Portrait of a Bitch: Bitchtopia’s Dhruvi Shah

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I was extremely excited to interview someone because there is nothing more thrilling, to me, than meeting someone new. Especially since we are from different cities and different cultures. Dhruvi surprised me by being so similar to me in energy and honesty, and although we only conversed through messages, I can honestly say we could easily become friends. We’ve even discussed being pen pals! Another thing that I loved about Dhruvi is her involvement in school and other endeavors–she actually inspired me to be more like how I was in high school (involved and actually caring about what I was spending my time doing). Dhruvi gives me hope that the younger generation of women aren’t only focused on superficial things; that they are strong, intelligent, funny, understanding, and accepting beings.

YM: What moment or series of events can you say changed or influenced you?

DS: This is hard for me to answer because, as a teenager who’s been “going through stuff” for the past 4 years, my life is pretty much a carnival of new experiences and life lessons. Middle school was huge for me, though, I learned a lot about myself and grew into most of who I think I’ll end up being. Also, both my middle school English teachers challenged my beliefs and pushed my work ethic. It was a really amazing three years.

What does the word ‘bitch’ mean to you?

I will be completely honest, with the way I’ve grown up around that word and the way it’s used around me, my mind gives that word a negative definition. To me, a bitch is a rude, nasty, generally female person. I don’t look down upon those who call themselves a “bitch” and use that word synonymously with “outgoing” or “fierce”. Those are traits I admire, I just wouldn’t associate them with being a bitch.

How did you get involved with Bitchtopia?

I followed the blog for a while as a reader and I absolutely loved the content. When I came across a call for submissions on the Bitchtopia page, I freaked out. I was questioning whether the blog would want me as a contributor, but I guess I’m not too bad because here I am! 🙂

I understand that you’re in high school still, what activities are you involved in?

I’m on the math team, for which my grade went to state last year. I also partake in Model UN (a high school UN simulation) and have literally just started my own spoken word poetry club. I’m not too athletic, but I love working out. I would probably be on track (even with an 11 minute mile) if it wasn’t for hardcore runners at this point, but most days I end up going to the school gym after school or something.

What do you do for fun or to decompress from stress?

For fun, I like to read, write, and create art. To decompress, I love working out (usually weight training instead of cardio, but I’ll do both). Music is also huge. Fun music is generally motown, A7X, or film scores while decompressing music would be Enya, folk Indie, or classical. I’m also meditative, but I have yet to sit down and meditate for 30 minutes. I have somehow gradually developed the habit of being mindful and analytical of my thoughts throughout the day, which helps me so much with my stress. That would probably be second on my list of what to change about the world, it’s such a great tool.

If you could have any special talent or superpower what would it be?

Does being happy for long periods of time count? Haha, probably all the traits that make up a time lord (Doctor Who) combined into one, that would be a superpower I’d kill for. I love traveling, meeting new people, and sometimes you just need that escape.

How would you describe yourself or at least give insight to who you are to a complete stranger? Do you have a story that you could say encompasses who you are?

I’m an extremist. Sometimes I’m really happy, sometimes I’m really sad. I have a need to control things. I’m the embodiment of OCPD. I really, really want to change the world, and I am an absolute people pleaser. I started planning for college when I was in third grade. I get overwhelmed with my brain a lot. I am highly ambitious, and super confident until you get to know me better. I am addicted to learning new things. I fall in love with most people I know, not romantically but definitely just as intensely. I speak in awkwardly fragmented sentences while describing myself. I crack myself up.

If you could kiss anyone in the world, who would it be and why?

Robert Downey Jr. because he is a god. No but seriously, that man has got depth. He’s funny, he’s intelligent, he’s super frickin’ hot, and he’s had a tough life. Not to mention, his Meyers-Briggs type is ENTP, to those who know what on Earth I am talking about.

What’s more terrifying–a world without women or a world with silenced women?

A world with silenced women. In theory, it’d be painful to see a world without women, but to who? Those who liked women and wished they weren’t all gone. Not to the actual women, because they are nonexistent. So it would be secondary pain. However, the first hand pain of the silenced women would be much worse.

What would you say to any girls out there who feel they don’t have strong voices?

It’s fine being passive to a degree. I’ve known women and men so outspoken that they just ended up creating problems for themselves. Just remember this: everyone’s a little selfish. When not speaking out clashes with your ideals, you better say something. There are two phrases I live by in my life: 1. Life is too short to pretend to be someone else. 2. The worst kind of regret is the regret one feels on their deathbed.

The floor is yours–is there anything you’d like to say to the world?

Start being mindful of who you are, your impact on other people, your impact on the world. From your digital footprint to your carbon footprint to the marks your parenting leaves on your children. I think we all get so caught up in the daily grind that we don’t realize the massive gift that life is. Life is 80 years if you’re lucky, a couple more days if you’re not. Even if you have faith in a higher power, you don’t know something will come next. So stop wasting this life to get to the next one. Leave the message you want to leave, not one you “end up” leaving.

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