I completed my third week as an intern at the ANCA-WR office and I love every moment. This being my first time at an internship, I was expecting something different, not sure exactly what, but I am enjoying what unfolded. I am feeling more empowered as an Armenian American female to explore my history, my culture, language, and food. I like to share my heritage with the people I care about and what better way to do so than with food.
Armenian culture cultivates a convivial environment surrounded around food and it seems as though that is a topic of conversation between us interns at any time of day. We have Armenian Americans with different backgrounds each familiar with the home cooked foods influenced by the country from which their ancestry last resided in. It seems as though regardless of where each of our families are originally from, we are nonetheless Armenian Americans, and that is what resonates.
Putting meaning on the fact that my family is from Iran, or that others are from Lebanon, Syria, Armenia, Russia or whichever country, is something that holds us back from humanity. I know this now as an adult, but when I was younger it was important for me to have friends that had my similar background. I did not feel fully comfortable, as I am sure is the case with other children my age, with other types of Armenians or non-Armenians, mostly because of the biases fed to us by parents, uncles, aunts, family friends and the like. This type of mentality is vain and should not exist; it only holds one back from experiences that can enrich ones life.
As I have become aware of the opportunities the world holds for us, I try to enlighten others with this point of view. Not that I am a guru or anything of that sort, I just truly believe that we are all the same people and need to respect each other and enjoy life to the fullest.