What are your ambitions for 2030?
I just turned down an offer to go to medical school. I worked on the application process for years. Mailing, writing, testing... And then I turned it down. People are shocked when I tell them. "Really? You wasted that opportunity?" Which makes me feel crazy. I do feel like I chose to be less ambitious when I said no. My mom is a doctor, and I'm really proud of her. But listening to her talk about her choices... She chose to go because she had to prove something: She was the first generation of women in her family who could go. So she had to go. And she's happy enough with her decision, it's not that, it's just that she did what was expected of her. But I don't have to do that, you know? I can focus more on environmental justice. Because it's more true to what I love. There was this one time when I was in kindergarten, there was a huge tree outside our house that was cut down. And I remember standing by the window, watching, and crying for hours. It's one of my earliest memories, actually. Protecting nature just feels more like my place in the world. Also, working outside is a reflex for me. I get restless when I go too many days without getting dirt under my fingernails.
Annabel (from Boston) // Bethlehem, Palestine