A World, A Girl

To some, I look Mexican. To others, I look Caucasian. To some, I seem shy. To others, I seem outgoing. Assumptions, one of the worst things in this world; I truly believe that because everyone does it and no one knows each other’s lives, we don’t know someone’s story. Where they came from, who their parents are, who they are. Sometimes we make assumptions because we could be too scared to ask that person or maybe we like to pre-judge people before we realize we’re wrong about them. Today, I’ll be talking about myself and the assumptions about myself that other people make, the good, the bad, the neutral, all of it. Here we go.

Other people assume I’m someone that is always sad. They’re half right. I was diagnosed with depression back in high school during my sophomore year. Ever since then I’ve taken countless of different type of medications in order to feel happy. The medication works in the beginning, but sooner or later it stops working and the dark thoughts come back to taunt me. Nowadays, I’m happier than I used to be back then. I still take medications, but they actually work this time around. I think I’ve found the right medication for me. My depression isn’t completely gone though. There are still days where I sit on the floor of my bathroom in my apartment complex crying my eyes out wishing for all the pain and suffering, I feel to go away. The dark thoughts still come back and affect me greatly. All the negative thoughts and feelings still lurk in the back of my mind; itching and wanting to come out to ruin my mood. However, I don’t let it. I don’t let my depression control me. I’ve learned to cope in healthy ways to stop the depression from seeping over me.

Some people assume that I am someone who is straight. They’re wrong, I’m rainbow-colored! I started realizing that I am bisexual in high school my sophomore year. I was dating a guy at the time, but there was this girl that I always paid more attention to than him. She was pretty, smart, popular, and at first, I thought I wanted to be like her, but I slowly realized I might just have feelings for her. It was a complicated feeling I felt. I didn’t know what to label myself anymore. I didn’t even know the word bisexual existed back in high school. All I knew was that the feeling wasn’t considered normal and I was confused. I ignored the feelings throughout high school and thought it would go away. That is, until I reached college. I was dorming with all girls my freshman year and there was this fiery red headed girl. Similar to the popular girl at my high school, she was pretty, funny, and we had so many things in common. My feelings reemerged and I realized that I couldn’t ignore it anymore.

I had feelings for another girl. My roommate.

I never told her. I did, however, end up going to the pride center and learned that I am bisexual. I am proud of who I am now. I don’t hide my feelings anymore and I don’t let anyone stop me from feeling what I feel for someone. People assume I’m straight because I’ve only dated guys. Little did they know I was going through a battle within myself to figure out who I am and my true feelings.

            People look at me and assume I am one race. To correct them, I am actually four. I am African American, Caucasian, Filipino, and Mexican. My mother is Caucasian and Filipino while my biological father is Mexican and African American. My mother is still in my life. She often taught me traditions along with my Nana and grandma on Filipino culture. Learning to say pakiusap (please) and salamat po (thank you sir/ma’am) in Tagalog with anyone in general. Having to sing maligayang bati (happy birthday to you) on everyone’s birthday; being slightly embarrassed because I am very shy when it comes to singing, but nevertheless enjoying it anyway. Lastly, being able to tell my Nana and grandma mahal kita (I love you) and hearing them say it back to me with just as much love in their tone of voice. My biological father was never in my life, so I don’t know many Mexican or African American traditions. I’m not as familiar with them as I am with Filipino culture or traditions. However, I would like to have some, one day. I am mixed. I am four different races and I’m proud of that. It keeps me in touch with those close around me; because of those races I am able to explore different traditions and different languages. It really showed me that I am a part of this world, whether that’s a good thing or not, well I haven’t gotten there yet.

“You look shy.”

“You don’t talk much.”

The definition of shy is: Being reserved or having or showing nervousness or timidity in the company of other people. People assume this about me, but they are sadly mistaken. The definition of reserved is: slow to reveal emotion or opinions. I rather call myself that. If you had asked me when I was a little what I’d label myself as, I would have said shy. The reason for that is because I used to hide behind my father’s legs and pop my head out to look at whoever he was talking to. However, after listening for some time, I felt more comfortable to step out and be a part of the conversation. Still not speaking as much, but it was slow progress. I never participated in class when the teacher asked for volunteers. I thought I was too shy to participate. However, looking back on it, I wasn’t. I was just reserved and wanting to see if anyone else would go first because once someone went first, I felt more comfortable to speak. People assume that I am shy people of my reluctance to speak to people and my habit of avoiding being the center of attention. I never liked the attention as a child if it wasn’t from a family member or anything school related. As I grew up, I realized that I still don’t like the attention, but I am more accustomed to it now because of family events and school presentations. For family events I had to be in front of everyone as a bridesmaid while everyone stared. It was nerve wracking, but I managed to get through it. For school it had always been presentations that I dreaded doing but had to do in order to receive a grade. I consider myself reserved because I am not someone who participates until I absolutely have to. So, when someone calls me shy, I feel more inclined to not partake even more because the assumption made me feel irritated, but I try not to let it get to me too much.

Something I get told a lot, mainly by my family is that I am lazy. I’ve heard it for years ever since I was a child, it made me grow to dislike the word eventually. The reason I’ve been told I am lazy is for multiple reasons. I would stay in bed for hours as a time unless I had to use the bathroom or get hungry, I wouldn’t be motivated to do my homework, and I wouldn’t be motivated to do my chores too. Even after I was diagnosed with depression, after I was given reasons for staying in bed as a symptom my parents still proceeded to call me lazy. It hurt. The thing is, I am not intentionally lazy. I procrastinate, but not out of laziness. I simply do not like stress. Once I am stressed, I overthink, get anxiety, and become impatient and bossy. It has happened on multiple occasions. One occasion that I remember vividly is during a project I got very upset at my groupmates for not choosing the correct colored pencil for the item we were supposed to be coloring in. I didn’t yell at him per say, but I did lecture him on why it had to be perfect because I really wanted that good grade. I became so stressed that I needed to take a time out to regain my thought process and ended up apologizing to my groupmate. That was just one example of many where once I am stressed, I turn impatient and bossy. So, it isn’t because I am lazy, I just don’t like stress. Too many things stress me out and give me anxiety easily. I try to avoid it as much as possible.

People assume I am selfish. I’ll own up to it and say that at times I can be. But I am mainly the most selfless person you will ever meet in your lifetime. Here are the reasons why: Right when I make a friend, I tell them that if they need anything, I will drop what I am doing for them. Doesn’t matter if I’m doing homework, sleeping, or even talking to someone else I will drop what I am doing to make sure they are okay. An example was when my best friend called me at three in the morning and told me he felt like his stomach was going to explode, I got up, got dressed, and rushed over to his room to check if he was okay. Turns out his appendix burst and if I hadn’t woken up in time to take care of him, it could’ve been really bad. I had to rush him to the hospital and stayed with him for a total of six plus hours despite having classes all day until he came out of surgery. Another example is when my roommate rushed out of the dormitories upset and I chased after her with no shoes on down two blocks until she stopped and I sat with her as she cried out the reason why she left then eventually brought her back to the dormitories so she could sleep. Those are just two of many examples of how I feel as though I am selfless. I’m aware that people who are selfless aren’t supposed to say they are, but I feel the need to defend myself against the assumption that I am selfish. At the end of the day I know the truth and that’s what matters most.

To some, I look sleepy. To others, I look energetic. To some, I seem smart. To others, I seem stupid. Assumptions, one of the worst things in this world; I still believe that even after writing this paper because everyone including me does it and no one knows each other’s lives, we don’t know someone’s story. Now you know who I am, who my parents are, and an insight into my daily life. At the end of the day I’m in a world where assumptions are made and I am just a girl trying to find someone that sees the real me, not who they assume I am.