This post is in partnership with BAND-AID® Brand. However, all opinions expressed are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that encourage my creativity.
If success is a journey, my journey began twenty-five years ago when I came to the United States with my mom, for a year, to learn English. Little did I know that the adventure we both embarked, would shape my character and the person that I am today.
I’ve been sharing a lot of my stories on this website for more than seven years, and for the first time, I share a glimpse of my journey in this video.
There were many low moments where I felt inadequate, different, and not good enough. In high school, I was very social, eager to please the kids around me, and worked hard to make friends. It’s not easy to make friends when you have a hard time finding words to share a simple story –can you imagine my embarrassment when I had to pull out a pocket dictionary in the middle of hanging out with my friends? Awkward, yes; and yet, I kept on.
Every day after school, I’d come home and watch typical American 90s television shows to tune my ear to the language and learn the current slang kids used at school. This, of course, is before on-demand television and we only had basic cable of ten channels at most. At night, I’d watch game shows, not understanding much of it most of the time.
Have you ever watched that particular cartoon on television and heard the teacher’s voice sound? “muah muah, muah” that’s what everything sounded to me on television and in real life for months. Until one day, the sound “clicked” and everything changed. My brain was no longer translating words, and I could understand everything!
There I was, my twelve-year-old self, sitting in front of the television one afternoon and realizing that I could understand every word! After months of watching television with a pen and paper next to me (to write down words to look up later) and bringing a large dictionary to school that not only weighed my backpack down but was a constant reminder that I was different as it was clearly displayed on my desk… I did it!
That day, I realized that if I could learn a language (without technology mind you) on my own, I could pretty much teach myself anything if I stuck with it long enough to see myself succeed.
Keeping it together while using new BAND-AID® SKIN-FLEX™ Bandages.
And I have, and I will. With each accomplishment, I’m able to set new goals for myself, goals that, years ago would have never occurred to me to even dream about! Competing (and winning!) on Food Network, writing cookbooks, and my appearing live on a TV show I used to watch to learn English so many years ago? Yes!
With each milestone and goal achieved, I’ve gained self-confidence and determination to do better, learn more, and expand what I know. In many ways, I’m not the shy 12-year-old that struggled to make friends and felt awkward; but in other ways, she’s still there pushing herself to stick with it and succeed –she’s just older, wiser, and still as adventurous as ever.
Is there something you’ve stuck with long enough to see the success in your life?