It is difficult to love a place that has so easily told you that you don’t belong; that you don’t look the right way; that you don’t think the right way; that you don’t fit in. It is difficult to give people a second chance when they weren’t even prepared to give you one. The most heart breaking thing a teenage girl can endure is to be constantly told that she doesn’t belong to the only place she has ever known as home. It shapes your future experiences, it makes you quick to judge people, it makes you paranoid and weary of those who only have the best intentions for you. 

I challenge myself to rise above, to be better, to think larger, to forgive the small minded. Better yet, I challenge you to rise above, to be better, to think larger and to never close your mind to the possibility that the world is so much larger than you can imagine. You can choose the kind of person you want to be; you can shape the experiences of the people around you. Choose compassion, so others may remember you for your kindness and empathy. Choose friendship, so others may remember your loyalty. Above all else, choose justice and fairness, so when the times comes, you will be at peace with yourself.

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