My biggest fear is not belonging anywhere. I used to think it was loneliness but I’ve been through that so many times, I no longer fear it. However, despite not belonging in places many times before, the fear just grew stronger. The fear is mostly fueled by insecurity but if I look back at it now, I have never felt like I really belonged anywhere 100% apart from the comforting walls of my house.
Growing up, I never belonged in the city I lived in. I’m Chinese so I looked like a belonged the city but I’m not fluent in Cantonese (my vocabulary is limited to an extent), I couldn’t read or write Chinese. I grew up completely westernized. I didn’t watch those Chinese cartoon programs that were on the cable network, my parents paid so I could watch Disney Chanel and Nickelodeon instead. I listened to western music and my first language was English. I was not like the average Hong Kong student. The reason why so many people in Hong Kong are successful or smart is because the amount of pressure this city puts on students. My parents didn’t want me to have that so they made me attend an international school. Local (public) school students would spend every hour of every day studying while I flunked my IGCSEs. So I thought when I went to the UK I would feel like I belonged there. This was not the case.
I grew up in a different culture. It wasn’t apart of the Hong Kong Culture or the Western culture but a weird little hybrid of both. In my old school we had harsher humor so when I went to the UK, I remember many times I would say things that people at my old school would laugh at while my friends in the UK would find that going ‘too far’. It’s one of my favorite things to do; make people laugh. I do it because of that bit of satisfaction from bringing a person so my joy that I evoked a laugh from them means a lot to me. Knowing I can make people happy despite not being very happy myself (bear in mind this habit popped up when I was depressed, now I do things to make people laugh just simply because I like making people happy). The minute I realized they had a different sense of humor, I changed mine. I did that a lot when I went to the UK. I changed myself. Sometimes I would forget my beliefs and morals that I held so firmly in my life just so I could fit in. The way I dressed, the way I acted. I changed. No matter how much I tried to change myself, I never felt like I fitted in. I would always think “these people knew each other for years, I’m just an outsider”. There are so many times I would be with a group of a people and I wouldn’t speak much. I would find the comforts of my own thoughts and just go into that little space in my mind.
Changing myself showed me how insecure I really am. How I didn’t trust myself enough to stay true to who I am so instead I changed myself to accommodate to people. This realization hurts. When I go home I immediately revert back to the true me. Don’t get me wrong, some of these changes were good changes because I became a nicer person but I am mostly dwelling on the bad things that I changed to from the good. Because of this realization, I am sorry to myself. I am so sorry that I don’t have enough confidence to stay true to who I am. I say this now but the minute I go back to school I’ll probably go back to that me. I feel like I’m traveling to different dimensions where my body stays the same but my consciousness differs.
I think thats my next goal; to stop being scared and to stop changing. I need to start having faith in who I am and trust that people will not mind if I am different. I want people to like the real me and respect my opinions but first I need to like me.
Don’t worry, I am happy in the UK but there are some things that I wanted to be lifted off my shoulders.
I started this blog post not really knowing what I was going to say but through writing this, I realized many things and I discovered more about myself.
Here’s to learning how to love yourself