I know we make jokes about this question, it’s a tricky one. “I’m not asking what your name is, I’m asking WHO are you? I’m not asking what you do, I’m asking who are you? I’m not asking what you like, but who are you?”
And I’m going to try and answer that question. I would have been funny, but it’s 12:48 am, you see, and nothing good comes out when you think at this time. So naturally, I’m sad that I’m partly misunderstood by everyone and my teenage life is a freaking roller coaster. So answering the “Who are you” question will consist of answering many other little questions, who define me as a “who”, cause that’s not done easily with anyone.
At the moment, I’m a person. I’m an exchange student. That defines a pretty big part of myself, but it’s not really going deep, is it? Yeah, there are many other people on this earth, who decide to go on exchange somewhere abroad. What defines us as individuals, though, is our motivation. I could come up with all that “I want to be international” crap, but we all know that’s not entirely true and saying otherwise would be a lie. I just really wanted to come to Finland. I don’t want to know how germans or afrikans live. I want Finland. And at first it was because of Sturm und Drang and Tage, I really wanted to see them. Then it grew into a fixed idea. It was not a question of “if”, but of “when”. I needed to go away from Bulgaria, I needed to break free from the atmosphere around me. I felt locked and the society was trying to turn me into something I didn’t like or approve. I felt the pressure to be perfect, everyone else’s expectations for how my life should go, there were always people telling me what to do, I wasn’t appreciated for what I am at the moment. People found wrong things about me, they thought I was annoying and stupid. I desperately needed to get away from all this isolation and negativity and I now had a place to go. I didn’t even have a doubt that it would be different here. But then again, these are just motives, they don’t tell you who I am.
So the fact is that I AM an exchange student. But I’m also so much more than that. I don’t like people looking at me like they look at a baby or at an animal. I can speak, I have my own opinion on everything, I can have a serious conversation, I can be of use, I’m smart enough, I’m ambicious, I have hopes, dreams, goals, feelings, I often express myself, but that is often concealed in the “exchange student” definition. I hate that. Now I can’t go out of that box. I don’t want to be defined. I want to be…me. Whatever that means. Why does it have to have a label? It’s easy, but it makes me feel like shit. Cause nobody really wants to know me. And it sucks. Cause I’m not bad.
Again, pretty general things that don’t say WHO I am. But if you know me, you know who I am. I’m not hiding myself. I’m not that hollow, all I need is someone to appreciate me. I like music, I know a lot of songs, I like to laugh, I watch a lot of movies, I take a lot of photos, I like science and animals, I want a cat, fluffy things are nice, colors are kinda my thing and inside jokes are fun. That really is me. I have learned that much about myself. I do not have any masks. If I’m emotional, I act like it, if I want attention, I get it, if I want to act like a bitch, I fucking do. But you know what? I wouldn’t change myself. My character is so colorful and vivid that even though some people don’t like it, it’s more unique than others. It pisses me off at times, but that’s that. And I have to learn to deal with it.
And my beliefs: God doesn’t exist, but will and independence do. No matter what everyone says, you’re beautiful. I really do believe that a person can do anything and the stars are the limit. I’m confident enough to believe in myself, but I think there are a lot of poor souls out there, who’s self-esteem has been crushed by society and I try my best to show people how beautiful they really are. I’m never mean to anyone, even on a joke. Words can hurt and I know that for a fact. It’s funny only when everyone is okay with it. I don’t think the bad stuff I say and I make damn sure that others know that too. I stripped off my prejudices a long time ago and the world became a better place. I don’t judge on people by their appearance or their social status. I take my time to know the people I communicate with and I’m happy I do so, because you might be surprised by the beauty I find in the most strangest of places.
Since I came to Finland I’ve been a happier person, even though I’ve never really been miserable. I’ve been blessed with a wonderful mother, who raised me right (in my opinion), so I never missed anything. I owe her my existence on a higher level than just “thanks for having sex with dad”. And I will love my mother completely and undeniably until the day I die.
Anyway, I have found friends here that I’m sure I can say I LOVE by the end of the year. I’m having a hard time believing that they’re real and all in one place, since my best friend used to live 300 km away from me, even when I was in Bulgaria. Of course, there have been bad days here as well, but I like the way it feels here. Someone is always there to cheer me up. And by the way, I have a personal message for Henkka (even though he’ll probably never read it on here and I don’t really care, I just have to put it somewhere), so:
I remember the first time I met you, it was the day before Tutor Ilta and you were sitting with Noora and Rasse, studying chemistry. I just came up to you guys and you were very nice to me for no apparent reason, which I now realize was strange. We were talking about blowing up the school with tooth paste and some other random shit, I don’t even remember. But I remember thinking how cool you were and how awesome you all sound and I thought that I would love to talk to you again some time. I did not try to impost myself on you. The next Wednesday I talked with Karen and I didn’t know anyone at that point, who I can call even a little bit of a friend. I told her I didn’t have anywhere to sit at lunch and she said “Don’t worry, we’ll take you with us!”. Of course, I didn’t sit at lunch with you, because I was too ashamed and I didn’t really know who she was referring to, when she said “us”, so I just sat alone on this big table filled with strangers talking in a language I knew nothing of. They didn’t even ask for my name. I just ate and that was it. I didn’t have a problem with that. But you know, a couple of weeks later unintentionally I started talking more to your group of people you call “gang”. I met Astrid and Iisa and the rest, we pranked Rasmus and it was fun and I liked it. You were being friendly as usual, so I didn’t think anything was wrong. But I guess I went too close with your people, because at one point I found myself staying every day after school to talk with you, cause I didn’t want to go home. And you know what? These conversations made my day! I used to wake up with a smile on my face, thinking “Hey, I’m going to meet all those awesome people today, I WANT to go to school because of them” (not that I’m not doing that not, but yeah). And at one point I started to feel you as friends. I have never in my life felt happier about having friends. But at the same time you started having problems with me. Remember, when I asked you a couple of times if you were mad at me for something and you said that everything was fine? Well, good that I didn’t believe that shit. You were acting so strange. Answering everything I ask, communicating with me, but you looked so annoyed and you tried to ignore me as much as possible. Don’t even try to deny it, cause everyone saw it. I spent days and days wondering what I might have done wrong to make you flip your switch. I’m still wondering. Is it because I came too close to your friends? Is it because you don’t like me as a person, or because you just don’t feel comfortable around me ? I don’t understand. I know there has been a discussion about whether I’m a part of your gang or not and even if nobody told me that you didn’t like the idea of me coming to that Halloween party, I would have guessed immediately. What have I done to you? Why? I’m having fun with you, guys, isn’t that what’s important? I’ve been nothing but nice to you, I’ve talked to you probably more than with all the others combined, where the hell is the problem? Why can’t I be “one of you”? And you know, it doesn’t matter what you think of me, cause I will always like you as a friend. You are an amazing person and I’m glad I know you, even if the feeling isn’t mutual. You’re funny and you’re smart and you’re generally a good guy. And I could just let you be in peace, instead of trying to understand you, but it’s just the bloody reason that keeps on bugging me inside. Maybe it’s just a misunderstanding? Or do you really dislike me?