Do you speak?

Flipping through the pages I realized I didn’t know how to write, read, or speak English I was raised in Mexico and lived there for ten years, at the age of sixteen I traveled to Ontario California where I continued my education. I entered school my junior year of highschool I felt like I didn’t fit anywhere all the students were getting their things together deciding what college to attend the majority of them had everything ready for their future. I would go to school every day, yet there was no point because I didn’t understood anything whenever someone tried to have a conversation with me I would nod or shake my head to agree with them because that was the only way I would get away with no questions asked, yet as the time passed I notice that I was learning more and more things and that little by little I was able to understand more English, so I decided, to keep reading more books to help me with words, pronunciation, and grammar,and to start talking to more fluent English speakers and this is how my English gets better every day.

Something really helpful was reading books. A great resource I made a good use of was books, articles, and magazines. Whenever I open a book I feel so proud of myself because it takes me back to my first test in high school. I was in my ELD class when the teacher told us to stand up and go to the cafeteria to take the exit examination. We walked into the cafeteria it was a big white room with no windows just a big clock hanging from the wall. A bunch of other people were already seated I sat down right away, they asked for my name and handed my test after a few minutes they started reading directions and scared us to death with all the consequences of cheating. I opened my test flip and flip and flip the pages trying to find something easy to do I kept “reading” and reading, but as much as I tried to find something I couldn’t I didn’t understood anything in the test I went to the math section and it was even worst I looked at the answered sheet and it was about a hundred and fifty questions in total. I started looking around to see if I was the only one lost and out of place trying not to feel so lonely, but no matter where I looked everyone was too concentrated reading, writing, or bubbling in the answer sheet. No matter what section of the test I went to I couldn’t answered any questions because I didn’t understood the task. I looked at the white walls for hours like if they were going to give me the answers the big clock hanging from the wall kept reminding me that at any given time I had to turned in my blanked test, Could anything go worst than this? I started randomly bubbling in all the answer sheet, which wasn’t a good idea because I probably answered more questions than the test had. I got up and hand in my test once I stepped outside I felt free and a great relief I knew I had to pass the test to graduate high school, so I looked for more resources around me.

Most of the people that surrounded myself in high school were spanish speakers specially because of my ELD class for support to help me learn English, but it did the opposite all my classmates were mexicans, vietnamese, chinese, guatemalans, or form the middle east so we would all hang out with the people from our same country which didn’t helped us at all. I decided to take a step forward and start exposing myself a little more by meeting new people and making more friends who were fluent English speaker. I was terrified in the beginning because I felt no one was going to understand my accent or I wasn’t going to understand what they were saying I remember one day in highschool I was on my way to class walking through the hallway when a teacher comes out of his classroom he looks at me and says, “hey, how’s your day going?”somehow I panic and nod my head saying yeah yeah minutes later I realized what he actually said. I had a hard time understanding people when they spoke to me I would ask them to repeat themselves multiple times and I had to listen and pay careful attention to make sure I didn’t miss anything. This went on for a while but thanks to this now I have a better understanding and comprehension of the language and I feel proud of myself for all the self encouragement and positivity because after a year of hanging around with new friends who were frequently speaking the language to me I learned how to pronounce things the right way I would paying attention to their pronunciation and then repeat the same word multiple times. I can finally say I am now able to have a conversations with people and communicate with others I also retook the exit examination the a year after and I was surprised to see I was able to go through the whole test and answered each question. I got my result later on in the semester and pass the test with a good score I graduate with the rest of my class and continued my education.

Sometimes we don’t have a lot of support at home or from family member, other times we’re missing educated people around us, but It doesn’t matter because where there’s a will there’s a way. Self motivation and encouragement is what  you need to achieve your goals. Also don’t take for granted the support from teachers who often have so much to offer. I am a college student today for all the great support from teachers and myself  I am so proud of all my accomplishments, even though fear almost took that away from me I didn’t give up, so don’t let your fear take over always follow your dreams because at the end everything will be worth it.