By Wesley Harijanto
My parents were Indonesian immigrants who came to the United States to study and live what we call the “American Dream.” They finished their schooling, then got married and before you know it, I was born on December 2, 1993, in Southern California ( one of the states of America).
Like any normal child, I attended school once I was about 5 years of age and interestingly, there were many Chinese students in the school. By the time I was about 6 I not only attended school, but also went to swimming lessons, and piano lessons. I really disliked one of the three, piano lessons, and really halfheartedly practiced my piano. Basically, I wasted my time and my parent’s money because in the long run I never really improved dramatically in piano at all. That was basically the first 14 years of my life. It was filled with great disrespect to my parents who only wanted the best for me in my life and unfortunately, I was unable to see it.
The next four years were very critical to my life. It was a time when getting the good grade was very important because universities would look at my achievements throughout these four years. During this period of time, I managed to get good grades and also found a passion in swimming, which I was good at. My life was very stress free, it seemed like everything was perfect, but a small thing really evaded me. Every Sunday, for all my life, I would attend church and go home without really thinking about what I was learning. However, one Sunday I really thought about why I went to church and what were my true intentions. After thinking it through, I began to take church much more seriously and I became a Christian. From then on my life really changed. It became more focused on doing things like helping others, respecting my parents, and living a Christian lifestyle. As for my academics, I was blessed; I managed to graduate with special academic honors and was inducted to the swimming Hall of Fame at my school. I finished high school a very happy person.
Well, that takes us basically to where my life is now. I currently am studying Civil Engineering which is definitely a lot of stress, but fortunately I enjoy the field. I hope to graduate in four years and continue on to graduate school. The reason I am here on behalf of my friends in LA is to teach English and convey the love that God has shown me throughout my life.
(Shared in a 2012 English Summer Camp )