The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
We are not but human beings. We have minds, hearts, and souls. We think and feel and ache and yearn. We are born, we live, and we die.
And through it all, we are only one person.
When I was young, I used to dream of what it would be like to become someone else, live in another body, another country, another time. If just for one day, I could know what it felt like to be someone other than myself, what would I do? Of course, I first imagined being a princess and living in a magnificent castle with a perfect fairytale life. I would sing with animals and walk through magical forests and maybe even find a handsome prince. I thought to myself, what could be better? What could be better than not being me?
My last apology is to that wishful little girl: I’m so sorry that you didn’t want to be yourself and I promise that I am trying to do better for you.
Our mothers and grandmothers before us fought so, so hard. They broke the silence that was forced upon them by the society that was afraid of their strength. They stood up, spoke up, and advocated for us, their daughters, to have a better life than they were granted. Now, why would you go and apologize for it?
You say “sorry for speaking too loudly.” You say “sorry for the misunderstanding.” You say “sorry for not being what you all expected me to be.”
To you, I say thank you. I say thank you for speaking up so that we can all hear what lovely things you have to say. I say thank you for clarifying and helping us to understand. I say thank you for being exactly who you are and not conforming to each and every vision of who you might be. Because really, I wouldn’t want you to pretend to be someone who doesn’t make you happy. Above all else, you deserve to be happy.
I know that not every day will be a good day. There will be a voice in your head, a voice you have come to know all too well, convincing you to hide again. It will tell you that you can’t, that you shouldn’t, that you could never. And I challenge you to fight it.
You are not an inconvenience and nobody expects you to act like you are. We are born to take up space and live loudly and love proudly without hesitation. It is a dishonor to yourself to act less than you are, to shrink yourself away until you are only a fraction of what you could be. One of the worst things in life is to witness someone not understand or reach their full potential. You and I, we may struggle to see it, but we are so very capable of greatness. It will take work to get there, a journey and a climb and a discovery of strength, but we will make it. We will become who we are meant to be and we will not apologize. Princess or not, we will get our happily ever after.