I’ll Never Forget | Teen Ink

I’ll Never Forget

April 2, 2022
By maygong SILVER, Wellesley, Massachusetts
maygong SILVER, Wellesley, Massachusetts
8 articles 2 photos 0 comments

Favorite Quote:
Every dream has a tomorrow, and every tomorrow has a dream.

I’ll never forget waving goodbye to my parents at the airport before I left Beijing.

Since the end of July, My fear and nostalgia gradually took the place of excitement, and my world turned so quiet that I could hear my heart pounding in anxiety as August 28, 2021, came in a blink of an eye.
That morning was cold and gray. I walked my dog for the very last time and got into the car with my four luggage, all heavily packed with the secure feeling of home and love.

On our way to the airport, the only thing that my parents talked about over and over was that I should take good care of my passport and my covid test result so that I can successfully board the plane. I normally should be annoyed because it was already the ten-thousandth time that they’d been reminding me so, but no, I know that they were intentionally avoiding topics like “see you in a year” that would definitely have both me and themselves burst into tears.

Under the sign that reads “international departure” was the saddest place I’ve ever been in my life. I stood there and took pictures with my mom, dad, aunt, and my cousins. I forced my eyes to smile at the camera and secretly bit my lips under my mask. I didn’t want to have our last picture in a year taken with a sad face, and I succeeded. I waved at my family with the upper part of my face – the visible part – smiling, and the lower part arduously controlling my tears. My freezing-cold, shaking hands gripped the handle of my carry-on luggage, and I turned to head inside. My teeth let go of my trembling lips, and my tears poured down as they blurred my vision.

My tears kept pouring, my hands kept trembling, and my heart kept pounding, but that doesn’t hinder at all my brain to guide me to do every next right thing. I passed some gates, went up and down some staircases, and entered several duty-free shops, all crying non-stop. That was when I truly felt what responsibility was: starting the moment I waved and turned, the responsibility of taking care of myself fell onto my own shoulders. I can be emotional, as people do, but that shouldn’t stop me from proceeding with what I’m doing. This separation of feeling and reason, I consider the first lesson of studying abroad alone.

The author's comments:

The fall of 2021 was my first experience ever studying abroad in the United States, far away from my home in Beijing, China. I was extremely excited at first, but on the date that I was supposed to leave came, I felt anxious and already started missing my family. However, as soon as I said goodbye to them, I learned to put aside my feelings, and letting reason take control of my mind, for I have now the responsibility of taking care of myself.

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