Learning he was him or not. I thought

Learning a
new language
that I
have never
heard or
spoken before
was difficult.

At the
age of
twelve, I
had to
jump over
the fear
and learn
the English
language. What
followed was
not only
the obstacle
of not
being to
understand the
language, but
also confronting social
rejection from
other children.

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Some say,
the best
form to
learn a
language is
to completely immerse
oneself in
that language’s country,
hence, physically move
that locality.

The physical
move creates
a certain
anticipation of
what is
to be
found there.

I can
still remember
the day
our family
moved to
the United
States, from
my native
country Nepal.

It was
the summer
of two
thousand nine,
a time
that marked
the rest
of life
until now.

My first impression of Spokane was that it was clean, big and tall buildings
and I was surprised to see my cousin Om at airport when he come to pick us up. He
was so big and tall; I couldn’t even notice if he was him or not. I thought he was
an American, as he asked me “how do you like it so far.” I was like “Are you
Nepali?” He said “I am Om!” then I told him that you are so big, I couldn’t
even recognize you. After that we get inside a car. When we were on freeway I
saw so many cars and those big buildings. Our family decided to move to Spokane
because our relatives, cousins and uncles were here. Looking back,
I believed
that the
journey has
been profitable one.

Once establishing here,
I could
continue my
studies in
a public
school here
in Spokane.

The change
was large,
but I
was receptive
to it.

I felt like My first day of school in
United States was isolation and devastation of feeling like you are the only
one who doesn’t belong or fit in an overshadow all else in one’s life. I went
to my first period class and sit in the corner of classroom. The classroom was
big and there were lot of posters hanging around on the wall, there were
numbers and equations on a poster. I sat around waiting for something to
happen. Something finally did happen as one student near me turned around and
asked me “what are you doing here?” As I replied saying I was new, his eyes
widened and gleamed manically. He laughed and turned to his friends and
repeated what I said. I didn’t know what I did wrong at first but I realized as
they begin to impersonate my accent. I was made fun of my clothes, my hair, and
my hand writing. I didn’t understand why this was happening to me and I didn’t
know what to do as, I was crying and siting silently.

There is no doubt that my literacy
knowledge progressed significantly thanks to school. However midway through
middle school, the most radical changed happened. I moved from Nepal, a Nepali speaking
country, to the U.S English speaking country. I did not know even the most
basic statements in English. When I was enrolled in school, I was put in a
special program called ESL, a program that helps non-English speakers, to learn
how to read and write in English. My ESL teacher Mrs. Jenkins stuck with me
helping me, so much in fact that by the end of the year I was teaching
classmates how to read and write in English. She would come and sit beside me
and help me read and pronounce words. She could explain me, show me images,
draw pictures if I don’t understand. Without her help, I would not be person,
who I am today. In two years, I was taken off that program. I went to high
school, and I was taking Honors and Advance Placement English classes.

I always had thought that our lives in
Nepal were perfect and nothing needed to be changed. I was upset at my parents
for taking us to this new place that we knew nothing about it. I let them know
that I didn’t like what they were doing by how I acted, but our life in Nepal
was not perfect because of education. I didn’t talk to my parents and tell them
that I am not moving. I tell them that I will Stay here and you guys move. It
was extremely hard to leave everything behind in Nepal and move to a new place.

I had never moved in my life, so didn’t know anything about it. The hardest
part about moving was going to be leaving my best friend and neighbors. Every
day after school I would call my friends and gather together to play soccer. We
would even play when there was rainy. We also played other sports like
basketball, football. I didn’t know how to tell them that I was moving, but
when my friends found out, they were disappointed as I was. When it was day to
leave my country, we loaded our stuff and I quickly said my last good-bye to my
friends. After that we left our old and start new Now, I am glad we moved here
6 years ago. I couldn’t let my parents know after all the complaining I had
done. Now, I realize it was one of the best things that have happened to me. I
still miss my old friends, but I know that moving here was the right thing to
do because I never would have made the friends I have, even when first couple
of months was very hard. I will never forget this in my life.

Now I am happy with my new life in new
country because I would have missed out all the friends that I have had and
grateful teachers who never hesitated to help me when I was doing something
wrong or teach me something new that would help me adjust to American culture. USA gave me a lot opportunities that I couldn’t reject it,
I can’t understand those kinds of students that as soon as they finish high
school start working on everything or start doing illegal
stuff, but USA gives me a lot of opportunities. Also, I have learned a lot of this country is
about how important is to know two languages at least you have a better chance
to get the job than another person that knows only
one. Finally, I
noticed on me that doing a progress on this language I don’t know hundred
percent yet, but I am learning a lot from every class that I am taking. I have
learned to fit in this strange culture.