It should never go without saying that as a nation becomes prone to wars those who suffer the most are children. As a baby grows up its life helps to form as well as shape its future. The same concept applies to me, my birth and name mostly relates to the way I am, live and act today. Most of the people may not see this kind of connection within them, but it only takes a bit of thinking and research to realize that life turns people to be what they are today. Every event and occasion that a child experiences can influence the growth and actions of that child even when he or she becomes an adult. I was born on February 14th 1985, on the Valentines Day in a country called Bosnia. When I was 6 years old I joined primary school, I studied for 7 years before our country got into war that resulted from a multiethnic strife between the Serbia and Croatia. I wouldnt say that I had a normal childhood experience like normal kids did, during the peak of the war most of the schools and homes were bombed with snipers shooting at every person they found on their way.
I lost most of my family members to the war, currently I live in the United States with some of my mother. When I look back at my childhood I am able to realize that my childhood experience were so different from what is considered to be a normal childhood today. But the experiences shaped me to be the way I am today, here are some of the things that I learned with the experiences. I remember the day when grenades, rockets and war tracks landed at the back of our yard, I was just there seated at the Conner of my room scared, wondering what would happen next, as each grenade and bomb exploded, I wondered would we survive, what innocent child would be killed or lose their parent, who will survive the attacks, will I be one of the victims, would my family be one of the victims. I noticed how some of my schoolmates would come to me and share their experiences with me just because I would listen to them, I even realized then that I wanted to help them comfort their emotions while they were in pain.
So I decided at a young age that I wanted to become a healer because that may have been the purpose that I had in life, as the experiences that I had in life shaped me to become an empathic and a compassionate person. Since I was evacuated as an immigrant to the United States, I always felt guilty about having fun just like other kids did. I worried that having fun was a sign of disrespect to some of my family members who were still in Bosnia. Actually, it took me quite a number of years to realize that it was okay to laugh, smile or to enjoy life. Several years later I reconnected with my family via Facebook, I also managed to observe how much happiness they had despite the political turmoil. I managed to talk to my father whom I never thought I will hear from ever again. I learned that worrying about them wasn't going to change anything about the situation they were in.
Even though I was among the lucky people who got immigrated to USA I still faced a lot of obstacles especially trying to learn English as a second language was quite a struggle. In fact, I had to go back to college to study English and other courses as well as working part time so that I can make life to be better for my 3 year old son. I had a lot of trouble getting a job, making new friends or even achieving basic tasks like buying food. To address this situation, as an immigrant I had to take ESL classes to learn English. Actually, to begin with, finding time between jobs and caring for my son was difficult especially when an immigrant wasn't literate enough. One of the biggest obstacle an immigrant parent faces is raising up his/her children in a country whose culture is new and unfamiliar. Most often parents find their children being quickly Americanized which may be in contrast with their cultures. In addition to that kids tend to learn English faster more than their parents do. What I plan to accomplish is to achieve better employment so as to make it easier for my son and I to survive. I am hoping to accomplish it by searching for a better job.
I plan to use resilience to help me thrive despite the concept of adversity. Even though I witnessed the massacres, bullet holes and bomb sounds going off I choose to focus on the love and support around me instead of dwelling on the past. My dreams and goals are to go back to my home country Bosnia and check up on my family. I also hope to spread a word of peace, and urge people that negotiation is the best way to solve conflict.
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