Photo credits to my brother.
Teenagehood is a prominent time where ideals are challenged by expectations set on you. Peer pressure is such a hard barrier to succumb under. Think of any movie you may have watched growing up as an adolescent, or just think about nearly any movie you watched as a kid. High School Musical, How to Train Your Dragon, The Princess Diaries (now that's a major throwback) are examples. Often , the ultimate decision comes down to us. Unless a person makes a public show of it, their inward battle of consciousness between these two feuding sides will be private in the confines of their mind.
For me, ideals and beliefs are things that I stand heavily by, not easily breaking down or giving in defending them. Harmony is an aspect I seek in many social relationships, but this doesn't waver my support to these ideals. My life is dictated by them-- this is why I'm such a terrible liar, when people ask me to tell the truth. A bickering conscious yells in my mind all the time. Sometimes, I admit, several things that I believe don't have their mindset in the right place, and others would have to correct me, which then, I'll move aside, despite my sensitivity to criticism. When people ask me to go to more parties or stop socializing only with books or even asking me to get my eyebrows waxed, which was what I was asked today, all of these requests I turned down. They aren't me. They're not something that I personally comfortable with.
Over the past several months, so many events have gone up and have challenged my beliefs many times before. Luckily, I have friends that will have ideals and values that harmonize close to mine, but still. This may not always be the case. I'm kind of sluggish about the idea heading back to school next Monday, but graduation is creeping up closer than anyone thinks will appear. Everyone from my town will soon disperse themselves to various high education schools and soon will just start working. The temptations that once surround have the chance of adding up the older you get. People saying to stay true to yourself so much that it's nearly becomes contrite.
Relationships are also tested. Friends slowly drift apart, new friends pop in for a year before being splintered away once again. This past school year, the one which ended in May, marked as the top year where I've gotten into the most heated debates and arguments which luckily, we were able to overcome most of them. Many people don't have that opportunity. A lot of people don't notice, but over half of my friends have either moved away or are becoming exchange students this upcoming school year. This is the time, your teenage years, when your support system will help you out from time to time, but they can only do so much. Ultimately, you make the final call.
How are you to cope in a world that asks you to slowly become something that you simply don't want yourself to be?
If you have free time and you feel everything just crashing on top of you, just stop what you're doing and calm down. Get off your phone. Clear your thoughts. Do you know that period before bed a lot of you experience where you're trying to fall asleep but you're too busy contemplating about the aspects of your life? Try to enter that state. Your mind is practically your own sanctuary, your own space, and that is the time to sort through all the voices and cleanup which ones you want to keep and which ones you want just to stay. My family always wonders why I spend so much time locked up in my room, and this is half of the reason. Now, this is the other.
One of the things that I learned in high school is the importance of self-care, not in the physical aspect, but in the mental and social aspects of it. You're constantly being tossed and torn apart as if a miniature, athletic coach version of you sat on your right shoulder, telling you everything you need to do, and a slobbish, pizza chilling version of you is telling you to take everything slow. You do not need to please everyone, but the one person you do need to ultimately please is yourself. Read, write, eat food. Do what comforts you. Over the past summer I've been working on my novel. If you know anything about novel writing, it's can be a draining process in all aspects. Every day though, I've been making sure to keep in touch with the Olympics (which I may be doing a post about) because they are my life and have been an obsession ever since Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Games came out in 2008 on the Nintendo DS (the original one, obviously). I've also been snail mailing several people.
Blogging is one of my past times, and it still is. While it hasn't been a walk in the park for me these past several months, several recap posts I've written these past few months recaps everything I've done, and to some degree, they've been one of most exciting highlights of my year. I've gotten to play softball and meet people who studied on the opposite side of the building. I interacted with fifty different on weekdays for rehearsals. I accidentally spilled glue all over the cabinet and listen to the library coordinators talking about gender-bent Twilight. These events were all tiring, but they're all worth it, and most importantly, they all fall under a range where unrealistic expectations (which I'm also not comfortable with) aren't set and my values can thrive.
I'm not ready for this school year to start... but if I'm going to have to get through this, my beliefs need to be firmly planted, and every once in awhile, I just need to relax and calm down. Hopefully, readers, you all can remember and do the same, as well.