Prompt: Some students have a background or story that is so central to their identity that they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, then please share your story.
Life Changing Journey
It was a Monday night when I embarked into a journey I would never imagine it would change my life so significantly. While having the last look at my family, waving goodbye at me, I felt butterflies spreading throughout all my body. It was a mixture of fear and excitement that made me wonder everything that could happen, from good to bad; I was leaving everything I knew behind to experience the unknown.
In my junior year, I moved to California to live in my aunt, in a three bedrooms and half house, with her family- her husband, and two little kids and she was pregnant of three months- I was the one that had the non-privacy half bedroom, actually it was more like a extension of the hallway with a door that end up at the garage. It was a tiny but well located house, right at the beach and five minutes away from a commerce complex that had everything I could need.
The first weeks were a completely nightmare, totally different from my expectations. I haven't moved city or school since I was five, and making conversation with strangers was never my strength. I felt vulnerable, I felt like people didn't liked me, but the truth is that people were actually very nice and friendly and I was the one the pushed them away. Instead of embracing the many opportunities that surrounded me I was too busy making myself the victim and dramatizing the whole situation, making it hard for the situation to ever change.
After about a month when I finally stopped creating things in my head, I started to open my eyes to my surroundings. Once I started wanting to make friends it was just as easy as saying hi. Week by week I found myself discovering new friends, new places, new things to do; I opened my mind and started to explore and try to take the most of this experience. I made friends from all over the world, getting in touch with a variety of cultures; explored every corner of the San Francisco bay area, no matter what I would find a way to get everywhere; and solve problems with school documents in the embassy all by myself. I finally felt the freedom I have always wanted back when I lived in a dangerous country. I was independent and did not relay on anyone to anything; I had accomplished my goal of opening my mind to new things and went beyond I could ever imagine.
Today I compare myself to who I was back then in that airport with all the excitement and fear before embarking, and I can sincerely say that I could never be the person I am today without the ups and downs of this life changing journey. Every moment I learned something new, which enriched my life, without even noticing. It was with the loneliness that I learned how to communicate with people around me; it was by getting denied a ride from my family that I learned how to plan the time and how I am going to get somewhere; it was by having to deal with my money and my documents that I learned to be responsible; it was by having no one to take care of me that I learned to take care of myself and be independent. In that case, all the downs, the moments that made me want to give up, were actually the most beneficial of all.