Prompt: What is your opinion of the idea that our beliefs are influenced by the actions of others?
It feels like I have concrete in my veins. My legs are heavy and my arms do not want to move. I ache. I have limped for over an hour to my house from school. My mother and my father have been the only thing I really had in life. My parents love is unchanged, unconditional and cannot be measured. My father works tirelessly on a farm so we are provided with fruits and vegetables, but we have to properly ration our food because we never know where the next meal is going to come from. My mother stays at home usually cooking and cleaning.
Our home is nothing but a couple of bricks and some rusty sheet metal combined together to protect us from the harsh realities of the weather, but my parents always told me it’s not where you come from but what you will do with your life. To be one of the last families to move into the neighbourhood is often shameful as it means you have to lowest ranking among the fellow “friends”. I often have to walk home, past all of the kids in my neighbourhood and I hate the feeling, it makes me sick to my stomach, almost wanting to puke. Every morning I walk past them with my head held high, and I feel victorious because I feel like I’m leaving this neighbourhood to achieve great things for me and for my family.
I love to dance, it is what keeps me going and it’s the sanity in my otherwise crazy life. It’s my escape from everything in reality and I can focus on something that is out of this world. I love to travel in massive steps so when there are big steps involved I feel like I can fly. It’s about improving myself, and not worrying about anyone else. Dancing is my freedom.
I will never feel like a real ballerina and it constantly bothers me because I do not have designer outfits, and my hair is short. I cannot style it in a bun. My neighbours tell me I will never succeed in life. I believe in myself and so do my parents so that’s quite okay. I later tried out for my school’s talent show since I thought it would have been amazing to show off my ballet skills. I was wrong, I was laughed at, mocked and teased about my performance.
Since that frightful day, I have been made fun of by the kids at my school and most of the people in my neighbourhood. Everyone in the neighbourhood threw rocks, and garbage at me because of my performance. After that I had sworn to myself I would never dance again. Every morning and every afternoon I would walk in humiliation, not saying a word to anyone. I didn’t have a single friend but I kept dancing, until one afternoon someone approached me with my parents and told me if I didn’t stop dancing, we would have to leave the village forever. My parents couldn’t move, as we wouldn’t have anywhere to live. I made a decision to stop dancing completely, and I allowed brainless people to interfere with what I believed in. Now I can’t bear to even look at my hand-made ballet suite without tearing up. I will always regret letting mindless individuals influence what I can and cannot do. I am hopeful that one day I will leave this neighbourhood and dance again because I believe I can do it.
Your amazing friend.