Issue of August 4, 2019
     
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How wrong people can make you a stranger to yourself

Being surrounded with people having the same sparkle in your eyes as everyone shares the same dream and beautiful vision for the future is probably the most memorable thing I felt during the first days in college. Little did I know that it was just the exciting prologue of the new chapter I’m making. It is not all fun and excitement alone, this life stage is a novel filled with surprises that somehow made me lose myself along the way as if I am a stranger.

My first weeks made me feel a little lost. The first obstacle in college is probably having the right company. I considered it as if it’s my first time playing the first stage in Super Mario; it will never be instantly perfect; you’re supposed to make a mistake like a normal person. At first, I did things on my own, but as time went by, I started being with my classmates who happened to be seated next to me. It took me time to realize that hanging around with strangers for the sake of not being alone is not that simple.

I tried my best to have a close bond with the first friends I had. I thought being open and making people feel comfortable with my presence is enough, like what I always do with my best friends. But I was wrong. I felt naive for thinking that anyone can be close as long as you open your heart to them. I was able to open up my heart and real self but some people whom I thought will do the same, just looked at my open door and skipped it.

I felt taken for granted and made fun of by the first company I have been with, but I always end up brushing the uncomfortable feeling off by laughing with them, as if everything was okay and their words never hurt. I kept on denying, thinking that they are not doing anything wrong, that maybe I am being too sensitive and making fun or mocking each other is part of the real friendship.

The bad side is, hanging around with them made me feel bad about myself. I started losing self-confidence for thinking that I’m an extremely boring person, since all I want is to study, rest, be with my family on rest days, or binge-watch interesting series and not being the typical outgoing person that they wish to be with. It’s like I am being alienated, so I felt the need to change into someone “interesting” based on their standards; I felt so lost. Why am I confused with who I am and what I should be?

The good thing is, I failed on my plan to change, because no matter how much I wish to be someone I’m not, I kept on coming back to my typical self.

I learned that there are people who won’t click with you no matter how much you try, and it’s fine. That’s what happens in reality, you cannot please everyone.

I guess the only mistake that I badly regret is trying to fit in just so I can feel that I’m in the same page with them. I tried doing things that I’m uncomfortable with, I’m bothered on my own and I thought it’s fine as long as we are having fun together, as long as I can see them laughing with me.

The time came where I finally accepted to myself that I am not genuinely happy at the end of a day full of laughter with them. Having fun is different from being happy. What happened was like being in a concert where all of you were singing, enjoying, and smiling at each other as you sing to the melody, but in reality, you don’t harmonize with them at all. Being with wrong people made me lonely at night as I think about what exactly is happening to me.

“What’s wrong with me? Why do I feel so lost and alone even when I’m surrounded with people?”

Despite having a mistake that I regret, the best decision I made is letting go of people who are not healthy for my peace of mind, in a respectful manner. I considered them as “wrong people” not because they’re the worst, but because they are not fit for me, like a shoe not in my size. Holding grudges will not make any sense, I believe it is best to sleep with peace in your heart.

Being connected with friends is a process, and being around with people whom you feel connected with is also allowing yourself to be free from negativity and unhealthy thoughts. So, do yourself a favor and make sure you are with people who are making you feel truly loved and accepted. You deserve a good night sleep.

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