Imagine your life propelled into a constant state of reconstruction. All attempts to form a sense of identity are ultimately ruled out or minimally sustained based upon your life encounter. I have three identities, but can never identify with one. The feeling of being that fake friend who treats everyone differently lurks with me. Growing up, the ability to fit in with my peers posed many challenges because I was perceived as a social butterfly. I jumped from group to group, never having a core set of friends to stick with.
At school I was regarded as your friendly nomad that just wanted something different everyday. The majority of people who knew me had a general understanding of who I was, but to no greater extent. It was not uncommon for others to react surprised when they discovered the collection of people I associated with. That is how they saw the different clusters of my personalities when I was not with them. Through these observations, three primary identities that reflected upon me were observed, each represented by three different places I grew up in: Hercules, Patterson, and South San Francisco.
When I lived in Hercules, the area was a very peaceful woodsy community with lots of animals and moderate sized omes that have big front and backyards. The community make up was predominantly middle class of a black, white, or asian background. People there were old fashion in how they were brought up in life at the same time kind of ghetto. The ghetto people we had were old school gangsters already past their youth, they were blunt and very straightforward. I was also brought up with these really old fashioned manners. Simple manners of just “please” and “thank you” were part of my everyday life.
Cursing and racism was never shown or talked about. In the household I was being raised to be a respectable a oung man so I would be proper in public, but oh boy I became that respectable young man alright. Not, when I was not in the watch of the family or siblings I was a troublemaker. Things I did usually involved name calling, breaking objects in the house, and sometimes get in fights. An example is playing catch in the house with my older brother and breaking our grandma’s mini angel statues. Name calling and fights in school resulted me in the principal’s office.
To be honest, I just think the teacher found me and some other students annoying because we were like broken records. All we did was knit pick at each other to get someone in trouble. I felt the teacher was the type who would probably hit a student with a ruler if she could. In the end this was the development of my first identity, the kid that was very respectable yet simultaneously desired to invoke havoc. After our time spent in Hercules, we found our next home in what was at the time the rural town of Patterson. The area we moved to is next to the agricultural area with farms not to far off.
Essentially Patterson is just a hot wasteland every single day. This community is newly built so a lot of big new homes were eing sold, at the time it was still a small area. Everyday needs were in a plaza towards the entrance of the town. There was only two high schools, one private school, and a ton of elementary schools. The school I went to was the private school named Sacred Heart. My schoolmates there were blacks, whites, and latinos. Going to Sacred Heart helped me develope a lot of morals and rules that I still believe in to this day. We were taught to not cause trouble and to reject selfish behavior.
A rule that I noticed on the wall was “God First, Family Second, Friends Third, Yourself Last”. I strongly believed in this, as it made me become a kinder person, who realized if others were happy, then I was happy. Fortunately Patterson at the time had a lot people of who are hardworking, outgoing, and friendly. Our town was a place where technology did not dominate the youth, it was a place of going outside a lot with no worries. When it would be just me and my brother at home he would either set up a fun neighborhood activity, invited friends to hangout at our house, or we chilled with his friends.
My brother and our peers taught me a lot about just living life. Hanging out late at night, isk taking, and doing stupid things that people should not be doing is worth it in life. Which is very true because whenever I think back about it, I start smiling and laughing about the stupid fun things I have done. I get very nostalgic though, I get kind of sad and wish I still knew my friends back in Patterson. In the end, I am grateful for this rule in our house during the time we lived there, “Have fun. Do whatever you want as long as you have good grades and the cops aren’t involved”.
This is the formation of my second identity, a young boy that was kind, happy, and wanted to have fun stupid adventures that have otential trouble. Last is my current home of South San Francisco. A not so spacious area, everywhere looking cramped, cloudy skies, cold, and not much of a welcoming feeling I would say. Going from big homes with a lot of open space, to the city of opposite. It really sucked, I became really depressed and mad. I just could not comprehend how we went from a really good life and now end up going backwards but a more worst situation. The school life was a major difference including transitioning into city life.
All over the school I would just hear cursing everywhere like bullets. My peers could be really happy and somewhere along the line they would start fighting each other. A lot of these bad habits that this community has is “cancer” as my coach would put it. City life was different to me, because I did not know anyone. Everyone felt like strangers to each other. No one communicates unless they know them from a particular activity. People in public are sucked into their technology. Trying to make friends with random people in public or even interact is not common. I became a victim to these “cancers”.
My last identity now became this depressed teen sucked into bad habits nd became quiet. I cannot figure out who I am. Each identity wants a spot in the limelight, but each one is afraid by the other identity’s influencer. The identities pop in and out when they get familiar with a surrounding they are used to, but then another one wants to pop in and ruin it. I can not understand how my identity had a good foundation, and then all of a sudden crumbled into a torn down building, which leads to identity impossible. Who am l? Who do you think I am? Which identity do you see from me when I am with you alone or with a group of people?