My Mantra

My Name is Andrew Hitzhusen and I am a Theatre/History double major at Northwestern University.

My Name is Andrew Hitzhusen.

Why do I find myself repeating this mantra on a daily basis? It’s not like the tibetan mantras that are supposed to lead to the letting go of reality and the eventual en-nirvana-fication of the soul. It’s not like the preppy soccer moms who repeat their goals under their breath as they grunt through zumba. It’s not the zombie call for brains.

Instead, I think it’s like a mirror. I repeat it and hear in the intonation of my voice and see how I’m doing. I check in with my emotions and see how those emotions are reflected in my voice. I want to see that the face that I’m showing the world is honest. Or at the very least, I want to know what that mask looks like.

But at some deeper level, I think it’s like a mirror for a different reason. Like a mirror, it reminds me that I’m alive and present. It stands as a marker for my selfhood. A reminder that I exist.

I repeat it every day, not because I have a time set aside to repeat it or because I feel like I need to say it every day, but rather because it happens that I find myself doing it. I didn’t realize that I used it as a mantra for the longest time, because I just did it. Intention-less. But once I discovered it, it is both a tool and a fact. I can use it and it uses me. I say it and it has me say it.

My Name: declarative, capital N implying a significant article, possessive,

Andrew Hitzhusen: Lion of God, House of Hot Tempers

I am: declarative, the great I AM, a statement of idenity

Theatre/History double major: fiction and fact intermixed through the medium of storytelling, the two academic loves of my life. a double major means that I’m responsible because I haven’t placed all my eggs in one basket, it means I’m creative and analytical by turns.

Northwestern University: Places me in space and time. Can be negative and positive by turns. Often used to tell myself and others that I’m in a place that it known, that I am part of something larger, identified by my school. Problematic? Definitely.


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