All Nonfiction Bullying Books Academic Author Interviews Celebrity interviews College Articles College Essays Educator of the Year Heroes Interviews Memoir Personal Experience Sports Travel & CultureAll Opinions Bullying Current Events / Politics Discrimination Drugs / Alcohol / Smoking Entertainment / Celebrities Environment Love / Relationships Movies / Music / TV Pop Culture / Trends School / College Social Issues / Civics Spirituality / Religion Sports / Hobbies
- Summer Guide
- College Guide
- Author Interviews
- Celebrity interviews
- College Articles
- College Essays
- Educator of the Year
- Personal Experience
- Travel & Culture
- Current Events / Politics
- Drugs / Alcohol / Smoking
- Entertainment / Celebrities
- Love / Relationships
- Movies / Music / TV
- Pop Culture / Trends
- School / College
- Social Issues / Civics
- Spirituality / Religion
- Sports / Hobbies
- Community Service
- Letters to the Editor
- Pride & Prejudice
- What Matters
I used to think that to be strong, you had to be tough.
I used to think that to be independent, you had to be alone.
I used to think that to be heard, you had to be loud.
And that to forgive, you had to forget.
I used to think that to love, to really love, you had to forget about your own life and focus solely on another person.
Its funny how deceiving our perceptions can be. Our world is full of distorted images. And sounds. And messages.
The media tells girls that they have to be skinny to be beautiful. That they have to be beautiful to be loved. That they have to be loved to matter.
You know what I say? Forget that. Forget everybody else and what everybody else thinks and feels and says. What matters is how YOU feel. Do you love yourself? The answer should be yes. Because every human being - black or white, man or woman or trans, gay or straight or bisexual or lesbian or whatever, young, old, dumb, deaf, blind - they all deserve love. So love yourself. You are beautiful.
Being strong means its okay to cry sometimes. Its okay to hurt. Being strong means knowing that the rain brings rainbows.
Being independent doesn't mean pushing everybody out of your life. Being independent is when you don't need somebody, but you want them anyway.
You don't need to be loud to be heard. You just need someone to listen. And sometimes its good to just stop and listen. You never know what you might hear that's been shouting at you all along.
Forgiveness is about kindness. We all could use some more kindness in this world. Don't forget though. Forgetting our mistakes dooms us to repeat them.
And to love someone else, you must first love yourself. Because how can you ever expect anyone to love you when you don't even love yourself? Give love away, but don't lose yourself. Your identity is the only thing in life that is really yours.
So own it. Live it. Be you. And love you. Because dammit, you deserve it.