Sacrifice in success
January 28, 2022
There are various reasons why senior Khual Pi is grateful for the life he has today. The choices his parents have made led to a broad range of opportunities offered in the U.S. But, there is one aspect in particular that truly inspires and humbles Pi. When his father was a teenager, he worked in illegal child labor factories. Without this sacrifice, Pi would not be living the life he has today.
“There wasn’t much work going around, and there was not really any way to support our lives,’’ Pi said.
When he came to the U.S. at age 5, Pi experienced major culture shock, such as the usage of eating utensils and water fountains.
Soon after he began school at Clinton Young Elementary, he felt accepted right away because of the diversity of the school. He was able to learn English quickly. Pi says it was due to the school being well equipped for his needs.
He is fluent in Zomi, but his younger siblings have a difficult time speaking it as clearly because they grew up in the U.S. He believes that it is important for Chin youth to speak their native language so they can communicate with elders.
Growing up, Pi has seen Chin students doing things that would not have been taken well by Chin society as a whole. He sees them integrating into the “negative side of American culture,” where he feels there’s more crime.
‘‘To see your kid just doing all that stuff with the opportunity you give them,” Pi said. “I feel like calling it a disappointment would be an understatement… I would say it’s catastrophic.”
Pi understands the opportunity that his parents provided for him and wants to utilize it by going further in life. He wants to pursue college and eventually get a steady job. It’s not something that he’s exactly eager to do, but he puts himself second in order to make them proud.
‘‘I want to pay my parents back for what they did for me,’’ Pi said.