10.05.2009

The Storyteller

Every person has a story. In fact, those are usually the best stories: our own. We can even look to great literature and see that the books held in highest esteem are often reflected on the author’s own life, like Conrad’s “Heart of Darkness” or Joyce’s “Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man.” Maybe we like to pretend – perhaps even the great authors like to pretend - that the best stories we imagine and write are escapes from our own lives, but they aren’t. Our life is always our inspiration, is always our influence, because that is what we know best. For it is not someone else’s story or life that teaches us to express loving and dying, but our own.

So this is my story.

I was homeschooled. In a way, that one sentence explains everything. People always ask me how homeschooling was, and I always reply that it depends on your parents: it’s true.

My first disappointment with homeschooling came when I was about six. I knew I was going to be a ballerina when I grew up. I was practically made to wear pink tutus and dance everyday. Unfortunately, my parents didn't share the same view, and decided I should quit ballet after a year because it took too much time away from homeschooling.

Then I started up soccer and, consequently, I fell in love with it. I liked getting out of the house, being a part of a team, and just running with the ball at my feet. It’s kind of hard to explain how much passion you can have for something that isn’t a person, but to me, soccer was more than just a hobby. However, after a few years, I had to quit that too.

Then things became worse. My parents would have my younger sister and I work on our studies throughout our weekends and summers. I would be threatened that if I didn’t do my schoolwork, I couldn’t have dinner. I couldn’t lock my door, or it might be removed, and I couldn’t go to the library because I might check out a bad book. Plus, my Dad would unfortunately often yell at me when he was upset about anything, because I was the only person in the family who would stand up to him.

But the worst part was when I became serious about ice-skating. I had started it even before ballet, and I had a natural talent in it. My teachers wanted me to compete, and as for me, there wasn’t anything I liked better than the sound of ice scraping beneath my feet - it was the closest thing to flying for me. I bought professional ice-skates and practiced for hours each week – plus it was the only time I saw my friends and had a break from studies. But then, my parents decided that that had to go too, and that broke my heart in a way.

I was suddenly stuck in the house for weeks on end and I realized that my parents had taken away everything from me that had actually kept me working on my studies: my friends, my passions, even my cd player. They couldn’t take anything more away from me, and studying more wasn’t working. So, I quit. I stopped studying, I stopped eating as much, I stopped looking forward to the next day.

After a while, my Mom became worried about me and decided to enroll me into my community college and signed me up for taekwondo. And, well, I came alive again. I got my black belt, and I received several awards at college for my almost 4.0 GPA and my involvement in social live. I became a sort of social butterfly, and was invited into top societies and clubs.

Then, earlier this year, I ran into more trouble, which is why I took a break from this blog. I wanted to transfer to a better school, and my advisor told me that I shouldn’t have a problem doing so – in fact, since I had been homeschooled, I didn’t even need to take the GED (to get a high school diploma) or the SATs. But then, a month later, he changed his mind. So suddenly, I had to take the next SAT available with two weeks to prepare. I had to take the GED too, and with the SAT and five college classes, I had only the night before to study. But I ended up receiving above average grades on the SAT, and on the GED, I received extremely high grades even though I had never finished 9th grade.

Then I was left with about a week to write my college essays, when most people have months, and there was a chance I might not make the deadlines. However, in the end, before I was even accepted, I actually received an e-mail from an admission’s office with praise for my essay, which is apparently unheard of. In the end, I decided to go to University of Virginia. It kind of amazes me that I went from practically no high school education and some community college, to going to one of the top national universities and just about the best public university in the country.

Of course the hardest part, has been forgiving my parents. They taught me so much: not only that the people you love are the ones who can hurt you the most, but also that the people you truly love, you can never completely hate. And I love them, and I know they love me, and perhaps that’s all I need to know to forgive them in the end.

So maybe I’m just naturally smart and lucky. Maybe those years of homeschooling really did prove their worth. But I know that’s not it – it’s that I chose what I wanted and went for it. There wasn’t a day when I didn’t want to give up, but I realized that I shouldn’t let my situation determine my life. Sometimes we just have to realize what we want and go after it and get it because we might not get another chance. And, more importantly, we’ve got to be so stubborn that people’s opinions don’t sway us – and realize that for every will there really is a way.

So this is my story, told to you. Because, after all, if a story isn't told, then it ceases to exist.


(feel free to comment!)

19 comments:

Cursed♪♫ said...

oh my god!
where had you disappeared?
glad you're back!!

Prince Trase said...

What a passionate story! I'm glad your back! High fives all around!

Tunafish said...

Thanks for the comment =) Glad you're back. I vaguely remember liking your blog so yeah. Keep living for Christ =) Jesus loves you!

jEeRo said...

glad you are back..been waiting for quite awhile..how are you gal?..

its not easy(at least for some-one like me)to write about your own personal life..it does take alot of courage..to share..

yes its true..when you have the will..you can endure almost anything...

im just happy you are back..thkx for your sweet comment =]..hope to hear from you ya..

smile..

cait said...

thanks so much for the note. glad you're back. all the best to the future.

•¦Amy¦• said...

Welcome back dear! I've missed your posts like no other. I am on a blogging break right now...but I will be sure to stop by as often as I can.

This post hit close to home for me. I was (actually still am) home schooled as well though not many people in the blogging world are aware of this, as I don't find much reason to talk about it. I considder my experiences just the same as anyone who is enrolled in a public of private school maybe even broader.
We started when I was in the fourth grade due to my ballet training. I guess my experience has been a bit of the opposite of yours, we needed the flexibility of home-schooling so that I could pursue my dream of becoming a dancer.
I've been blessed enough to meet many people of many different walks of life through the activities my parents have put me in, but the people that stand out the most to me are my fellow home-schoolers. Everyone has a completely different story, is so unique, has had their own experiences, started for their own reasons, etc. It's so interesting finding out how it's effected the kids, and you're so right it all depends on the parents, and I'm so blessed to have been given the ones I have. They may not be perfect, but no one is and they've sacrificed so much for me and for my brother.

Congratulations on entrance to major university! Sometimes we have to get to our destination to make sense of what's happened in our lives, hopefully things are clear to you and you are happy with the outcome. :)

Welcome back!

-Amy

Okie said...

Welcome back...excellent update on a roller coaster of a summer...a roller coaster that has built up over life.

Your writing is very fluid and entertaining. This is a great opening page/chapter to start your memoirs. ;)

simpleman said...

of course I remember you! Glad to have you back here, I was away for a long time as well.

Yerika Reyes said...

Of course i remember you!haha i half am back from my vacation as well...well sort of :P
:)
Good post btw :)

Stray Cat said...

Fantastic writing. Sounds like you are on a rewarding journey/path. Forgiving others and ourselves is on my top ten list of important lessons to learn and do. Take care!

Dave said...

Blessed and gifted...not lucky..you are blessed and gifted..thank you for your prayers. I've certainly need them I've felt lost, swimming in this sea of life trying to keep my head above water.

One Small Voice said...

I am so glad you're back! Great post, beautiful story...as usual! I'm praying for you!

Earth-ling said...

great story, I enjoyed reading it.
im glad you shared it!

husna2912 said...

I had never left a comment in your posts before. But, I have always been reading your blog as it gave me inspiration and the motivation to move on when i feel pretty down.

another reason to follow up to your post is because I love the way you make up your sentences, i only wish i could write as well as you.

Jill said...

What a powerful story... Glad you are back!

Lane923 said...

Thanks for the post comment! Sounds like a busy life for you right now - I definitely can sympathize with you =) Find rest in Christ alone!

Rafé said...

wow!
now this was pretty awesome!
It's great to hear such a story, but then I realize I'm talking to someone that luck has claimed as their own.

I would say good luck or even congratulations to you but that doesn't seem to live up to your accomplishments. Good to have you back.

Kia said...

Congrats on U of Virginia! You must be so relieved that all the college applications and stress of getting in is over. I'm gong through that right now, and it is definitely wearing on my mind. Hopefully, it all turns out well.

shidorys-ai-neko-world said...

wow amaizing!!! I have tons of things to say but I don't know how to begin, so I just can say amaizing!!