11165 Zhu XX, 9th grade, Male
Translated by Laurice Shern
In 1999 my father passed away, so my mother had to support the family by taking up his livelihood and chores. In 2002, I began attending school. At first, I did not want to go because I was afraid that the teacher would hit and criticize me, and that my classmates would make fun of me as well. I didn’t understand that the opportunity to study was a luxury. It was only until my mother’s insistence and my older brother’s and my teacher’s encouragement that I went to school. Because my family was too poor to afford new books, I brought a worn out Chinese book that had pages missing from it to class. Later my teacher gave me a math book.
In that year, my mother
was abducted and sold. She had told us siblings: “I am going out to
work. Once I have earned enough money I will return.”
But the two men who had promised this work lied to her and took her away. She
In first and second grade, I would always take someone else’s book. In fourth grade, the government provided books for free. But I could not afford the additional prep books so I could only rely on the textbooks. My older brother dropped out of school to earn money so that I could continue my studies. Because my older brother undergoes such hardships for me to go to school, I definitely treasure this opportunity to study. I am going to be very studious and I will never give up.