I had a series going on previously on my other (private) Tumblr blog, of multiple times in my life where my self esteem was shot and how it affected me in the long run. This was my third post and probably one of the most vulnerable and "F*#! yeah I'm awesome" kind of moments that I'm really proud of and I wanted to share this with everybody on my public blog. Enjoy!
After my junior year, I attended the Barnard Pre-College Program. I was in love with the school and I was kind of in love with some of the courses that I chose to take. That was the first time I was introduced to the idea of introducing myself to random strangers without having to be judged. I risked my awkwardness to higher levels by sitting down with random students and asking them what classes they were taking. They were all students at Barnard PCP so it couldn’t hurt right?
I decided to take this “stranger talking” skill that I gained from pre-college with me to college. I was so excited for orientation and so pumped. The first day went really well and I got to know so many people. The second day, however, I wanted to sit down with people I hadn’t met yet. I’ve been doing this stranger meet-and-greet for the past two years; it’s not going to fail this time right?
I went up to a girl who was in my orientation group whom I hadn’t met yet, stood right in front of her and introduced myself. She looked at me, turned around and talked to her other friends. I don’t know if it’s because she wasn’t used to seeing Asians who spoke fluent English since she’s from some hickville small town with 40 graduating seniors in her class. I don’t know if it’s because she actually didn’t hear me. But I got really offended and closed myself off for the rest of the day. I still see her on campus, and I highly HIGHLY doubt she actually remembers me, but I still hold a grudge against her because of that one incident.
And on the first day of college, I stopped introducing myself to random strangers in the elevators. I also became more aware of my race, and decided that I wanted to defy the Asian stereotype completely. I didn’t want to be identified with other Asians at Northeastern. I didn’t want to be automatically categorized as some girl who didn’t know how to speak English or was introverted and quiet. I just wanted to create my own identity and be the complete opposite. The greatest thing was that I didn’t have to change anything about myself. I just had to be more confident with who I was, and that’s all it took.