It’s almost 12 in the night. I’ve been studying for a while now. But my mind is taking me somewhere else.
I was in grade four when I had decided which college I wanted to attend. Most kids in grade four are playing football with their friends, or running in the park, or roller blading. But I had decided my college of choice. It is a great university in Pakistan. More importantly, my dad thought it was a great university in Pakistan.
Till my O Levels, I worked hard so I would be accepted into that college. “Only the best students get into that college.” my dad reminded me again and again. “Am I the best?” I questioned myself again and again. But to be honest, I cared more about myself sometimes.
My family warned me that if I debated (Parliamentary Debates), it would affect my grades and I wouldn’t make it into that university. I would end up nowhere, which would be another lesser ranked university in Pakistan. I would eventually lead an unhappy life, never get married and die. But I didn’t listen. I loved debating too much to stop. I still do. I managed my O Levels and debating well enough to succeed at both. I managed my family’s expectations and my own passion well enough to keep everyone, including myself, happy.
Along the way, I lost interest in that university. I think it’s great. But the world opened up and so did my options. I wanted to have a different experience than what was being offered in Pakistan. I wanted to reach a little higher because I believed I could and I should. So I did. On March 30th, 2013, I got accepted into the world’s most selective college: New York University Abu Dhabi. It’s my dream university. Because I can’t dream of a better university (experience).
Today, the decision from the Pakistani University arrived. With it came the dreams, aims and goals that I had once hoped to achieve. I’m sure the fourth grader in me will be ecstatic. But be sure that the A Level student in me will be equally glad. I worked hard for something and I got something better than what I had initially hoped for.
Just for that, the decision letter will get the highest place on my bedroom wall.