The car rumbled down the street with a flat tire and its lights worn out, just enough to pitch a light through the dark perils of the night. The screeching muffler pounding the street drew sirens that awakened the neighbors. The car kept pushing to reach its destination despite its condition. The car not only wanted to reach a safe place to call home, but by not giving up it wanted to set an example for those who felt helpless. Without knowing its full potential, it made everyone want to help the driver keep pushing his car. The car made it through the night almost destroyed but it made it through because it never gave up. The car resembled my childhood experience and my present pursuit for happiness.
For as long as I could remember my life has never been perfect. Moving every year from place to place was not easy for me, my mom and my sister. Despite having divorced parents I always saw my dad. He was a man with rocky hands from picking up boxes all day at his job working for Home Goods in the factories, a typical job for those who didn’t speak English. He would always come by and pick me up on the weekends. For some reason my mom could never work and her only income came from my dad’s forty dollar a week child support check and some money she got from the government that she received the 1st and 15th of the month, they were called welfare checks.
My story begins when I was ten years old. I remember walking down the street with my mom, we were headed to the bodega, the jargon Spanish people used to describe the corner store. I saw a man put a needle in his arm and incautiously jerk his head back, as though he had just had the best feeling in the world. I asked my mom what was the man doing and she responded my telling me to hold a bag of groceries. As we began walking back home, she began talking to herself as though she was saying something under her breath. I knew she wanted to tell me something, but she avoided her response. I later learned the guy was a heroin addict shooting himself a fix. The weekends which I spent with my dad were only worse.
I struggled to a find a peaceful place to study and concentrate on my studies. Even though my mom dropped out of high school in the Dominican Republic after her ninth grade year and my dad barely making it through his tenth grade year going only to school on Saturdays, they knew the only way to succeed was to excel in school. I always did the best I could in school and my chess coach, a man who dedicated his life helping kids in Urban cities like Providence, helped me in school and led the way for me to excel in chess by winning numerous state tournaments. I learned through chess to become more patient, to be able to think on my own, and make key decisions that not only helped my game but also my perspectives on life. I knew I came from a poor background and I was never ashamed having to fight through the struggles or even tell someone, because for all I knew every childhood friend around my neighborhood went through the same things. From having to use three blankets at night in the winter because we couldn’t afford heat to dodging gangs recruiting me into their team. It was a nightmare at times but amid the desperate situations I managed to stay out of trouble.
Now a senior in high school, I have goals of owning a business so that I can support my future family and pave the way for those who think they can’t make it, those who were just like me. My dreams of having a successful business comes from the struggles I’ve seen my mom and my dad go through. If I owned a business and managed it properly so that so I could maximize my profits it would make a big difference. I’d make it grow and expand so that I could always support them. Even though I didn’t excel in my studies during my high school years I understand that grades do not define a person, but I am motivated to study, like the rumbling car, I will always keep pushing until I reach my destination.