I was born in Camden, NJ which was ranked one of the worst cities in America. Luckily, We moved out of there when I was younger into Cherry Hill which was a much nicer city. I grew up with modest means, living off on food stamps and welfare checks. My family still uses food stamps well my mother’s side of the family still does. No shame in that. I know people are embarrassed about admitting it but I am not anymore.
I am writing and showing my vulnerability hoping to inspire others to be more positive and to look at the bright side of things. It pains me to think that my father has left me and my younger two siblings when I was a freshman in high school. At the ripe age of 15, I was exposed to a lot. My parents constantly arguing and my father even went to jail and his brothers and sisters had to bail him out.
Growing up was tough, we moved around a lot. I did not have a lot of stability in my life which could explain why throughout the beginning stages of my life. There was a lot of instability in my relationships. I have moved around to 15 different places or more but who’s counting.
When I moved to California around Kindergarten, I didn’t have a close group of friends. I had a couple of friends but my parents were striving to be able to pay rent on time living paycheck to paycheck. My dad is a salesman and it is ironic that I told myself I would never want to be like my father after he just left us without telling us at the drop of a dime. My parents were never really officially married, they just lived together. It is kind of funny how my dad’s side of the family thinks he is a great guy and still til this day defends his honor. It is funny how unconditional love can really warp your perspective. But I am not mad at them, I do understand everything is entitled to their opinions.
I think it is important to try to be as objective as possible. Which is why I try to not be judgemental of others as of late and more importantly judge myself.
I was diagnosed with ADHD and although many Asians do not really believe it is a thing. It is a real thing, I struggle to sit still in the seat even when I get a haircut til this day I can barely sit still. In classrooms, I have to go to the bathroom or go get water from the water foundation every 20 minutes or less. I still have never sat through an entire lecture or class session without having to get outside for a “break”.
I do notice a lot of differences when taking Adderall. When I finally got life insurance, because the school gave us some life insurance for being a student I actually started doing well in school for about a semester. Once, I hit 21, they were forced to not give me life insurance anymore so I went back to my poor academic ways.
Although, I did take honor classes and were with really smart students. IB classes. Which is similar to AP if you guys do not know what it is. We were a magnet school, so I surrounded by people and was always or felt like one of the dumbest in my classes. I moved back to Cherry Hill, NJ in 5th grade and was actually voted most reserved in the yearbook by my classmates. It is funny to think that knowing myself now and how much of an open book I am.
I was extremely socially awkward and virtually spent my whole life playing video games and playing beanie babies with my sisters because I didn’t have any friends.
I went to middle school and somewhere I think halfway along 7th grade I decided to go outside my comfort zone and put myself out there. There I made a lot of “friends”, well I would say it was more acquaintances because I had a lot of friends but not necessarily a group of people that I consistently hung out with.
I found myself wanting to talk to everyone but nothing of real substance but we are all in middle school right? Who talks about philosophical things and the meaning of life at that young of an age?
Oh yeah, try adding an extreme case of asthma to the big list of problems I have growing up. I had an inhaler and everything. I actually was one of the slowest milers in elementary, I think I was last? I am not sure, but it wouldn’t surprise me.
I do notice I always have a ton of energy though, like with most kids with ADHD we all have a ton of energy so I started running more often. Slowly my asthma went away. I started doing cross country and track in 8th grade. I did develop a passion for having fun and just running and my mind was always racing was finally able to sleep at night just from being tired from track practice and cross country practices. Most nights I could not sleep and averaged about 5 hours of sleep every day. I still average 5 to 6 hours of sleep a night but I fall asleep in less than 5 seconds most nights. I used to just lie in bed for over an hour every day. It was really bad.
High school was totally different from the rest of my childhood. Now that we didn’t move every 6 months, I started having “friends”. I was super involved in school and joined the Asian Culture Club, spring track, winter track, bowling, cross country, newspaper- lions roar, and did relay for life. The list goes on, I started feeling more confident, more self-aware that I have the talents to become more likable and to make friends and just be more the true me. Still, I never had a steady group of friends, I had a ton of friends to hang out with not really a lot that I hung out for more than a couple of years.
College was an entirely different story as well, I joined Pi Delta Psi and met so many cool role models and alumnus and brothers who shared a common theme of always wanting to be better and were breaking Asian stereotypes. They were successful, rich, hard working, they were athletic. I wanted to be just like them, so I started lifting weights with them. I idolized the brothers and thought everything they did was amazing. Accomplishing so much being able to host events, starting their own organizations like Rutgers Cantonese Club and being on the board of all of the Asian clubs such as Chinese Student Organization and Taiwanese American Students Association.
Anyways, I started making a ton of new contacts road tripping everywhere. We went to Binghamton University, University of Riverside, University of Florida, University of Central Florida, Stony Brook, Cornell, Columbia, NYU, University of Maryland – College Park, basically everywhere where there was a chapter. This is the first time I actually had a close group of friends that I felt at peace with. But still, while being social chair and having to pay for college myself without any help from my parents.
I felt like life was unfair, why did all of these things happen to me? I was always comparing myself to others, my grades were horrible, how come everyone else had help with parents giving them money to be able to help them pay for tuition. Life was so unfair for me. I then realized it was my biggest advantage because I had so much more work experience than everyone else. My work ethic is so much stronger because I had to work 20-40 hours a week on the weekends and at night after school work to pay for my own expenses. It was a blessing in disguise.
Now, that I am older. I realized that everything does happen for a reason. I am extremely blessed and fortunate to have a loving girlfriend who is faithful and loyal. My relationships are getting better, I am learning to accept my family. It is not my mom’s fault she left as a refugee to escape Vietnam. She is so brave to have witnessed people dying in front of her hands during the war. She is still traumatized by this but has recently let me know about these moments which I am very grateful for her sharing.
It is not her fault that she is not educated and had no opportunity to go to college and did not even graduate from high school. It is not my father’s fault that he also did not have the opportunity to go to college and graduate from high school. Maybe my father leaving us had nothing to do with us but maybe it was a blessing to be able to afford me the foundation for my work ethic. Once you sell door to door Verizon Fios and selling Cutco knives, I truly believe you can do anything. Being in sales, you cannot blame anyone else but yourself. I am truly blessed to work for a huge company that cares about their employees with endless opportunities.
I am excited to be launching my own company called NOVA (Network of Visionary Asians) with 4 other business partners in April to make a huge difference and be able to inspire others and connect others like I continuously do on a daily basis. I have officially launched my life coaching business called Kaizen coaching to be able to help others find the greatness in oneself. It is funny how others hinted and saw the greatness in me but I never saw it myself. I still to this day do not think I am good at anything. I do think I have a natural tendency to be able to be curious and love to ask a billion questions which drives my ability to grow and learn on a daily basis. I love blogging and being vulnerable because I think we are all the same. I used to think wow, life is so unfair. Why does everyone have it better than I do, whereas now I reframe my mindset and perspective and stop comparing myself to everything else but start comparing myself to myself weeks ago, months ago, years ago. If I am not growing and putting myself out there then I will never be able to progress as a professional.
I thank you for reading this and spending the time getting to know me. I created my own mission statement where I will live my life by these words.
I, Davidson Hang provide value by being an excellent confidante and inspire motivation through myself by increasing everyone’s power base. I strive to never give up in the endeavors I am passionate about and I am the best example of resilience, confidence, and ethical leadership who always looks to make an insightful difference.
Reach out to me if you are having a bad day or you just need someone to vent to. I promise, things will get better if you will just believe in yourself and stop comparing yourself to everyone else.
My phone number is 856 278 6168 if you want to text me or firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to shoot me an email.