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Dolphin Tales

Pursuing a Childhood Passion

Yume, Class of 2019, while living not far from NIS is pursuing her childhood passion, while not forgetting to enjoy a cup of herb tea.


Where are you living now?
Aichi Nagoya, not too far away from NIS.

What kind of work are you doing?
After taking a break from Fashion school, I am still figuring things out but I am a part time illustrator at a neurodivergent workplace in a supportive environment for people who have special needs. I sometimes teach as an assistant to inexperienced artists in the studio while taking care of myself.

What do you enjoy most about your job?
My job is my childhood passion!! Everything in my working environment gives me butterflies in my stomach because I get to draw and learn at the same time. Meeting supportive people and teaching people about how wonderful art is everyday even though I do not have an average salary yet. Getting out to buy food and clothes at the nearby mall after work sometimes is exciting. Also, speaking my second mother tongue with my boss who speaks fluent English is such a relief in a Japanese environment for sure!!!!!

What kind of challenges does it hold for you?
Battling my chronic health issues everyday while working and doing simple daily life tasks are difficult sometimes, even though I enjoy my current work-life balance lifestyle. Learning CAN be utterly hard for me. At work I struggle with slight cultural differences. I sometimes don’t pick up conversations quickly and I’ll have to ask people to repeat sentences. Understanding communication is challenging sometimes.

Did NIS help you prepare for your current position in any way? 
To be honest, I’m not really an academic person so I can’t write much about academic aspects, but the school support system helped me get through rough times during my NIS years. NIS saved my life to live a healthier life. Although I would say that NIS made my personality unique and stand out in a Japanese environment, where a lot of people are conservative about speaking their opinions. 

What’s the one thing that you are really enjoying or get most excited about these days? 
The most exciting thing these days is picking what herbs to put into my tea pot, making myself a cup of warm herb tea, and meditating to help myself function better before going to work. This makes me happy. Work itself makes me excited to be on earth. Fooling around with my four cats and following my daily routine of greeting my parents, cats, and plushies good morning and goodnight is very satisfying. 

What’s the one thing you miss most about NIS? 
I desperately miss the international diverse environment with a non judgmental and less conservative environment. I miss the vibe of friendly, chill communication where I don't have to think about forming formal sentences in my head.. I definitely do not miss math class!!!!

Lastly, what words of wisdom do you have for today’s Dolphins?
Feel the present moment and perish the small things. If you think about the past then you’ll learn from mistakes or feel butterflies in the stomach but don’t be stuck there. Thinking about the future will make you have the motivation for the present moment but thinking about it too much will bring you anxiety. Keep going, don’t give up but also don’t forget to sip a tea before you break yourself. If you are gonna give up then make sure that is what you seriously want. Just because you took a hit, it doesn’t mean you lost value and assertive communication is the key!