Life is beautiful; it never seems to end. It keeps showing its true beauty and power until a change occurs. This change happened to me when I heard I had to leave my native country for a completely new world. One of the biggest experiences I have had was coming to the United States of America. Originally, I thought about only having one home, that is in Gujarat, India, but I never realized that another one was waiting for me here in America. In the beginning, the experience was not positive because I was missing my family and friends back at home in India. As I got used to the new culture and environment, I realized I was fortunate enough to be here in this country and learn things that I have never imagined in my life.
June 4, 1995 was the moment of my life when a whole new identity was formed, my first plane ride coming to America, which felt as if I was being reborn. From that day forward, the life of my family as well as my own changed dramatically. Everything would have seemed strange and difficult if it was not for the help of my parents. They supported me throughout the whole time helping me understand how this can be a new beginning for me. It felt like my whole way of living stood out – the way I dressed, spoke, and the religion I followed.
When I was about to quit on life, suddenly, I started finding my true self. Giving up on life was not the solution to my problems, but I encountered every problem I faced. I remember what my mother used to tell me: “Always try to understand everyone and everything, this way you can be familiar with part of life.” She said it with such a great understanding. I became familiar with this new part of my life here in America. Finally, I started to become proud of myself as I started up the ladder of my new life. My parents always told me not to forget who you are just because you live in a different country. By remembering their advice, I turned out to be a fine Indian girl, which makes them very proud of me.
The real change came, however, when I started school in America. As I worked through grammar school and high school, I acknowledged more and more new things in life. Being the only Indian in grammar school was really tough. Communication and problem solving tasks were really harder than I thought. I took ESL classes to make my understanding better and presentable to others. The teachers were thoughtful and were always there to assist me. Slowly, I became more familiar with the environment and learned to communicate where I was able to feel proud of myself.
Moreover, the more experiences I had helped me to achieve higher goals in high school. High school seemed most diverse and challenging of all. This is the place where I felt as if I was being tested all over again. Unlike grammar school, high school was huge having more than a thousand students. I was scared in the beginning feeling that I would not fit in with my peers. Without any help from the teachers or having ESL classes, I started helping myself with the new environments and making adjustments.
I made new friends and joined different clubs. I felt more comfortable afterwards knowing that I was very a group-oriented person. I participated in many extra curricular activities and most important of all I was an honor student in the Technology Magnet Program. This made my parents as well as me very proud that I was able to achieve the goal that I never thought was possible. By the time of my high school graduation, I was able to accomplish any problem solving tasks and I was well rounded in all areas.
Last, but not least, being in college is the best experience of all. This is the place where I can expose myself to new opportunities and be a part of a competitive world. The first year of college has taught me a lot. I feel more confident and secure about the new place. I began to discover my true identity and my future goals.
Throughout my experience, I have had many positive as well as negative incidents. Leaving my country to come to the United States was rough, but I managed to become successful at every task I performed. However, in the beginning, I did not have faith in myself knowing that I was far away from my relatives and friends. As time passed by, I realized that I am very fortunate to be here in a wonderful country where I can expand my knowledge. “I still find each day too short for all the thoughts I want to think, all the walks I want to take, all the books I want read, and all the friends I want to see.” This quote by John Burroughs expresses how I feel about my life and all the experiences I have been through.