In the past 10 years, life has been full of surprises, few good and a few bad ones. All these required me to act in different ways. Be more responsive than being reactive. Among these, the two which have had a significant influence in shaping me occurred.
My grandparents fell sick, and needed physical presence of my father. Therefore, my father decided to move back to India. On other hand, my mother was in middle of a crucial project with the company US Airways (AA). Subsequently, I moved to India with my father and my younger brother stayed back with my mother at Phoenix. Since, my father would spend most of his days in juggling between the hospitals at my home town, he decided shift me to my aunt’s house at Hyderabad.
These rearrangements posed inherent challenges for me. The change in school curriculum, different colloquial language, absence of my mother, reduced communication with my younger brother were among the few initial challenges. My aunt did not offer a warm atmosphere for me to adjust and presented a dominating side of her personality and it made it more difficult for me to adjust. She had no patience and refused to listen to me all the time. If I asked her to not play loud music the night before a test, she would say, “This is my house and you cannot question me” and proceed to ground me. I felt as if my voice was taken away from me and the emotional abuse became ingrained in my daily life. Throughout this time, my father was my guarding angel. He would guide me through ways to cope up with the challenges at school front. He taught me how to read and write in ‘Telugu’. He instilled the habit of reading the local Telugu news-paper. By practicing 4 hours a day and walking up an hour early every morning to struggle through reading the newspaper before going to school. Little by little I started to understand more and more of the language and persevered until I got an 81/90 on the Telugu examination.
As the famous Margret Mead said, I learned the value of hard work by working hard.
My school did not have an active basketball team until 2017 On the contrary, it supported the sport cricket much more than any other. In all, there were only five students from my class who played basketball and could represent the school, but the school would not take us to competitions as they used to take them for cricket or hockey. One day I got to know that there was a really big inter school tournament happening, being the captain of the team I insisted the school management to let the School participate in the same. Then immediately I motivated the team that it was our only chance to prove ourselves and show what that we are worth of going to tournaments. With rigorous practice in after school hours, we were able to bag the second place with a cash price of 3000 Rs. This is one of my cherished moments on how I carried the team to victory and earning recognition and respect for the team and basketball as a whole.
At this point my life practically was picture-perfect, I was excelling in my academics: got a 10/10 CGPA in 10th grade and a 96% in 11th Grade, became the captain of the high school team and led the team to many victories and runners up positions and also got selected to represent the city team (5th pick); finally my brother and mother shifted back to India, and we were back to a complete and happy family. From the beginning me and my father always used to talk about how I would go back and do my undergrad in USA, so together we filled the common app profile, decided on which universities to go to, and he also helped in proofreading my essay.
Unfortunately, he couldn’t read the whole essay,
Like a meteoroid which struck our lives, we got a call saying that my father had passed away in an awful tragedy.
It was the biggest setback in my life, I was emotionally broken, morally down, and lost the will to do anything. I didn’t know what to do, we were financially down and my brother was just 10 years old. This also affected my SAT that I had two days after my father had passed away(on Oct 2nd 2018). Even the slightest thought that I couldn’t see my father ever in my life again was devastating.
It was the hardest thing to overcome, but I realized that nothing can change back time and I had to just move on and especially be strong for my mother and brother. Me and my father always dreamed of getting into a really good college and succeed in my life. So my foremost goal is to get into a really good college and succeed and live up to my father’s expectations even though he’s not here to witness it.
I have faced many challenges in my life that not only have shaped me but have also proven that I can persevere and achieved my goals and dreams. I know that I have many hurdles ahead of me, but my life has shown me that I have the ability to face them and come out stronger.