The First Line

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I had worked my entire life for this. A chance at a bright future, at me being the first to succeed in my family was in my hands.

Brown University had been my dream since I could remember. I had seen brochures when my older brother had been looking into colleges. He had never gotten good enough grades to even think about Brown, but he loved the school. Maybe it was his love of the school that first really caught my attention.

The pictures of the campus covered in snow, the prestige gates leading in, and the beautiful old brick buildings made me dream of something more. No one in my family succeeded. My father worked hard at his job but wasn't really going anywhere and my mother stayed at home taking care of us and the house.

I was proud of my parents. They worked hard and cared very much about us and tried to give us everything they could but I wanted more for myself. I wanted to never worry about paying the mortgage of having enough to put dinner on the table. I wanted to be someone so I decided Brown is where I would go.

I worked hard. I studied every night, spent hours on homework, pulled whatever extra credit assignments I could. I was a straight A student and head of my class. I wanted to be well rounded and was class treasurer and played volley ball and lacrosse. With all these thing I didn't have much time for friends and often spent my weekends reading and studying.

I never complained. I knew what the pay off for my sacrifices would be. I had a chance for greatness. My parents worried about me but they knew how determined I was and did what they could to help me achieve my dreams.

When it came time to apply to college I picked out three schools; Yale, Harvard, and of course Brown. I knew that if I got in anywhere else it wouldn't matter. I didn't want to settle for second best, not after all I’d been through.

My teachers wrote stunning recommendations talking about my character and commitment to my education. On the day I sent in my application I felt something strange. I had expected to feel confidence and a little nervous but instead I felt incomplete. It was like I had just sent away for my hopes and dreams and I knew if it didn't work out I would have to deal with all I’d given up.

Days turned to weeks and weeks to months and finally the letter arrived. I stood in my kitchen, home alone, starring at the envelope. I couldn't bring myself to open it. Once it was open everything would be different. Either I’d have a pay off for everything I’d done or else I wouldn't get in and my dreams would be shattered. I knew no matter what after I read the first line of this letter my life would be changed forever.

I turned the envelope over and stuck my finger under the flap. I slowly slid along listening to the sound of it ripping. My heart beat quickened with every movement. Finally the envelope was undone and I took out the letter and read the first line. My life would never be the same.





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