Movements of Life

I was in a different place now, a world where I have to start doing things on my own. The first day of high school was something I looked forward to. I was scared  yet I was happy. This is the beginning of a new chapter in my life that I get to enjoy. As I walked from the Broad Street Line subway to the trolley, my heart raced. I only have two stops till I get to my new school and as I got closer to 22nd and Market, my heart beats faster. I walked out of the trolley stop and turned the corner of 22nd and Market. There were students everywhere, the strangers that I will have to see throughout my high school life. As I entered the front doors of the school I signed in and looked around, confused on where to go. But, thankfully I received an email about a week or so before school started, telling me where I can find my advisory. This was the fall of 2014, my freshmen year of highschool, the start of the “best years of my life,” said everyone I knew.

But now, here I am in my junior year, the winter of 2016, coming to an end, moving to 2017.Junior year, the “most important year,” just like 7th grade, because this is the year that can lead me to  my future education. Thinking about college brings back all of the times when I moved into a new environment. The past two and a half years of high school has been a thrill but here I am, about to start into the stages of finding a new place to learn. My school have been discussing about colleges; having junior college night, letting us talk to some of the representatives from different colleges and taking us to college fairs. I wonder at times, will there ever be a time where I’ll stop changing environments? Moving to highschool and now thinking about moving to college isn’t the only time that I’ve experienced a change in my life.

Being a six year old, just graduated out of kindergarten, knowing that I have to move to the US and going to first grade there, terrified me. But, my parents took our family to go vacation before we left. When I got here, I cried for weeks when I first moved and told my parents that I wanted to go back home and that I didn’t want to be here. I cried every night, knowing that it was useless to ask to go home. The summer of 2006, was one of the worse summers of my life. My eyes got puffy every night, my face was red as a tomato, six year old me didn’t have any power but to cry and ask to be taken back home. Restless, sleeping on a wet pillow, I flipped the pillow over, not realizing that I’ve already flipped it before, so I turned the pillow to the other edge, where my damp face looked for the comfort in the softness of the pillow. I faced the wall when I slept  because that’s where I found myself at peace, that’s probably why I still do that today.

It’s getting closer to fall, so my parents enrolled my older brother and I to a Catholic school to be exact, St. Thomas Aquinas and my oldest brother to a Catholic High school. I could barely speak a sentence of English, even though I took an English class back in Indonesia. I walked to school with my brother and on the first day we met with some other Indonesian kids that went there. They were friendly, but sadly, they were all my brother’s age. I didn’t talk much in school, because I didn’t know how, but as I watched cartoons everyday I learned a lot. After three to four months later, the winter of 2006, I wasn’t afraid to speak to people. Things got harder for me, I was experiencing my first winter. I’m not used to this kind of weather, the coldest that I’ve ever experienced in Indonesia was probably about 60-70 degrees fahrenheit but it didn’t feel cold at all because of all the humidity there.

My family lived with my aunt, my dad’s oldest sister, until we can find our own place to live. Going to a catholic school meant that my parents had to spend a lot just for us to go to school. After a year, it was too much for them to send all three of us to a Catholic school so my oldest brother and I went to a public school and my second to oldest brother stayed at a Catholic school another year until he got into a public high school. With that said, moving to a new school meant I have to start all over again. I didn’t know anyone nor was I good in speaking English. Only a year has passed since I moved to the U.S and it was harder than I thought.

From second grade to eighth grade, I made a lot of friends and helped out a lot of teachers. Things were fine until I realized that I have to start highschool soon. As my eight grade year started, my mind was filled with talks about high school, “The best years of your life.” The fall of 2013 was one of the most important time for me. At times, I would feel really helpless because there were schools that my parents chose, there were schools I wanted to go to, and there were schools that I was eligible to apply to. After I finished applying to the schools that I wanted to go to, it was just a matter of time to get the results. Weeks passed, and then a couple months went by. I was really nervous when I finally received my high school acceptance letter. I decided to open it with one of my closest friends, hoping that we’d go to the same school. As I was holding the letter for the whole day, walking up and down the stairs, the walls were different colors in different parts of the school. Walking through the hallways, I noticed that the floors were dirtier than before, cobweb to my left, below the windows, dust on the edge of the doors. I was nervous; anxious to see what the results were, that I didn’t even focus on my class.

Long story short, I got accepted to my first choice school, Science Leadership Academy, SLA. Sadly, none of my friends got accepted so coming to SLA was like a fresh new book for me. It was a new start, a new story, that needs to be filled in. I’d say that high school is a fun experience. A new journey, without knowing anyone was an experience that can’t be forgotten. I made a lot of friends and got to know multiple teachers, but soon, I know that I’d have to start all over again as time passes by. Every new beginning will be a terrifying thing for me, sometimes it’ll probably stress me out, and sometimes I’ll probably be excited for it, but at the end, moving and having a new start can be a good thing. Like what Jim Rohn, an author of many books said, “Life is not just the passing of time. Life is the collection of experiences and their intensity.”  

Comments (2)

Hadleigh Stammers (Student 2018)
Hadleigh Stammers

I learned about how the many environmental changes in your life affect you and how at first you may have not been the most positive, you began to gain a more positive outlook. I liked how you look forward and seem to be open minded when it comes to future changes in your life.

Sopheary Sok (Student 2018)
Sopheary Sok

I learned that SLA was a new journey for you and you came here optimistic for a fresh start by yourself. I like that you mentioned that you will have to go through big changes all over again for college.