I wanted to fit in so bad, so I kept laughing at jokes that weren’t funny to me. I agreed with things that deep down I knew I wasn’t okay with. I joined in with the gossip because I didn’t want to be perceived as the “saint” who doesn’t like gossip and doesn’t like to talk about other people. I didn’t say my opinions because I knew that they wouldn’t be welcomed or accepted. I made myself smaller so that people will feel more comfortable letting me in.
I joined in conversations and acted interested in them, when in reality, not a part of me was interested in these conversations at all. I was pretending to be someone I was not so I would be just like everyone else around me. I acted dumb so that I wouldn’t be called a nerd or Miss Know-It-All. I wore things I didn’t like so I could go with the trend. I owned things that I didn’t need so I would be up to date. I did things not because I wanted to but because of what people would say. I said yes when I wanted to say no.
I filtered my words before saying them so they would come out as the “right” ones. I killed my spontaneity and excitement so I wouldn’t come off as “too much”. I kept living up to other people’s expectations and opinions of me to the point that I buried my own true desires. I didn’t listen to my inner voice because I was so keen on listening to everyone else but myself.
I lost myself and who I truly am because I didn’t want to be an outsider. I lost myself trying to please everyone. And that was the worst thing I have ever done to myself. I realized that I kept pretending to be someone I am not for so long that I forgot who I really am. I became this fake version of someone that I don’t even know. I lost my authenticity and my own unique character. I have even lost my voice in the pursuit of fitting in.
And after all that, I realized that I was never meant to fit in. Because when you’re supposed to fit in somewhere, it doesn’t take that much effort; you shouldn’t have to force yourself into it. When you are in the right place with the right people, you instantly fit in without even trying to because you belong there. And maybe it took me a lifetime to know that and understand it. And maybe it cost me to lose my own self, but at least now I know. Now I can stop and finally be myself.