Finding Myself by Eliana

I’ve been in many different social groups and extracurriculars, had various interests and styles, and experienced all sorts of feelings and moments in these first sixteen years of my life. I used to be very conscious of how others thought about me and what my reputation was.

I was friends with the “cool” girls for a while since it seemed fun at first, until I realized how toxic this crowd could be. I went through a lot of phases later on, trying to be what I thought others would like me for. I was unhappy in many of the activities I was involved in, with who I was as person, and around many of the people I surrounded myself by.

I’ve made a lot of choices in the past few years that I deemed as cowardly aberrations at first; I stopped playing basketball after seven years, drifted out of my friend group that I’d had since sixth grade, and quit the school musical this spring. All these things that I left were big parts of my life, so I was very unsure if I had done what was right. Looking back now, though, I know those choices weren’t mistakes because I was happier after making them, even if it took a while to feel that way. I didn’t truly belong in that sport or with those people or as a techie, I suppose. Lately, I feel that I’ve been spending my time doing things that were meant for me and connecting with truly wonderful people, like in this internship with the NPS or cross country.

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I think that more and more, I am accepting myself for who I am and doing things that I truly enjoy. I am a major fangirl over countless things. I love collecting pins, stickers and CDs. I have strong political opinions that I will say out loud and act on. I can’t go a day without listening to music. I’m so picky when it comes to books that I’ve read my favorite one five times since I first found it in freshman year. I have thirteen plants in my bedroom and each one has a name. And so on with all my weird quirks…

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This blog post is sort of all over the place… but the main thing that I want those reading it to take in is that we each only have one life, and we should spend it with people and activities that really make us happy. You will find yourself in the places you feel that you belong in, whatever that might mean for you ☺ I have finally found myself, I believe, here with the National Park Service

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Eliana is an IMBY alumn from 2018 and a current intern at Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park – Seattle at a Youth Artist-in-Residence


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