To Stand the Pain, To Be Strong

Yining - Bloomfield Hills, Mississippi
Entered on June 5, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30
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She came with two red eyes. Then she leaned on my shoulder and could not prevent herself from crying. I asked her what happened. She told me, “I want to go home.” It had been more than seven months since we came here. I wiped her tears, smiled at her, and said nothing.

To be international students away from our hometowns is painful, but I believe that it is a journey to make us strong, independent and mature.

Living in a new environment is a challenge for me. At the beginning of school, I felt embarrassed to talk to people because I was afraid that people would laugh at my poor English. I studied in my room all the time; however, the bad grades drove me crazy. I started making friends; they told me better ways to study. Fortunately, my grades became better with the helps of my friends and teachers. My life started changing from black and white to colors. It is hard to say the first word, but just one word will make our lives different.

One day I got sick; I vomited all day long. In my bed, I fell into a light sleep; in my dream, my mom was taking care of me, and she gave me medicine and delicious porridge; my dad was walking around my bed, worried about me. At that moment, I smiled; however, a strong feeling of needing to heave woke me up. I ran to the bathroom and puked again. I looked around my dark room; my roommate’s eyes told me that she wanted to help, but she did not know how. From that day, I told myself I had to take care of myself. I was not a little child who is always waiting for parents’ help anymore. I have to be independent in this new environment.

One day when I was on the bus with my friend, she told me, “My sister got into a car accident, she is having a surgery now, I …” she stopped. She forced herself to smile at me while my face was covered by tears. I could tell that how worried she was through her wet eyes; however, she knew that tears could not change anything and we had to stand all the pain by ourselves.

We will never know how much we will miss our homes until we are so far away from home; we will never know what we have to handle until we live without our parents; we will never know how independent we can be until we come to America.

When I heard the sounds of fireworks and people cheering through the telephone, it sounded so close that I could almost feel it, but I could not touch it. I put down the telephone; it was snowing outside; everything was so silent and lonely. Then I opened CranNet and started doing my homework on the First Spring Festival that I spent in America. That night, my teacher took us to the Chinese restaurant to celebrate the Chinese New Year. As I watched the dragon dance, I clapped my hands and smiled at my friends and teachers. At that moment, I realized that I could not live in the pain forever; I had to surpass it and lived my new life. I looked at my teachers and my friends, who did care about me and loved me. My life is not with sorrow, but with happiness.