Going through life an individual faces several obstacles that have to be overcome. I have gone through and am still going through a fair share of personal and financial obstacles.
One of the obstacles is overcoming the language barrier which came my way when I first came to the United States. I had finished second grade in Vietnam but I had to enroll in the second grade again in the U.S because my English skills were weak for the US standard. When I started going to school in America, I was immediately put in to an ESL class. I had a lot of difficulty in the learning English in the beginning. However, my ESL teacher was very patient and creative in finding ways to teach me English. The school I was going to had really friendly students. They were very understanding and helpful. Their positive attitudes helped reinforce my learning and pushed me to work harder in learning English.
After three months of living in the U.S., I moved to a different school in Kent, Washington. On the first day of school, I had a positive outlook towards learning in a different place and was excited about meeting new people. However, on the very first day, a group of kids made fun of my English, saying I was a “chink” and that I should go back to my country. I was deeply hurt inside but not a single tear shed from my eyes. When I came home from school that day, I locked myself in the bathroom and cried my eyes out.
Later that night, I talked to my mother about what had happened. She comforted me and said I should not let others bring me down and hinder me from overcoming my obstacles. When I went to school the next day, I ignored the kids that made fun of me. Even though they continued to ridicule my English, I never once again cried over their insults. Their rude remarks and teasing only made me stronger and more devoted to learn English. Every day, I pushed myself harder at learning English. My hard work translated into accomplishments, improvements, and praises from my teacher.
Several years have passed and I have overcome that obstacle. Even though, I still struggle everyday with English grammar, I am no longer afraid of my English speaking skills. I can communicate, understand, and connect with others through English. If I had given up at the time when I encountered the insults, I would not have been able to push through and be where I am at today.
Another obstacle that my parents and I are still trying to overcome is our financial obstacle. My parents’ wages are not enough for me to go to college. Every paycheck is only enough to pay the bills and our debts. My family always feels stressed and feels financially burdened every single day. Money is also the reason why there is tension between my sister and father, creating a rift in our family. Both of my parents’ health have significantly gotten worse over past few years because of the stressing and worrying. My father has high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and back problems. My mother has high cholesterol and vertigo. Even though, we have not been able to overcome our financial obstacle, I am working hard every day to gain higher education and be able to support my family and my future. I want to relive my family off their financial burden once and for all.
My parents have raised me to be a hard-working person and to never give up. I am not the person that will let obstacles get in the way of achieving my goals. The obstacles only make me work harder so that one-day I will be able to achieve my goals and make my parents proud of me.