"Life is either a daring adventure or nothing..." -Helen Keller
So really, I'm not really a big fan of this page of my blog. I think it's a good idea, and I'd love to write more about my heart, I'm just not so sure about publishing it out for the world to see.

But I'd like to try a little. Lately, (and by lately I mean pretty much my whole life, though lately it's been particularly driving me crazy), I've had a ridiculous preoccupation with what others think of me. Here, in this place, especially, I am so often anxious of what others think of me. I'm living in a place where the subtler qualities of one's personality (subtle humor, occasional sarcasm, a quiet raise of the eyebrows to jest at something ridiculous going down, a quiet word, clearly and quietly understanding the local language) are not often noticed. I'm also living alongside of my best friend, someone with a not-so-subtle personality in many ways. He's my partner and my soul mate in every way; he's perfect for me. However, as he cracks jokes, unreservedly enters into conversations in a foreign language, and is often applauded as the life of the party in this culture, it's caused me to reflect a whole lot more on what it means for me to be secure, what it means for me to truly not care what others think, pretty much for my self worth not to hang on whether someone else thinks I'm cool.

I ran across this quote today... There are so many intertwined wires in my brain that I don't know whether reading the quote in the context of what I'm writing will make sense to others, but it's my heart on my sleeve, and it makes sense to me:

"Great tranquility of heart is his who cares for neither praise nor blame."

I want this tranquility of heart, to be the girl who cares for neither praise nor blame. I don't want my self-worth, my security, to hang on whether another person likes me, whether they think I'm great because I'm a foreigner or they think I'm unintelligent because I can't think on my feet to utter words in a foreign language, whether they think I'm pretty because my eyes or blue or they think that my fashion is crazy because I don't care if my clothes are dirty or my hair is out of place, whether they think I'm the best teacher in the world because I'm creative or they think I'm awful because I'll gladly abandon a lesson plan to re-direct toward student needs and issues at hand, whether they think I'm fun or they think I'm clueless as I sit thinking hilarious thoughts that I just can't quite express across the language barrier.

I want to love. I want to be free. I want to run, unashamedly, unhindered by what others think. I just want to be me. I want to forget who others want to me to be, for my ears to be deafened to the roaring applause and the mocking laughter for long enough to consider only what I was made for, who I am.

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