nature-sunset-person-woman-largeMy life, although short, has been full of experiences so far. I have learned many lessons through my mistakes, and I am forever grateful for that. When I was about 12, I started to hide myself away in my room. I never left my bed, and I barely talked to anyone. I was really struggling with finding myself. I went to school with the average kids you see walking around in a small, country town. They were the common, disruptive kids who found humor in other people’s misery. Growing up in a loud family with rowdy boys, I was in turn a talkative, bubbly girl who never shut up when told, and that had a negative impact on my social life. The girls I hung out with were calm and normal but EXTREMELY judgmental, and I thought there was something wrong with me when I received stares for being outspoken.

Through the years I started to talk less, and sometimes I pretended that my mouth was sewn shut so I wouldn’t say the wrong thing. This has been my greatest regret: letting snide remarks and comments determine how I lived my life. After my bout of depression through 6th grade, I found some solace within people who were just like me. I still remember those hard times to this day, but I try to not let them get to me. I am now a soon-to-be junior in high school, and after years of solitude and misery, I have finally learned that life is not about finding yourself; it’s about creating yourself.

I managed to make my way out of that sixth-grade hell by putting myself out there more, and one thing that has really sparked my interest over the years is adventure. Even simply going downtown to get some coffee with my mom or dad has really made me content with my life. Getting outside and exploring things I’ve seen so many times before and seeing them in a different light is so eye-opening. I’ve started to take hikes and go to different places I’ve never been. I’ve been going on road trips, eating new foods, going to new ice cream places, buying new lotions, eating organic foods, etc. Everything in life is an adventure — even something as simple as changing your everyday routine.

I myself have never had any willpower or any motivation to do anything, and I still don’t all the time, but pushing myself to go out and explore new things has really helped me cope with stress and anxiety. As long as I’m 100% comfortable, nothing can stand in my way. Don’t get me wrong: I still have hard times, as does everyone, and I still can only go somewhere if my parents accompany me, but who said that was a bad thing? If you’re comfortable with your life, then don’t listen to people who tell you that you need to change. Life isn’t all fun and games. It’s hard, but you have to get out and make those hard times worth it by living your life to the fullest. Nothing worthwhile comes easy.

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