Today, the fruits of her labor have been replaced with the suction of her vacuum.
For Christmas, my father gives me a sparkling blue stone he found in the arroyo. Its elite, insider status makes it a top contender for your home library or college counseling office. They became her first client, and their house became the bedrock of our sustenance. Foaming at the mouth, I was ready to pass out.
The gap between full-scholarship and full-pay felt insurmountable. I balance on the edge of drought. It impressed on me a sort of social capital that I knew could be used in America.
That night when my brother was gone I went to a local store and bought a piece of chocolate taffy, his favorite. They were rarely ever home, so I saw their remnants: the lightly crinkled New York Times sprawled on the kitchen table, the overturned, half-opened books in their overflowing personal library, the TV consistently left on the National Geographic channel. I rummaged through the house, keeping a wary eye on my cat. Our sole aim is to keep moving.
Each was paper-thin and seemingly weightless. When I speak with people in their native language, I find I can connect with them on a more intimate level.
My first week at Andover, dazed by its glamour and newness, I fought my way to the financial aid office to pick up the laptop; I sent my mom a photo of me grinning and clutching the cardboard box.
I exist at the epicenter of political discourse. I was the king of bowling, and Dawn was the queen of tennis. The act of conserving money, the audacity to solve problems no one has thought of before is what set my family apart.
And, it answers plenty of questions you might not have thought of.
In the eighth grade, I became fascinated with Spanish and aware of its similarities with English through cognates. Then, in high school, I developed an enthusiasm for Chinese. After I finished the exchange student program, I had the option of returning to Korea but I decided to stay in America. An excellent source of ideas for polishing your written college applications. The kids always had something warm to eat, and were always on their best behavior at home and in school.
I wanted to go to my bedroom, confine myself to tears, replay my memories, never come out.