Iman Berry, 17, Ontario
Insecurity is a sensation that most of us feel. It may be a feeling that is minimal in your everyday thoughts or it may be something that consumes your life. You cannot let your insecurities get the best of you. I made my insecurities my recognizable and best features. I empowered myself and took charge of my life.
When I was in the fourth grade, I went to a private school, I had previously gone to another school in the community. I went to this school because my parents and I wanted to expand my horizons and give me access to new opportunities. At this school I was taunted because I was very outgoing. It seems odd, the outgoing one being picked on? But bullying occurs in the strangest of ways. People will usually hurt people to make them feel better about themselves.
This constant teasing got the better of me. I left this school after 3 months of torment from these students. I wasn’t crushed, and I got to go back to my old school with all my old friends. But I even though I was removed from the situation, their words stuck with me. I became increasingly quiet and timid over the years. This change in behaviour could have been easily mistaken as “just growing up”; however, this was not the case. I was always embarrassed, scared of saying something lame, so I stuck to myself. This phase of my life continued for a while. Up until the tenth grade my personality was one that was not really a reflection of who I was.
Well, let me tell you what happened in the tenth grade. Being rather introverted, it was difficult to make new friends. I joined a club at my school called DECA. There were a bunch of people that I had never met in the club. It was like I was in a Miley Cyrus song “I didn’t know anyone and I was nervous”. I eventually began talking to a few girls; they had such exuberant personalities, and they were like that all the time. I made a discovery: speaking your mind does not make you lame, it makes you interesting, and we are all different people. If we worry about what others think all the time, we will live in a constant state of fear and pressure, and I’ll be the first to say, that is not okay. I learned to be more comfortable with myself with these friends around. They taught me that I was not lame, I was interesting, I was funny and that I was worth it. One of my major insecurities became my defining feature. I am a bubbly person who realizes now that my insecurities don’t own me.
I’ll let you all in on a little secret: people aren’t as scary as they seem, there are people that aren’t as agreeable, but there is someone out there for all of us. All you have to do is give them a smile and see where that takes you!