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There Is No Running From Judgment

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Nor is there somewhere you can go to hide from becoming a victim of the sinister act of being judged. Anyone can do it. Therefore, everyone does. Having a conclusion drawn based off of one’s thoughts or their opinion, whether they are right or wrong, is simply inescapable. It’s up to the patsy who has been declared as a target to decide whether or not these inferred acts of character profiling will phase them or not.

The changes some people force themselves to undergo to fit in are truly remarkable. Having been a ‘lifer’ in the Lake Travis Independent School District, I have had the pleasure in a first hand visual as the peers and other fellow students of mine grow up and made something of their lives. Unfortunately, I have also had to witness the self-destruction of those who were not as strong as the others and crumbled under the impersonal leer thrown at them by this caged-in society. At Lake Travis, your clique is your reputation. There are no ifs ands or buts about it. You are whom you hang out with, the perfect high school stereotype, should be hung upon a banner for all those walking through the doors for the first time to see. Not only would it be for everyone to see, it would be a warning. This is the kind of warning I would have liked to see as I walked through the entrance of Lake Travis as a freshman.

Instead, I, and many others, had to find this out the hard way. Watching all my best friends turn into something they’re not just to avoid being slapped by the cold hand of judgment was by far one of the hardest experiences I have had to endure. Seeing my old basketball team put away their longer than knee basketball shorts and reluctantly inching in to mini skirts many sizes too small was painful. This wasn’t any of them growing up and maturing. No, I knew them all too well to know that this is everything other than what they wanted to be doing, saying, or wearing. This was fear, the fear of being judged or ridiculed for being exactly who they wanted. This sick fear embodied those I cared most about. After seeing those discombobulated evolutions begin to take place, I turned my back. Not on those who were evolving into something they’re not, but I turned my back to ignore the evolution itself. I refused to take part in it.

It was at the beginning of my freshman year at Lake Travis High School that I decided the four years were too short to waste but too long to ignore. I was on a mission. A mission to find not only who I was as a person and as me, but also I was on the pursuit of happiness to also be okay with whomever the person I discover may be. A first sip of alcohol, the first toke of marijuana, sneaking out to meet up with girls and boys parents don’t want their children seeing, and any other disapproved substances, activities, or people adolescents endeavor being associated with, majority of the time, are compelled by the potential consequences of saying no. Being ‘cool’ seems to be all that matters to most students in high school. Think about it though, what is cool? Who determines who and what cool is? The kids that think they themselves are cool dictate what and who else get to hold that title. The foundation of every decision made by an agile student is the overwhelming concern of being deemed as not cool. Masks are applied each and every morning by girls whose true selves are covered by the average high school girl fashion. They are exactly who they don’t want to be. Just because the desire to be desired.

They crave to be sought after and they will do anything to go through the right of passage for being exactly what any high school boy would drool over. Or any high school girl would envy. I am more than proud to be able to say I completed the mission I set for myself as a freshman. Yes, it took me all four years, but I didn’t expect anything shorter than that. I have taught myself how to be myself by blowing off any sort of judgment that is hurled at me. The walls of lake travis high school wreak of judgment. I know this very well because of how I challenged myself each and every year. Instead of molding myself into being exactly what my friends and other fellow students were. I transformed myself into who I am at this very moment, and nothing less. No words that have been said about me have broken my skin and gotten deep to me. Assumptions roll off of me like millions of raindrops roll off a leaf in a thunderstorm of dismay. The only thing that can dampen my spirits and abuse my self confidence and my inner conscious is myself. I don’t care what others have to say about me. When I look in the mirror I see myself, when other people say they can look into a mirror and see a complete stranger.

Allowing myself to not be oblivious to what’s being said and presumed about me has been exactly what I needed to be okay with who I am. Instead of hearing things about me and changing myself to fit the label of a high school girl to be what I’m not, I dodge the accusations and allow them to better myself. I am one hundred percent me. There is not one fake thing about me. I do not give anyone anything to be able to conclude about me because I have made it out of this maze of adolescence as me. It’s as simple as that. Giving into judgment can either make or break you. In my case, it made me. I am nothing but exactly who I am. And I could not be more proud of that. But for most of the high school population, avoiding judgment by doing what they don’t want to do and wearing what they don’t want to wear to fit in has engulfed them with artificial characteristics.

These are the people that change themselves to please those around them who, in reality, amount to nothing in their lives. A human is an individual. The definition for individual is- a single human being, as being distinguished from a group. So I say, let the haters hate. Think of me what you will. Just know that I am more than meets the eye and I dare anyone who makes an assumption or passes the slightest judgement to get to know me. I am mentally the strongest person I know. My head is fixated just right on my exalted shoulders. High school is cruel, yes. But no pain, no gain. I have undergone more ridicule than I am going to adhere to. The only reasoning I need for not letting the hypothesis’ that are written up bother me is, once a hypothesis is written, it is experimented. If no one will take the next step and find out truth in me, they are not worth my time or worry. With every rumor, I grow as a person. I am my best friend because I know all there is to me. I have the excessive amounts of evil high school estrogen and drama to thank for that.

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