I have always been good at avoiding people who make me feel bad about myself. I have always chosen to surround myself with people who love and care about me and truly like me for me, not because I wear name-brand clothes or look like some movie star. But sometimes you can't help surrounding yourself with those people. Like when I made my junior high cheerleading squad, I was the only person on the squad who didn't "hang" with the other girls. I was the outsider.
I decided I'd stick it out. I told myself to just be nice, smile, and not do anything that I'd regret. It was impossible. There were so many mean looks when I couldn't stick a stunt or a flip. They were subtle, but to the point. It was a way to exclude me. It was all in the open. They didn't want me there. I wasn't one of them. I was at the point where I'd cry for long periods of time. These people had no idea what it was like to be me. I just wanted a friend. I wanted to belong.
Finally I made up my mind: So what about what they think? They can think whatever they want. Be yourself. Don't worry about what they say or the looks that they give you. Remember to do your best and keep on working. I still may not hang out with them, but to tell you the truth, I don't notice the dirty looks anymore (if there are any), and I don't realize that they are excluding me. Why? Because I started BELIEVING in myself. Because I realized that I am the best that I can be. Because I said to myself, "I believe in me, and as long as I do that, I can do ANYTHING!"