By Jose Lopez
Dreams change once anybody puts their feet in the United States because things
seem not to be the same as was thought. And that is what happened to me.
When I heard I was coming to the U.S. I was excited because of the way I thought
the U.S. was – colorful, easy living, good accommodations, and nice places
as is shown in the movies. I thought it would be easy for me. When I arrived,
everything looked great to me. I never had flown before and the cities looked
fantastic to me even though I did not know how life would be.
My principal goals before coming to U.S. were just coming here to work. I wanted
to make money until I felt wealthy and then go back to my country. I wanted to
buy my own house with good accommodations and have my own business of something
(like a store). Four months after arriving, I started to work and did not go
to school. It was a little hard because I had to do things that I hadn’t
done in my country. My first job was cleaning offices. It was part-time but the
money I made was good for me. At that time my parents were supporting me. Suddenly
I heard they wanted to send me to high school.
Things seemed different when I knew my parents wanted to send my to high school
because my goals were changing. Sometimes I felt a struggle to make a good decision
because I did not want to come to school. When I had one year of living in this
country, things started to change. I didn’t get along with my parents because
they did not understand me. There wasn’t support anymore. There were fights.
As a result my mind started to change in a different manner. I had to support
myself, but kept coming to school. Thinking of graduating from high school became
my purpose, but it was hard because I had to support myself. There was not much
time to do all my things like homework and other activities.
What did I want to do? Earn money for college? And think of going back to your
country? But things are difficult to arrange because it is not easy when you
live by yourself and make your own money. Learning English was one factor that
changed my thoughts. Speaking English made me feel like I belonged to this country
even if I wasn’t born here. English helped me know different people; with
English I could get better jobs and do well in life.
In order to do this I still have to finish my education first, but it’s
hard and sad because my parents don’t support me. I have to work and get
home late at night home, then do my homework, study and get to bed late to sleep
for a few hours and come to school. After school go to work again. It makes me
feel exhausted and sometimes depressed. Depression sometimes makes me think about
quitting school and just working. But I realize that I need to finish school.
During my first two years of high school I was doing well. I had good grades
and I was successful in all my classes. Now that I have had almost three years
of being in this country, working and coming to school at the same time make
me feel tires and all my dreams want to disappear. I am in 12th grade and because
of feeling lonely with nobody helping and guiding me, it depresses me. My grades
are looking very bad and my GPA is very low. It seems to be like I won’t
graduate. But the only the only choice I have is to try hard to pass all my classes
and keep firmly with my goals. I want to go to college and keep doing well to
get better things in my life. But now I don’t know if I can make that dream