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Growing Up With Footsteps

By , Sarawak, Malaysia
Outside the operation theatre, a man was walking back and forth with a nervous pace. All of the sudden, the red light turned green and a doctor walked out from the operation theatre. The doctor told the man that everything is fine and he does not need to worry. On the other side, a lady who just gave birth to a baby was hugging her baby. She had tears and sweat all over her face but she was still smiling happily.

A few years later, on a bright and sunny day, the man and the lady sat under the beach umbrella with a young girl between them. The baby has grown up into a young girl! The girl ran towards the blue sea, the cool breeze was blowing on her face while she ran along the beach. She stopped and closed her eyes. A light smile appeared on her face as if she was having a sweet dream. The man put his arm around his wife and the lady set her head on her husband’s shoulder. They looked at the girl who was running along the beach smilingly.

The scene changed from the peaceful beach to a crowded hall. It was very busy and noisy. Students, teachers and parents were walking all the time in different directions. A student that looked exactly like the young girl was standing in front of the microphone on the stage with a crumbled paper in her hand. Her face and her words were full of mixed expressions; sad, happy, proud, depressed. She gave a bow to the audience once she finished her speech. She took her graduation certificate from the principal and shook hand with him. When she turned around facing the audience again, her mouth turned into a wide smile. The hall was full of applause and cheers. The man and the lady stood up from their chair and clapped for their child who was still standing on the stage. They looked so pleased and proud. Although they were smiling, the wrinkles on their faces can still be seen. Time had left some “gifts” on their beautiful faces as they watched their child grow up. Will the girl see the changes on her parents’ faces? Nobody knows.

It was a raining day, heavy rain poured down all over the little city. A teenage girl was cuddling in her mother’s arm on a comfortable bed. She was the girl who ran along the beach and stood on the stage. She had changed. Her hair was much longer and she looked more mature than before. If there weren’t any tears on her face and bulky eyes, she will look exactly like her mother. Beside her was her Government Standardized Test (UPSR) result. On the paper, wrote “ Bahasa Malaysia – Kertas 2: B”. The lady was patting the teenage girl gently, trying to comfort her. Was it because she did not get straight As in the test, and she is disappointed with herself? From her study desk, it seemed like she had done a lot of preparations and worked very hard for the test. Everyone must have tasted failures in their life, so this would be the teenage girl’s first time to experience failures.

The teenage girl and her family moved to Chengdu, China six months later. In a warm and cozy restaurant, the teenage girl was holding a cake knife in her hand while she blew the candles on a birthday cake. It was her fourteenth birthday. On the other side of the table, her mother was clapping her hands and laughed joyfully. It was the girl’s first time to celebrate her birthday in a different country. She laughed so brightly that you could barely see her small eyes. Wouldn’t it be great to celebrate your birthday with your family in a different country?

The girl in this story had grown up from a baby, to a young girl, to a teenage girl, like most of us. Stop and turn back. Can you see the footsteps of yourself? The size of your footsteps increased as you grow. Can you recall what happened on each footstep as you step on it again? Walk through your footsteps, go back to your past, let your memories play the scenes into movie through your head.




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