This I Believe – An Assertive Action

Bravery has always been rewarded. When has it not? In its most basic form, it’s seen as someone going out of their normal ways to risk something. But it seems as though, the simplest meaning of bravery has been eroded away through the high-paced connectivity of our world today.

I was nine back then. I had just met this girl. She was on the same bus as me. She was sweet, but she became more like a light switch, angry or calm, on or off. There was no middle ground for me to stand on. It was one or the other. I had the misfortune of not knowing that and learned through the chaos she brought. Angelic energy radiated from her at one moment, while a closer look would bring about her fist being swung towards the unfortunate soul who got too close. 

Simply stepping out of your comfort zone would’ve been deemed as brave. I tried to seek help. But for those I thought would bring me the advice I so desperately sought, brought with them rhetoric that attempted to stray me away from my problems and more towards theirs. 

Another one of her hands flew towards me with rage. Some of her words too. 

It didn’t hurt. It didn’t hurt because these people said my pain is not valid. These people I looked up to, the people I drew inspiration from, to see them act differently than who I thought they were, it slowly opened up a rift within me. That rift, it forced me to open my eyes to see the world as it truly was; a chaotic mess where simple acts of courage were undermined among a swarm of problems these advisors deemed as “more important”.  But what if I deemed this issue as important to me? 

Her relentless rage, it continued to rain down on me. But I couldn’t pretend that it didn’t hurt. It hurt myself even more to shun myself from the raw emotions that I felt so strongly every day. Everything, every little thing, would set me on edge- the emotions were reaching a fever point; I couldn’t hold it back anymore. One more became the last time she would swing her fists at me. This time I didn’t let her do it. 

It felt, it felt different. To have control, it was something beyond my grasp at the time. She was startled. I was shocked. She stood there, the look of shock imprinted on her face. It only lasted a moment as she turned and ran. 

The aftermath, it felt weird. The fear I felt so deeply was fading. The day just felt just a little bit brighter.

Fairy Tales dominated my bookshelves as a young child. Thus, the knight in shining archetype became ingrained within me. With the modern world in tow, all we see are the massive acts of bravery all around the world. Naivety and gullibility were at the forefront of my brain; the bar to what was considered brave kept rising to a height where reactions like mine to the girl were no longer valued. Simple, small actions of bravery go unnoticed and are undervalued. Children are quite impressionable, so with this societal mindset being pushed towards them in all directions, some may never realize the true value of bravery. This brings about a certain viewpoint towards how others are meant to behave in situations similar to mine. 

Reflecting back on this, it doesn’t sound like too much, but as a younger me, a small inconvenience could make or break my day. Turning the tides and assuming an assertive role brought with it a new outlook on what bravery should be.

Once the dust had settled, I came to the realization that regardless of a person’s past, a simple act of bravery can shine a light towards a new perspective on what is considered worthy. This belief etched itself in me. I became more accepting of others when they take the courage to exit their comfort zone. Whether it be something as small as helping for help in a store to life or death decisions, I can not find any reason to put the person down, to tell them to just “get over it, it isn’t that scary”.

No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted. -Aesop

So, why can’t the same be said about bravery? 

As time moved forward, I drew more from this encounter. How my courage simply evolved from anger and frustration with others around me, it brought the acknowledgment that I should not let external influences be the only contributor towards my emotions. Instead, I should let myself be the main or sole carrier of the decisions I make when in regards to bravery. 

Bravery should never be measured. It should’ve never been. The past can’t be altered, but the mindset of others can be. Timidity is the default for some of us, but taking that leap to stand up for your heart, your soul, your beliefs, that takes bravery and should never be qualified or quantified by society, no matter the size of the situation. 

Through thick and thin, this is what I believe.



Featured Image- David August- Lightning


Print Friendly, PDF & Email

5 thoughts on “This I Believe – An Assertive Action

  1. Dearest Kaydence,

    Congrats on your first AP blog! I feel like such a proud mom watching you transition into this year after being your TA in grade 9. I know I’m not that much older, yet I feel like I’m watching you all grow up. This was a lovely piece that showcased your in-depth understanding of yourself and the concept of bravery; I am glad I read this piece and got to learn a bit more about you.

    I enjoyed the emphasis you put on the “small” acts of bravery, which for many can take a great deal of effort; any action that is taken outside of what is considered normal for an individual puts them in position where they become vulnerable. The anecdote you included about this reflected your point well in how the choice to take your life into your own hands can be difficult and for you it meant being brave in a way that was not traditionally accepted as brave — I’m glad you have been able to grow and develop from that into the amazing young lady you are today!

    In order to improve, I would suggest you work on how you transition from one idea to the next because I found myself having to read back to connect dots in my head. What I think would be a good way to develop your flow is using the ideals you accepted from fairy tales as a way to talk about your initial views on bravery vs your new ones. Independently, that paragraph felt awkward as we went from your growth back to the cause of your initial situation. I almost would have preferred a chronological development to the positive change you had rather than the back and forth.

    All in all, it was an excellent piece that showcased your beautiful voice and it kept me engaged. I’m looking forward to your progress and development. Remember you have my support whenever you need it!


  2. Dear Kaydence,

    Your honesty in this piece is what makes me love it so much. We all claim to be brave- that we always stand up for ourselves, but we all know that’s a lie. It takes courage and belief in yourself to even start being brave. I met you this year, and I’m so happy we met. You’re an amazing person; you’re kind, honest, and you often make my day, which is amazing considering my pessimistic nature.

    Bravery is a tricky subject to talk about. In reality it’s a subjective topic, since it means something different to everyone on earth. The anecdote you provided really enhances your interpretation of bravery; you don’t have to be a knight in shining armor, you might just be a kid learning where they stand in the expanse of the world. I felt that your tone matched your personality along with how you wanted to tell your story; mildly melancholy, honest, assertive, and personally I could always here that mildly salty tone you get when you’re irritated. This piece matched who you are as a person, but I learned so much more about you through it than I ever could have otherwise.

    Although I truly loved your piece, I had to reread a few lines as you transitioned to new ideas quite quickly. I think that the main thing you could improve on is the flow of your writing- I also have issues with this, so I completely get how hard it can be. A tip Nimrat gave me that has helped me a lot, even though she only told me two days ago, is to read your work out loud and make adjustments where necessary. Reading things out loud always helps to hear where any choppiness is, as I found out recently.

    Kaydence, you’re an amazing human being who has so much strength and power within- and I’m completely jealous and proud of how talented you are.


  3. Dear Kaydence,

    Your piece was beautifully written and your varied word choices made your piece interesting and unique. The story that you chose amplifies your belief in the small acts of bravery and how important they are to you. You made it clear of how important small acts of bravery can be and gave me insight of who you are as a person, even though I don’t know you very well. From this piece, I can see that you are a very talented writer that is able to keep a reader engaged and write beautiful pieces.

    Your piece was very well written and I truly enjoyed reading it, however, I would suggest having smoother transitions from paragraph to paragraph, just like what Katie and Nimrit said. You jump from idea to idea quickly, making the flow of your piece choppy. I had to re-read your piece a few times to fully understand the story. You also jumped from past to present quite often as well, making it a bit confusing to understand, but re-reading it did help me grasp the point you are trying to make.

    I look forward to reading more of your pieces as it seems that you are a much more gifted writer than I am. I hope to get to know you better by reading your pieces on this blog and in class.

    Sincerely, Yifeng

  4. Dear Kaydence,

    Your piece was very nicely written and kept me engaged throughout. You used a variety of sentence structures and the points you made were very insightful. I could clearly understand the way you viewed bravery and how you interpret it. The way you compared your idea of bravery to what society has ingrained in us to believe added to your points and presented the overriding conflict of the piece, which I thought was very clever. Also, I loved the wide range of vocabulary you used. The way you used it made your piece much more personable and more interesting. Every word you used seemed to be purposeful, which is difficult to achieve, so it’s great that you already have such a solid grasp on this. Your use of rhetorical questions and figurative language was absolutely captivating, especially the sentence, “Her relentless rage, it continued to rain down on me.”

    Like what has been said before, you could work on your transitions to new ideas. It was a bit confusing sometimes when you would move on to new ideas, and I feel like the way you organized the piece interrupted the flow of your writing. I would suggest putting your point about how fairy tales shaped your previous idea of bravery near the beginning, before your main story, so that it’s easier to understand. This would also make your writing less choppy.

    All in all, I absolutely loved your piece! It gave me a lot of insight into you as a person and you seem to have a well-established writing style already, which is great to see. I look forward to reading more of your work on this blog because this first post was so greatly written!

  5. Dear Nimrat, Katie, Yifeng, and Riya,
    Firstly, thank you to all of you for taking time to read through my blog and providing thoughtful and valuable feedback.

    Nimrat, your feedback is the one I truly valued the most. Since you’ve been through this class already, you had the knowledge to provide me with the most relevant tips for how to improve this piece and I am grateful for that. I appreciate that you are always willing to provide support for me in terms of my writing. The points you made about me having to work on making sure my writing flows in a more chronological order was helpful. Also, the tip about the fact that I need to work on maintaining a consistent flow between events and paragraphs was good for me.

    Katie, your comment made my heart simply melt, so thank you. Your tip on reading a piece of writing out loud is quite helpful for since I have the tendency to forget to read my pieces with an actual voice and that has led to me making careless mistakes. Your comment highlighted things I need to improve upon while also making me feel absolutely amazing.

    Yifeng, your comment also highlighted key areas I need to work. Having you point out that I have an issue with keeping a consistent flow and just like Nimrat, keeping my events in a more organized manner is something I’ll be sure to follow in my upcoming pieces. On top of that, you mentioning how my habit of jumping between ideas quite suddenly is a situation I will be addressing when I later edit this piece.

    Riya, thank you for bringing up on how I need to draw more details from causes that lead up to an effect. Also, having you and everyone else mentioning how I need to edit my flow really helped to drive that point into my head. Also, it was great of you to being up the choppiness seen in my piece as although I may understand it, my readers may not. That was a great reminder for me.

    Overall, to all of you, I greatly enjoyed reading through your well thought out comments and reading through all of the important tips for ensuring that I can make this piece as best as I possibly can.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *