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Obstacles are an everyday occurrence in life; obstacle or conflict in your life

madisongreen 2 / 8  
Aug 27, 2013   #1
PROMPT: Describe a circumstance, obstacle, or conflict in your life, and the skills and resources you used to resolve it. Did it change you? If so, how?

Obstacles are an everyday occurrence in life. Some are small causing short lived distress while others seem to shake us to our very core. I have had my share of problems both large and small and I have found that the most difficult obstacle I have overcome to be my father.

He and my mother divorced when I was 2 years old. My father wasn't truly present in my life until he decided to move to Texas when I was eight, resulting in much more frequent visitation. The abrupt lifestyle change left me worried, not only because of the new presence in my life but because my father had decided to take residence in a fairly large back room of a flower shop to save money for a house. There was no kitchen, bedroom, shower, or heater. Half of the room was occupied by his carpentry supplies, so the little space left available was tightly situated to accommodate a couch, two beds, a television, and a table with chairs. The room was dark because of the dark green walls and the absence of windows. There was an aura of coldness about it, accentuated by the chill of the concrete floor. The thought of having to live in this environment troubled me greatly. I was not accustomed to a lifestyle outside of my home with my mother, much less a lifestyle that lacked so many of the amenities that I felt were necessities. On top of these living conditions, a new religion (Mormonism) was imposed on me. I was not allowed to practice my faith and attend a Catholic service while I was with him. Instead I was forced to attend his church. All of these abrupt lifestyle changes I encountered upon my father's arrival scared me. I felt like I had to be two different people because of the huge difference between these two lifestyles. Rather than allowing this new circumstance to spiral my life out of control, I decided that I was not going to let it get in the way of my goals for the future.

The decision I made nine years ago remains today and my outlook has changed on the whole situation tremendously. One thing that hasn't changed are the conditions my father lives in. Thus far the promises of house have not been met and they may never be, and I have accepted that. I have accepted all of the hardships that I have experienced with my father and I have no animosity towards him. Instead I am thankful, because I have learned so much through this experience. It has taught me humility and sacrifice. I now know the steps he has taken to get to this point in his life so I am better able to avoid going down that same path. I've learned that you can't force anyone to change. I've learned forgiveness. And I've learned that the past doesn't define anyone, including myself.

I am now seventeen and I am sharing my final year with my father before I go to college, and I find myself reflecting on the many years we have spent together. It wasn't all bad, and I have plenty of fond memories to look back on. But I also have memories of discomfort and pain. Through it all I think I have become a better person, through the good and the bad. I have now changed my mission from making sure that this experience doesn't get in the way of my goals to using this experience and the lessons I have learned to help me in reaching my goals for the future.

I know that the intro isn't good. I couldn't think of anything good initially and just decided to jump into the body. Sorry for any spelling errors and I would really appreciate and input you may have.

sarthakjain 19 / 58  
Aug 28, 2013   #2
The essay is good, but I have a concern that the question asked how did you resolve it. Your essay describes the situation in great detail and what you learned from it, but it lacks in the resolving part - where you mentioned that you accepted the changes and decided not to let them affect your goals. I think that part needs a little more explanation.

Hope this helps.
OP madisongreen 2 / 8  
Aug 28, 2013   #3
Thanks for that suggestion. I kinda thought the same thing but this is just my first draft so I thought I would see if anyone agreed with me just to be sure.
thisweirdkid 2 / 10 1  
Aug 29, 2013   #4
I see a few errors in the essay that'll need a fresh touch.

"I have found the most difficult obstacle I have overcome to be my father."

Are you implying that your father was the biggest obstacle that you've overcome?

I think that sentence'll sound a little more precise if it's written like this. "The relation that my father I shared would be the biggest obstacle I've ever had to come across till this date."

Also you could use, "My father's sudden appearance when I was eight years old changed the course of my life resulting in life style changes that were sudden and hard to adjust to."

"One thing that hasn't changed are"... I might be wrong but I think it's incorrect. I would use 'is' instead of 'are'.

Also, I want to mention something. Your father sounds so much like my father. My mother's always been the one who's kept the family together. My parents aren't estranged but we're walking on thin ice. My father too was absent during the times when my family needed him the most. You should email me, we should talk about the the importance of a father in a child's life. Haha

I can relate to this essay and I'm touched by what you've written. But, there's always room for improvement. So yeah, think about the things I've mentioned above
OP madisongreen 2 / 8  
Aug 29, 2013   #5
Thanks so much for your input. Yeah my biggest problems generally lie within the phrasing of certain things. I'm glad you liked it. I tried really hard to not cast my dad in a terrible evil light, but still maintain the honest problem it has been for me. I'm sorry I marked so many things on your essay, because I really liked. I guess its just what popped into my head. I mean who would have ever thought of comparing themselves to a coconut! Genius!

Also if you ever do want to talk a about father stuff my email is maddiegrn. I've always beien interested in other people's perspectives on situations like ours, I guess because I really haven't talked about it before writing this essay.

(I'm a fan of Harry Potter too :).)
thisweirdkid 2 / 10 1  
Aug 29, 2013   #6
Sounds like we could be good friends. I'll email you soon. And thanks for appreciating my essay. I guess reading all those Enid Blyton novels as kid did pay off. HP is just amazing. Almost everyone I know love HP.
nessa219 1 / 2  
Sep 3, 2013   #7
I think your essay is good and needs a little more detail in the intro making the reader want to keep reading the rest of your essay. I hope you have the best time with your father and bond with each other more! :)

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