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Glimpse of my life in a few minutes
Finally, I finished my homework. I got up, turned around, and headed out the door of my bedroom. I found my dad in the living room, sitting in our swivel chair, on one of his two desktop computers. On one tab of Google Chrome, he was on CNN, while the other tab indicates he was on Google Translater. That’s when I spoke up, “Dad, can I join the school’s ultimate frisbee team?” My hope lingered for a few seconds. But then my hope melted away, all of a sudden, I can feel my heart beating, without touching my chest, as I watched him slowly pivot his chair to face me, knowing that the answer will be my fate.
“No, you are not joining the frisbee team.” At this moment I knew their was no point arguing, my anger was already rising, but I decided to carry on with the calmest voice I can manage.
“Why can’t I join the frisbee team?” I asked.
“Because you need to prepare for the SHSAT,” said my dad.
“But can’t I study once I come home from after school? Also, we don’t have practice or a frisbee game everyday.”
“But,” my dad interrupted, “when you do have practice, that wastes precious time, and when you have a game to play, that wastes even more time.”
“You don’t expect me stay in the house after school and on the weekends every single day just to study for a high school admissions test, do you?” I protested.
He hesitated, then said, “ I don’t want you getting hurt.”
“Come on, dad. You never said any of this when my elementary school PE teacher selected me to go to a track and field event in Randall’s Island when I was in third grade.”
” “That was just a bunch of sprinting and jumping, but this is a whole bunch of kids competing to catch a flying frisbee,” said my dad.
“But I played a game of ultimate frisbee in PE with my classmates before, it went fine,” I said.
“This is different,” he said, “ this time you go against kids you don’t know from other schools.” I thought about saying “please” but I found out a long time ago it doesn’t work for my dad. I know when my dad makes a decision, he has reason for it. Once he makes his decision, there’s no changing his mind.
“I’m sorry, you are not joining the frisbee team,” my dad said, with a not so sorry voice, a voice that is empty of emotion, a voice that I hear almost everyday. At this point, I knew, my anger is beyond what I can handle, but always, I have to hold it back, I knew, that if I say something, I will make the situation even worse, I knew, that it is the end of the conversation.
As I walked back to the room, I thought to myself, when was the last time he said sorry to me, probably never. I sat back down on my chair, looking down at my desk, I see the cover of one of my many SHSAT workbooks. I recall the conversation with me and the PE teacher, just earlier today. It feels like I am watching us two talking, somewhere in the backgrounds..
“Philip,” the PE teacher asked, “why don’t you ask your father to let you join the team?”
I responded, “It’s no use, he probably won’t let me join.”
“Why?” he asked.
“Because I have to study,” I said.
“Do you not finish your homework?”
“No, I just have to study for a high school admissions test.”
I also remember what Mathias said to me just two days ago.
“Philip, we need you.” I can see the seriousness on his face, but I think I heard a bit of pleading in his voice.
“I know, Mathias,” I said. I sighed, I wish I could do something about it. But my dad said no, so I can’t. I guess sometimes you can’t get what you want in life. You just have to deal with what you have and try to make the best of it.