When I moved to the United States for my higher education from Kenya, Africa, I had my worries and expectations. The fact is that I was not naïve to life as a young man. Back at home, I had earned my high school certificate after four years of walking to and from school. The dream of studying abroad came true when I landed in New York City in the Fall of 08. Whatever was ahead of me remained unknown until the day when so many things started to demonstrate that it wasn’t what I had in mind? Inside me, a reminder kept popping up. I wanted to share my personal story with the world. That was the least I could do with my own hands and memories. So I did.
In 1987, I was born to a family of 14. Nothing looked unusual at all, except the number? What was there to hate or like? As kids, we walked, played, sang, listened to stories and did pretty much anything other kids do (mark my word: not everything but anything). The only difference however, was that we learned to make do with what we had. No fantasies, no heroes and nothing to brag about. I was not different. I was just like everyone else. The green fields and blue skies did not last. Things changed, one at a time. Some changes were natural and teary while some were not. Was our family ready for them? Oh, wait, was anyone, regardless of who they were, ready for them? I had no clue.
It makes me cry inside every time I think of that story. How did that happen? Am I dreaming or it really happened? It is hard to believe or come to terms with losing five siblings. My family lost five siblings. That was tough to handle. There was no war that took them away; there were no accidents or natural disasters. There was death. It is true that no one can surely say that they will be living tomorrow. With that number cut short by death, I looked to the skies and wondered like the rest of the humans who have lost their loved ones: why me? There has never been a satisfying answer to that question and that is why I asked for confidence to share my story through My Life Sentences.
First, writing and publishing my personal life was not and still isn’t easy for me. I feel lifted up whenever a reader downloads a copy on Amazon but I ask myself what they will think after they read the last sentence of the book. Will they be inspired to do more or they will resent me? Should I just not imagine what they will do? I do not know. With thousands of readers already knowing my story, I feel a little relieved but that is not all I wanted. I want to share it with more. I kindly request you to read it: My Life Sentences – A True Story.
When I came to the United States, I thought my life would change for the better. I was partly right and partly wrong. I have learned so much in less than four years. I am a better person today than I was yesterday. Life, to me, means doing good to others and even with that in mind, I feel like I have not done enough myself to make this world a better place. There is a fight inside me, one side wants to win and the other side hates losing. It is hard. Everything is new again; the future is filled with hope and enthusiasm, and that is the better part.
What compelled me to write my story and put it out there for the whole world to see through it was the inner desire to inspire others. What I know is that we can all achieve it when we choose to try. Through adversity, you can choose to succumb and fade off or walk out stronger than ever. Tomorrow is not the end of the world, but we never know! Finally, to everyone out there who wants to read a different kind of story, you can read the first chapter of my memoir for FREE using this link My Life Sentences – A True Story.
NB: While not writing, I learn to play piano, do volunteer work and write columns for the Kansas City Star Newspaper. I currently live in Liberty, Missouri, United States. I can also be found at www.chirchir.co.cc. Thank you!
This is written by Elisha Chirchir [email@example.com]