I was standing at a corner of the walkway watching the students playing on the playground during recess time. This is part of my job, playground observation for those students that I am currently seeing. As I was observing one of the students, my mind suddenly got distracted by the memory of my childhood. I saw a group of boys playing with basketball, a group of girls playing with ropes and another group playing monkey game. I tried to search in my memories whether I have played these games everyday when I was at school like they do. Unfortunately, I couldn't recall anything about myself having fun at the playground. Then I started wondering, was it because the children in Malaysia don't really have fun time like this or just me didn't have the chance to play like them? And the answer is the later.
I remember during recess time while all my friends having fun outside the classroom, this is the time I needed to go to see my teacher to practice my public speaking. I always represented my school to participate the state level public speaking competitions (both Chinese and Malay languages) since I was 10 years old. For those of you who ever visited my house, all the trophies that sitting on the rack are the evidence of me not having regular fun time like any other children.
During the time when the competition season was over, I still did not have the chance to play like other kids do because I was on duty since I was the prefect at school. My entire school life, I was always on duty for either the prefect of the school or the monitor of my class. Worse still, I was the assistant head of the prefect for my final primary school year and I was the Head of the Board of Discipline for my final high school year. I was also the Girl Guide and the president for Chinese Society. I had a damn serious life!
When I think back, I notice that I have always been living my life upon somebody elses' expectations; my parents, my teachers and the people around me who cares. I went to the convent school that my mom asked me to; I participated in hundreds of competitions that my mom and my teacher told me to; I hold various important positions that people expected me to; and I barely asked myself what I really wanted in my life.
Have I ever lived my own live for myself? Have I ever asked myself what I like and don't? No, not until I decided to fly to US.
Ironically, I was inspired by my little brother who is 8 years younger than me. When he graduated from primary school, he told my mom that he wanted to go to a private school instead of following my mom's will. From that moment on, I realized that I can say "No", I realized that I can make my own choices for my own life.
Coming to US is a huge decision that I have made for myself. None of my family members supported me and I persuaded them. This is the first step that I took to start pursuing what I want in life. Am I feeling good for that? Heck, ya!
I do not regret for having such a childhood although I missed a lot of fun that most kids have. When I am on the stage enjoying all the praising and applause that people gave me, I felt thankful to my mom and my teachers. I am standing where I am because of the childhood that I had. After all, nothing in this world is free. If you think I like to play and have fun around like a child, that's probably because I did not have enough fun when I was a kid. I guess that's the reason I love Disneyland and other themeparks so much.