What do you do when you’re not at NEIU?
I really push myself to go out and do things with my friends and family. Be it going out to watch a movie or going ice skating. I like creating memories and having those I’m close to be a part of it. Even though professors assume we have no life outside of school…we do. And I plan on utilizing all of my time outside of school to be living and making the best days out of nothing.
What are you grateful for?
As cliche as it is I would say my friends. My friends are a family that I voluntarily picked out to be special to me. These people are people that I want to include in my life on a personal level and that is a deep bond. Though the common saying is “Blood is thicker than water,” the complete saying is “The blood of the covenant is thicker than the water of the womb.” Which means the people who brave the battle with you are the closest bonds you will have. And I am glad to have them with me in this insane uphill battle that is life.
What could you never give up?
One hundred percent my answer is music. I always have my headphones on and music playing. Whatever the genre. I have over 30 playlists made based on moods, genres, and events in my life. I like discovering new songs and giving other people new music to listen to. I like “prescribing” friends songs. The best feeling is when a friend genuinely likes one of my recommendations.
Please take a moment and define the word “identity.”
Your identity is everything that encompasses you. This is not only limited to your ethnicity, race, and gender but goes deeper. Your identity is your fears, hopes, and dreams. No one can be the same as another. Your identity is what makes you YOU. This is why it is so important to meet someone with an open mind because you never really know someone completely until you give them the chance to open up with you.
Pick one thing you’d like to change and talk about how you would change it.
Everyone is so used to judging one another. Be it a celebrity, a person on the street, or that girl in your class who talks too much. Everyone has a judgmental finger to point. If we did that a bit less, we would be much better off. By simply sitting back and thinking what exactly do you get out of pointing your fingers at others? You hurt no one but yourself. You limit your experiences with new people, or people in general, by limiting your viewpoint. You get absolutely nothing out of sitting there and assuming the worst out of everyone.
What is the best advice you’ve been given?
Never let anyone put you down. As self-deprecating my humor is I do not let anyone put me down in a way that makes me uncomfortable in my own skin. I used to let people do that to me way too often and it definitely takes a toll on you. A friend gave me this advice when she saw that someone was putting me down in a way that made HER uncomfortable. At that point I had become so desensitized to people doing this that when she called it out I was in shock. I never let anyone do that anymore.
Is there a chapter to your story you’d like people to know more about?
Accepting my anxiety was a big moment in my life. It really took a toll on me in my junior year, and I spent a lot of time avoiding friends because of it. Eventually I learned how far I can push myself, but there are definitely times where it cripples me. I think a lot of people really dismiss anxiety as a real issue for people and tend to be very harsh on those with anxiety. I really wish people educated themselves so that they can be more aware of the people around them.