I am an ordinary girl, but my story makes me different. If you are a person who judges a people by rumours, then you will never know who I am. If you ask my friends or even the people who don’t really know me in TAIS who June is, they might answer you like this: “Oh! She is the one who really cares about her grades” or “She is the obedient girl who has good grades.” On the other hand, if you ask my friends in my old Taiwanese system school the same question, they will say, “She is the smart girl, but she never studies.” These
comments reveal only half of my story.
I was living with no emotions before I came to TAIS. I felt nothing, especially about grades. Friendship and family didn’t really mean much in my mind too. My heart and mind seemed to be covered by a plastic bag. Sleeping and playing stupid games with my friends
were actually my life at that time. My parents didn’t really discipline me because they were busy. I could do whatever I want. I didn’t have a curfew, and I wouldn’t be punished if I got bad grades.
The big reason why I didn’t study is because I thought I was very smart, and smart people don’t need to be taught, but I forgot one thing. Even if you are closer to the finish line than others in the race, if you stand there and don’t move, people are going to pass you. Soon, people passed me. I got 4 Fs and 2 Ds; the Ds were in PE and music class. I hadn’t even memorized all the multiplication tables when I graduated elementary school. When I go to junior high school, things changed. The academic knowledge became harder. Teachers will force you to study. I was in a deeply pressure. I tried to catch up with my classmates, but I failed and failed. This continued for a year. At the end of the school year, my mom decided to put me into the American system to get used to it as soon as possible before I go to the USA.
When I transferred to TAIS, I couldn’t explain what was happening in my heart. It was like someone was giving me a hand and affirming me. I know that it was God calling me back to Him. During the summer of 2014, I went to all the bookstores and found all the
books that I used in the past. I gathered all the books together and studied them because I didn’t want to be mocked.
At the beginning of the first semester in TAIS, I talked a lot using my poor pre-HSP English. I pretended to be an expert of everything. It was a very difficult time for me because I was afraid of people discovering that I was actually not that good, even to my closest friend
in TAIS, Nicole. There was a big gap between our academic knowledge, and unfortunately she was the better one. I felt so much pressure around her. Whenever my friends were not around me, I would take out my books to study. I reviewed and even previewed. The craziest thing that I have ever done is to hide in blanket at night and use my flashlight to read.
I could have given up during this time, but I didn’t because I realized something. Happiness becomes my excuse. I always said that studying doesn’t make me happy, and being happy is the priority in my life. In fact, studying is actually not about tests and memorizing. It’s about learning; it is making your brain work. Furthermore, you have already paid a big amount of money, why don’t you cherish this opportunity. Use this prerogative to make yourself into a better person. Make yourself into a person that you will be proud to introduce to say “Hello, she or she is …” Also, in the reality, the diploma is going to follow you through your whole life. You will never get the chance to be a student at this age anymore. Once I understood this, the plastic bag that covered my mind was blown away.
Nowadays, I tell my stories to my friends. I want them to understand what I have understood. Don’t waste your time on the happiness that only stays for a while. Do things that will help you in the future, and when you look back you will be proud. If everything can
start again, I wouldn’t live the same way as I did. Now, I can say this without any embarrassment: “Hello, my name is June.”