I was born in a place, a fast-paced city filled with the pristine ambitions of the world that shines every night like a million stars. Thriving in a city like New York City. The world is constantly revolving, like a stream overwhelmed by rapid currents. Fallen head first into the bristling cool water, I have always been searching for my breath. But unable to stop, I have to maneuver my way through the obstacles, the abrupt turns, the rough cracks. I can’t stop because I’m afraid to be left behind, watching the backs of those before me, slowly flowing out of my grasps, disappearing with the coming years.
My parents always tell me about their perilous journeys to America. Strangers in an unknown country with no one to help, they built their lives from scratch, slowly making their way up the ladder. Teeth clenched and accompanied by only memories of home, they worked night and day to put dinner on the table.
Only $13.90 / page
I’m thankful of them but eventually my gratitude towards them made me feel indebted. My parents are one of the main reasons I push myself this hard. In a way I’m the dream that they never fulfilled. They see themselves in me, because by raising me in a better environment, I am able to attain the education, status, and wealth that they were never able to. Our parents sacrificed so much for our upbringing, its only right we sacrifice for them to, and at least with our hands, add a colorful stroke to their realistic canvas of neutral grays and brooding black.
Ever since I remembered, I have always had the passion for drawing. Memories will constantly bring me back to first grade, when I first tasted the fruit of creativity. It’s actually kind of funny, because back then, I would draw, but have no idea what I’m drawing. Even now, whenever I draw, the ideas just come flowing in through me, circulating within my blood, captivating my nerves. It gave me a sense of satisfaction, to know that I can create art with my nimble fingers. I never liked my fingers since they’re so small, I can’t play piano with them nor can I grasp strongly onto the monkey bars. My first art was a picture of different kinds of fashion designs that just solidified in the corner of my head. I would never give up my talent nor will I let it rust away with the years of aged times. Art was more than an escape for me, it was my illustrated story, highlighting my peaks, and glorifying my falls.
I love writing-poems, essays, fictions, and quotes. My pen not only became my weapon against the monsters of reality but it had also become the negotiator between my dreams and the real world. Creative writing has become one of my best subjects this term. Writing used to be my worst, until my English teacher inspired me to focus on writing, but this impact also steered me away from the stereotype-Asians are extremely good at math. I’m a little frustrated at that because after I became a writing person, I can no longer take math for granted. But I will earn that status back again. I’m just going to have to learn how to balance math and English. So now whenever I have a math test, I’ll study extra hard for it.
One of my proudest abilities is my understanding of Chinese. Even though I am an ABC-American Born Chinese, I am not that out of touch with my blood and color. I still keep my traditional values like wearing a jade Buddha on my neck or wearing red to conjure luck on significant days. Even though I’m more liberal than my older family members, our family structure is still based on Confucius principles and I will obediently follow them. I’m different from a lot of ABCS, because I understand Chinese idioms and my sentences aren’t fragmented- I can be called fluent in my language. I’m extremely thankful that my parents were strict about this. They made sure I don’t forget my first language. I was able to become a hospital interpreter thanks to their upbringing. I also feel that language is important since it’s the key to communication, hence I will try to refresh and improve my knowledge of the French language. I would like to study abroad in France later on in my life.
I love nature- the breath of autumn’s crisp air, the fleeting purity seeping through my fingertips, the velvet touches of blossoming flowers and the warm summer night air. Simple things can delight me greatly. I don’t need the grandeur of life; I just need the feeling of warmth, the shivers of excitement, and the rush of a thriving life. The stars shine brighter than the city lights and dawn’s rays reflected on the lake has a greater capacity for beauty than the window panes reflecting gold.
Ever since I was a child, I have always associated escape with going to the park but as the years went by, the parks have became incorporated into my definition of home. There was a sense of thrill in playing on the swings- the ribbon of cold metal pressed against the skin of my heated palm, my feet scraping the floor of concrete and the brisk autumn hair leaving me breathless. Those moments were the closest we can ever get to flying. Back then my goals were just set on mastering the monkey bars, reaching the end without falling down. Even if I do fall down, the pain is just skinned knees. We were still encased in our bubble of fantasies that secures us against what’s to come. We tried to reach great heights, standing up on the monkey bars, building momentum on the swings, trying to touch the endless sky. However now, even though sometimes I go on the swings, I would just idly scrape my feet on the floor. The frivolity of childhood is gone. I take a walk to the nearby park, go on walks, clean up parks or practice tennis whenever I feel stressed or hopelessly confused. I feel less bottled up in the open air. I would sit on the wooden benches and write occasionally or draw. I gather inspiration from nature. Staring up at the clouds, it reminds us of how insignificant we are, but our dreams are like an open canvas that illustrates our individual importance. The park is a tangible fragment of our memories. Every time I go to the park, I feel like I’m discovering the me that is lost in the towering buildings, skyscrapers of priorities.
I try hard in school, working my way up the ladder to success, but I don’t want to measure success by how much I achieved. I don’t want to lose my identity and enslave myself to a path already carved for me. I will never forget my priorities but most importantly I will not forget who I am. In Midwood I am a diligent student who strives to balance advanced placement classes, SAT prep and college apps but outside of Midwood, I am Carrie a girl with dreams greater than an outstretched hand. Within me is an insatiable thirst to chase after my dreams, the desire to feel the chase rushing through the course of my veins and hear my heart beat erratically against paper thin skin. My dream is to be the best that I can be. I don’t need to be a CEO, whose office is on the highest floor of a building. I want to be a doctor. It’s not about the pay. It’s the act of helping those around us. I know what my passion, my duties are in this world are, but I also know that I will never forget the real me that is not weighed by status or wealth.