Credit: IOM/ John Walder
“Growing up in a multicultural household was confusing. I remember being confused; there is no other word for it. I was not allowed to do things that my American friends were allowed to do, I was doing things differently than my American friends were doing. I was eating different food. Normal American kids would bring snack pack or a lunchable box - that was the thing in the 90’s when I was a kid - and I’d be coming with falafel and hummus sandwiches and trying to explain to my friends why I am eating a sandwich with a yoghurt cheese spread inside. They all thought it was gross. So there was always a piece of me that was different no matter what group of people I was trying to fit in with.
Being the daughter of two immigrants, I feel I have to work twice as hard as my friends whose families have been here for generations just so I can prove to my family it was worth it for them to come here and to make this journey and start their lives all over again. Being a child of immigrants, it means balancing two different cultures. Growing up I had a hard time accepting that I was part of these two different worlds that are so conflicting.
However, coming from a culturally diverse background, I think it is absolutely a benefit, it’s made me more open-minded. I have more of a curiosity for the outside world and for getting out of my bubble, my comfort zone. I love learning about other cultures and other religions. I think it is definitely beneficial to my life to have this diverse background."