I was thinking about what I might have said to that if I were 15 again. I probably would have said something like “if you can’t beat ’em, you can’t beat ’em”. Actually I said a lot of things when I was 13, 14, 15, even 16. Things that I don’t necessarily agree with or should have said differently. So I was thinking about that today, and all the things I was involved in – Regenerate Our Culture, TeenPact, NCFCA, Homeschooling, The Rebelution – and I realized that I’m not the embodiment of those causes anymore. It’s not that I didn’t believe it all at the time, or that I was pretending, but that years later I’ve grown and now I find myself in a different mindset and way of thinking.
I’m realizing a lot of things I believed because I did, because someone said it was so, because I was taught. Now I’m becoming an individual, my own person – and questioning, learning, and finding out what I believe for myself, not because someone said to. I’ve realized that where I stand now doesn’t line up with where I stood when I was 15, and that’s not a bad thing! I’m not off the deep end or abandoning all values, but I am re-evaluating and coming to my own conclusions.
These conclusions are different than they would have been if I were 15, but I’m not 15, I’m in a whole different part of life, I understand more and have a little bit more perspective (I hope). I also reserve the right, 4 years from now, to come back and recant and apologize for things I was wrong about. I want to grow continually and learn, not be stuck somewhere so hard I never budge even if I’m wrong or if “my party left me”. My identity is not the embodiment of a cause, number of causes, or a political movement.