To new beginnings

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Remembering all the difficult challenges that I have had in my life make the new ones feel easier for me. I believe that every challenge can have a positive outcome and that not all challenges end with a negative result.

We’ve all probably had a few challenges or many whether we like it or not. But what makes these challenges more special and easier is knowing what lessons can be learned from them.

One of my biggest challenges was living through a war. When I was in Syria at eight years old, a massive war started that changed my whole life. I went from being a happy girl living peacefully to a girl trying to escape from violence and bombs. This was very challenging because I had never been in this situation before. All my thoughts were negative, and I could only think that there would never be a solution.

My family and I left Syria and crossed the border to Turkey hoping to escape from war and violation. Even though I escaped from war and violation, I was never able to get rid of the challenges. My new challenge was not having the right to attend school.

Four years without school made me feel depressed. As a refugee, I wasn’t allowed to attend school because Turkey wasn’t my country and paying for school supplies was difficult for my family.

Since my parents applied for refugee status from the U.N. the first year that we were in Turkey, I still had some hope that I would go to a new country and get the education that I wanted.

After the four years that felt empty and meaningless to me without school, I finally received the chance to come to America.

When I first came to America, my challenge was learning English. Of course, in the beginning, it felt difficult, but I knew that I could eventually learn English. Despite this new challenge, I felt more confident that I could do it. My past challenges of living in Syria had taught me so much that I felt like learning English would be nothing in comparison.

As an English learner and a new person to America, my first school was SHS after so many years yearning for education. For two and a half years, all my improvements and achievements that I accomplished were all encouraged and praised by my teachers and friends at SHS. So even though I am leaving, heading off to a completely different school, the hard work that I did, the emotions that I had, will all be at SHS forever.

All these previous challenges prepared me for the future. Now I have more strength, power, tragedy, perseverance and determination. Looking back to all the challenges just gives me a sense of hope, and the words “it will be fine” in my brain.

I know that sometimes it is difficult to focus on the positive when we are in difficult situations. But these challenges are meant to make us stronger, not weaker. It is meant to prepare us for more difficult challenges.   

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