Intertwined thoughts with a big side of complementary feelings… or the story of a “curiouser and curiouser!”

Over a month has passed since I met the group of people that would change my life forever. I still can’t believe I get to be part of this amazing experience and I still have my daily dose of impostor syndrome, but at the same time, now I can’t imagine my life—personal and professional—without being part of CPI!

Ever since I was a little girl (still little in height but you know what I meant), I’ve been the weird one. In school and even within the extended family, I was always the one who’d ask that awkward question or just not follow the set of rules because they were boring, and it only comes down to me being curious, me trying to understand human behavior. And I’m not praising myself for being the “cool rebel one”, not at all! I was definitely the weird one and I got bullied because I didn’t want to do things the way everyone was doing them, I got outcasted, told off and even laugh at from teachers.

Who would think that curiosity would transform (in the long run) into the essence of a “career”, a path that allows me to explore other cultures, meet amazing curious people and ultimately stay sane and happy within the quirky boundaries of being myself.

The whole situation makes me uncomfortable and definitely gets me thinking. Over the history of mankind we have witnessed, from every corner of human knowledge, that people who venture into making things different are usually taken for granted, unacknowledged and unrecognized. And only until their way of thinking is established as the new normal, they will be considered like innovators or change makers. But if this situation keeps happening over and over again, why do we keep segregating what is different? why do we teach children they have to behave, speak and think in certain ways? why do we want them to be the same? why do we want “normal people” that are not interested or engaged with the physical and social situations that surround them?

It took me over 25 years to understand I don’t need to fit in entirely and that is ok. And even though it is a work in progress that has ups and downs, it is something I need to embrace everyday.

Meeting the cohort (doubtlessly of dreams!) helped me reassure that doing things different is definitely worth the struggle! We might not be the next “ add the name of your favorite forward thinker ”, but we can definitely help to change some minds; and yes it will take more time than a regular job/interest, it will drain us of energy, we will doubt ourselves and our capacities most of the time, we will agonize when everything starts to fall apart (figuratively or literally) and there will be a time when we fail or get things very wrong (like Matthew Austin, I still shudder when I think about his experience!)! but we now have a safety network! It’s like having a super changemaker that has 15 different super powers (including self preservation)! So trying new things, formats, methodologies, professions and just experimenting does not feel lonely anymore, learning from mistakes does not feel like a one-woman struggle, and thinking different feels like a challenging mist of joy!

Getting to know the 15 producers was absolutely mind blowing, I will always be extremely thankful to Clare, Pete, Jo, Hillary and everyone at the Pervasive Media Studio for creating such a project for us weirdos of the world to join our strengths!

The Bristol Lab definitely boosted my energy, reminded me I have a privileged position at work and I enjoy daily what I do, even with all the pains that come with it! I can’t wait for the digital party, lab and the next couple of years!