Turning coal into diamonds

“Society perceives us by physical appearance. And to society, I’m just a brown boy who’s trying to turn coal into diamonds. I was 11 years old when I first heard Nav. Nav is a Canadian rapper of Punjabi descent. I thought if he could do it, why can’t I? We came from the same background and similar households. Then what was holding me back? I was just as passionate about music, I wanted to make beats and plan with force.

I was really passionate and quite content with what I was doing. I had gotten 1000 views on my first track which was a milestone for me. But with love comes hate. I was receiving a lot of hate from people close to me and was told I was delusional and an embarrassment to my family. Dealing with internet hate was just as difficult. However, I didn’t take it personally. People made me feel small and directed their anger at me, but I had to do what I had to do. A while later, I just wasn’t able to focus on the positive anymore and deleted my tracks. I started to feel trapped and felt I wasn’t living my dream but what society was expecting me to do.

In spite of that, I still make beats and still write lyrics. No matter what society says I still have a lot of faith in myself. I know I will come out of all the hate and continue my journey. Growing up as kids of immigrants we’ve been told to be doctors, lawyers, and engineers. But I know that’s not where my potential is. I still want a degree and complete my education but I don’t want to kill my dreams. I’m not going to make it big or win a grammy unless I believe in myself. I truly believe one day all those people who felt embarrassed being seen with me, will say that’s my friend, cousin, or some guy I played basketball with. I need to keep on hustling and believing in my own talent. Because I know diamonds are created by pressure.”

-Shahzad905

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