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My desires became my fuel. Common App essay (Any topic)

mzou335 1 / -  
Nov 1, 2021   #1

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My desires became my fuel. The summer before ninth grade, my parents sold our house. As my feet dragged across my room while packing boxes, I reminisced about all the things I would miss most. Goodbye to the kitchen that helped create my favorite meals. Goodbye to the school where I met my dearest friends. Goodbye to my home. As much as I never wanted to believe it, life was going to move on with or without me. That first became clear to me when my grandma was diagnosed with liver cancer. At full tilt, I scoured the house, scanning for anything belonging to me with some form of value. As I finished gathering my items, I shoved them into my favorite Barbie backpack and went to bed. The following morning, cloudy skies showered down with rain. Following class time, the recess bell finally rang. I took a grasp onto my backpack and ran into the hallway. Since the gloomy weather had no intention of disappearing, recess was indoor. With my backpack in between my legs, I unzipped it and took out my box. I made my rounds to all the kids in the hallway. One by one, I took my items out and sought to sell them. There I was as a fifth-grader, attempting to bargain with her classmates selling her favorite toys. What was the purpose of it? Desire. The desire to help. I was content with every dollar I had made. It seemed like I was finally doing something beneficial. I knew that if I sat around and wailed day and night, it would not change the fact that the world was taking away someone I held so close to my heart. If time was to keep moving forward, so was I. And so, as I took my first steps into high school, I held my head high. With my parents being immigrants, our family ran on a desire for a better future like the American dream, and education seemed to be the key. As a witness to all their hard work and heartaches, I craved a better future for them, just as they worked tirelessly towards giving me what they never had. I was the eldest of three, so while my parents toiled away at the family restaurant, I would stay home and care for my siblings. Having that role in my family taught me leadership. The environment and standards I grew up with were far from similar to my new classmates, so moving to a predominantly white high school as an Asian American was nothing short of interesting. Before moving, I attended an extremely diverse school. Blonde hair and blue eyes were not the standards. Through my attempts to adjust at my new school, I experienced a substantial amount of culture shock. I began to believe I had to fit into a blonde and blue standard. I slowly became unfamiliar with who I was. Thankfully, I realized that my black hair would always be black regardless of the hair dye, and my eyes would always be brown despite the contacts I used. I yearned to look in the mirror and recognize the reflection. The shift in my environment opened my eyes. I understood that a feeling of belonging or welcomeness is not always a given. If I wanted to create change, I'd be in charge of making it. Continuing to move forward with the world, I began to appreciate what this move had given to me. I gained another eye, another perspective. My persona is what it is today because of this move. The naive girl with a closed mind was enlightened. I move along with life and keep opening myself to more perspectives. Today and every day forward, I plan to embrace new views through different lenses, using my desire for growth and change in the world to fuel my next move.

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