.
If you are someone who “goes with the wind” then there is absolutely nothing wrong with that — as long as it’s your true character, as long as it’s not merely an idea of who people expect you to be. People pleasing is dangerous and unhealthy, and we all should be our true selves. Be who you were born to be, not who people expect you to be.
This has been a winding road and I won’t lie, sometimes I slip back to my people pleasing ways, or my directionless ways. But I do come back stronger each time.
This started before quarintine and before the pandemic; this is something I have been pondering for a very long time. And if the world goes back to “normal,” it doesn’t mean I’m going to regress. It’s not just a phase. True change takes time and patience. And I’m not changing into someone new, but finally showing who I have been this whole time!