From a young age, I learned to live among with people with all kind of different ethnic backgrounds. I went to a Catholic primary school, even though I’m 100% atheist, where we each year danced and sang at our annual Christmas musical. We shared laughter, wishes, and memories. We not only celebrated Christmas but all those other Christian holidays, where we painted eggs in bright colors during Easter and had the fun of our lives, looking for those same exact eggs as our teachers had hidden it for us to find them. I felt home most of the time because there were merely moments which I have been reminded that I looked different from most of the other kids. My hair is not blonde or brown, just like most of the kids. My eyes are not crystal blue or sparkly green, either. I was lucky though because I know how mean kids can be towards each other.
As I grew up, that feeling of being reminded where my ancestors came from, became stronger and stronger, which was largely of bad luck that I ended up in the least desired high school. It wasn’t even in my top 3 list of high schools I wanted to attend to. But, bad luck, huh? Once that bastard has you in his grip, he won’t let you go that easily. Insulting remarks were throwing at me at a frequently base. Time passes by, and I became more and more aware how different I actually look like compared to the majority of my class. And my country, which I call my home.
The space in which I felt free when I was a little girl, feels actually more narrow now.
I didn’t voluntarily put myself in a box and let others stereotype me whatever they think I’m supposed to act like, simply because of the way I look. I didn’t ask for it to act ”butthurt” in someone’s eyes, just because I can’t appreciate the kind of humor where people make fun of others ethnicity. It’s a natural reaction to a provoking action. We can put each other in boxes when we are not used to one another looks, therefore – broadly culture and religion someone’s believes in.
The truth is – you and I, we are not that different, to begin with.
We all belong to one species. We all have the ability to adapt, create, learn and grow. And most importantly, to love. That is our universal language. We all have beliefs, hopes, and dreams. We only get more alien from each other once we put our guard up for no reason most of the time. We all have an angel and a devil on our shoulder. You know when it’s getting really messy? When people pretend to be deaf in one ear, which coincidentally happens to be the side where the angel stands.
But the truth is – you and I, we are not that different – even until now.
It’s a small world after all.