Filipino Pride

Culture is something that affects almost everybody and it isn’t any different for freshman Annika Pastrana

Freshman Annika Pastrana proudly displays her Filipino flag.

Freshman Annika Pastrana proudly displays her Filipino flag.

London Powell, Reporter

From the day she was born, freshman Annika Pastrana’s Filipino heritage and culture has been something that has affected her life. Although Pastrana wasn’t born in the Philippines and has never been, she is still extremely connected to her culture and has heard enough stories to feel as though she has been.

“My culture is a huge part of my daily life,” Pastrana said. “I mean it doesn’t really affect my school life all that much but once I get home it affects everything.”

At home is where Pastrana’s cultural pride shines bright. She follows multiple daily Filipino traditions. Every morning she tells her family good morning and every night she tells them goodnight. Another daily tradition that Pastrana does is once her father arrives home she welcomes him home and takes his shoes off. She also has a Filipino flag hanging in her room to show off her pride.

“I have the flag on my wall because of how proud I am to be Filipino and because it stands for so much,” Pastrana said.

But even though she is extremely proud of her heritage, she wasn’t always this way. Pastrana really didn’t connect to her culture and heritage until she was in the sixth grade.

“Growing up in a American suburbs, I got the feeling of wanting to be like the people around me,” Pastrana said. “People thought the different things I did were weird, especially the foods I ate, they would always comment on the smells of it.”

Growing up in a American suburbs, I got the feeling of wanting to be like the people around me,” Pastrana said. “People thought the different things I did were weird, especially the foods I ate, they would always comment on the smells of it.”

— Annika Pastrana

This affected Pastrana for quite a long time until she decided to make a change and get involved.

“Looking back on it now I regret not getting connected until then, but now it’s something that I flaunt around. Now when I met someone new it’s like ‘Oh hi I’m Annika and I’m Filipino!’”

One of Pastrana’s closest friends, freshman Megan Sproull, confirms that Pastrana “flaunts around” her culture.

“Annika still finds a way to bring up her culture into every conversation we have,” Sproull revealed.

To go from someone who was uninterested in their culture, to someone who shows it off every chance they get, is truly something inspiring. Everyone could learn a little something about cultural pride from Annika Pastrana.