Nobody can live alone

Rie - Tokyo, Japan
Entered on May 27, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: family
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Nobody can live alone

I remember it was the end of the summer at age of fourteen when I decided to reset my life. The decision was a breakaway: studying in abroad.

Before I left my country to study in the U.S., I was always at home under my parents’ control, which limited my freedom compared to what other teenagers seemed to have. I used to swallow all my emotions and wishes in front of my parents. I often felt as if I were living on my own. My dreams were just simple; going shopping after school, watching movie, and hanging out with my friends until dinner time. I’d never smelled perfumes or make-ups like other friends did, or I could not even follow girls’ talks sometimes. With a sense of isolation, I was growing sick and tired of my dark and monotonous life. I was just like a bird in a cage, and I knew virtually nothing about the outside world. I just wanted to be a “normal” teenage girl. Although I looked older than my age, my knowledge of the world was a pinch. My eagerness of freedom led me to the decision of studying in abroad. I thought I should open the key of a door to new world.

As expected, as soon as I entered the new environment, I gained some of the freedom that I had never tasted before. Life was significantly better and bright, but my timidity always got in the way. My eyes were always looking down on the street, and staring at the foot of others. When I tried to speak up, the words were just stuck deep in the throat. I felt like I was drowned in somewhere that I could never get out. Every hurdle seemed so high, and I was dreadfully scared of speaking my broken English, even a few words of greeting in front of native speakers. Consequently, campus life at the first U.S. school that I attended proved a dismal failure. Independence seemed so far away from me. I needed someone to fill my lonely heart.

One night, during a telephone call from my mother, I vented on her all the emotions and complaints that I carried in my heart. Her voice was in choked with tears. However, her most honest and deepest feelings, which I hardly knew before, convinced me that I would give my all in a final effort to make the most out of the circumstances. Her words were strict, but also included some warmth. At the end of the phone call, she left me with one sentence: “Everything is up to you. But whatever you choose, I will support you.” I faced the real moment to achieve my independence that I had to choose my way on my own. After the telephone call, I was feeling homesick for the first time ever in my life. Her words pushed me to step forward, and I came to know that I have never been alone.

Just one word makes humans happier. Just one cheer makes humans stronger. Without someone’s support, humans are weak. Although there is a huge wall in front of me, I know that I can overcome if there is someone and I’m not alone. Without my parents, I could not have become what I am today. This I believe; nobody can live alone.