Meet Zina Balkus Abdelkarim

“I went through a process in my life during which I decided to be myself and not be afraid of what other people might think about me. When I was a child people used to tease me for being different. I wasn’t like any other playful and careless kid. I actually wasn’t keen on playing at all. I was very inquisitive, questioned everything (and still do) and didn’t accept things as they were. I was so serious about so many things and would always tell people what was the right thing to do and what wasn´t. For example, whenever I saw a person cheat, or make fun of someone else, I would intervene and act as a judge. However, other children who were around me didn’t like my “adult” attitude. They disliked my bossy character and that’s why they made fun of me.

Then I grew up and somehow became a bookworm who discovered the world of fiction. That endless world. Especially “Harry Potter” helped me to accept myself and stop trying to change because of others. So I would advise you, without trying to sound arrogant, to just like yourself, accept the fact that you are only human and simply try to do your best.”

Photo courtesy of Mária Murcinová