I Push Myself Harder Than Most Students, Don't Judge Me Because I Care More Than You

I Push Myself Harder Than Most Students, Don't Judge Me Because I Care More Than You

I'm the girl who gets upset when she gets a 'B.'

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Growing up, both of my parents put a lot of pressure on me to do well in school. If I had to be honest, they were strict on everything but especially school and grades. Both of my parents are Asian immigrants, which basically meant that they pushed me so hard to ensure that I had an easier and better life than they did. To them, school was the most important thing. When I was younger, I resented it. I hated it and I'm sure if you had asked me, I would have said I hated them too. It always felt that nothing I ever did was good enough. If I received a 'B' then I got a huge lecture about how I didn't try enough and how I only cared about my friends. If I received an 'A', it wasn't "good job, I'm proud of you" but rather "get more A's" or just a simple nod. I remember at one point, I was in fourth or fourth grade and I received straight 'Bs' on my report card and my dad got me a tutor. Emphasis on, I was in fourth grade.

As my childhood progressed, I was constantly compared to other kids. It became about how my cousin was so smart and I should be like him. Or how their friend's daughter was in all advanced classes but I wasn't. Trust me when I say that I felt like I was never good enough for my parents. From the time that I was very young, my parents constantly pushed me to be better and to be smarter.

By the time I entered high school, it was no longer them pushing me to do better but rather, myself. I would stay up late all night studying, much to my dad's disapproval and constant lectures when he'd catch me taking notes at 2 a.m. I elected to take several Advanced Placement classes throughout high school, pushing myself to do more and to do it well. I pushed myself to get better grades, attempting to receive only A's in order to graduate summa cum laude. Throughout my four years of high school, I didn't miss one homework assignment. I never skipped school, unless I was so sick that I felt like I was dying. In the end, I pushed myself harder than my parents ever would have pushed me. My hard work paid off and I managed to graduate summa cum laude and later attend Florida State University.

Crazily enough, I push myself harder now in college than I did in high school, or ever before. At most, I allow myself one 'B' per semester. I push myself so that my GPA won't drop. I'm that girl who gets upset, possibly cries, when she receives a 'B' on an exam. To me, an 'A-' isn't good enough. Anything that's not an A lowers my GPA, even if it's just by a little. At times, it can get uncomfortable when I talk to people about how I'm upset that I didn't get the grade I wanted. "So what, you got a 'B'? That's great?" Yes, it's great for you but it's not great for me.

I'm sorry that I try harder than you, if not most people. I'm sorry that I care more about my grades than you. I'm that one girl who spends the entire weekend studying rather than going out. I'm that one girl who tries her best on every single assignment because one wrong grade makes the difference between an 'A' and an 'A-'.

If it wasn't for both of my parents (and their strict ways), I would not be where I am today. My first two years of college are completely paid for through scholarships. I'm also proud to say that after years of hard work, I will be graduating a year early.

I am incredibly grateful to both of my parents for instilling such a strong work ethic in me and constantly pushing me to be the best I can be.

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It's Time To Thank Your First Roommate

Not the horror story kind of roommate, but the one that was truly awesome.
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Nostalgic feelings have recently caused me to reflect back on my freshman year of college. No other year of my life has been filled with more ups and downs, and highs and lows, than freshman year. Throughout all of the madness, one factor remained constant: my roommate. It is time to thank her for everything. These are only a few of the many reasons to do so, and this goes for roommates everywhere.

You have been through all the college "firsts" together.

If you think about it, your roommate was there through all of your first college experiences. The first day of orientation, wishing you luck on the first days of classes, the first night out, etc. That is something that can never be changed. You will always look back and think, "I remember my first day of college with ____."

You were even each other's first real college friend.

You were even each other's first real college friend.

Months before move-in day, you were already planning out what freshman year would be like. Whether you previously knew each other, met on Facebook, or arranged to meet in person before making any decisions, you made your first real college friend during that process.

SEE ALSO: 18 Signs You're A Little Too Comfortable With Your Best Friends

The transition from high school to college is not easy, but somehow you made it out on the other side.

It is no secret that transitioning from high school to college is difficult. No matter how excited you were to get away from home, reality hit at some point. Although some people are better at adjusting than others, at the times when you were not, your roommate was there to listen. You helped each other out, and made it through together.

Late night talks were never more real.

Remember the first week when we stayed up talking until 2:00 a.m. every night? Late night talks will never be more real than they were freshman year. There was so much to plan for, figure out, and hope for. Your roommate talked, listened, laughed, and cried right there with you until one of you stopped responding because sleep took over.

You saw each other at your absolute lowest.

It was difficult being away from home. It hurt watching relationships end and losing touch with your hometown friends. It was stressful trying to get in the swing of college level classes. Despite all of the above, your roommate saw, listened, and strengthened you.

...but you also saw each other during your highest highs.

After seeing each other during the lows, seeing each other during the highs was such a great feeling. Getting involved on campus, making new friends, and succeeding in classes are only a few of the many ways you have watched each other grow.

There was so much time to bond before the stresses of college would later take over.

Freshman year was not "easy," but looking back on it, it was more manageable than you thought at the time. College only gets busier the more the years go on, which means less free time. Freshman year you went to lunch, dinner, the gym, class, events, and everything else possible together. You had the chance to be each other's go-to before it got tough.

No matter what, you always bounced back to being inseparable.

Phases of not talking or seeing each other because of business and stress would come and go. Even though you physically grew apart, you did not grow apart as friends. When one of you was in a funk, as soon as it was over, you bounced right back. You and your freshman roommate were inseparable.

The "remember that one time, freshman year..." stories never end.

Looking back on freshman year together is one of my favorite times. There are so many stories you have made, which at the time seemed so small, that bring the biggest laughs today. You will always have those stories to share together.

SEE ALSO: 15 Things You Say To Your Roommates Before Going Out

The unspoken rule that no matter how far apart you grow, you are always there for each other.

It is sad to look back and realize everything that has changed since your freshman year days. You started college with a clean slate, and all you really had was each other. Even though you went separate ways, there is an unspoken rule that you are still always there for each other.

Your old dorm room is now filled with two freshmen trying to make it through their first year. They will never know all the memories that you made in that room, and how it used to be your home. You can only hope that they will have the relationship you had together to reflect on in the years to come.


Cover Image Credit: Katie Ward

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A Little Bit Of Life Wisdom From College

Reflection.

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A rainy day during Spring Break is the perfect time to sit down, relax, and write. A good time to clear your head and take some off time and look at things, and where they've been and where they're at, and perhaps where they are heading. To take some off time to follow a strand of ingenious thought hidden somewhere within an oscillation in our brains, a crevice leading down it's own unique set of train tracks, down a clickety elevator shaft clacking after every floor it descends, leading to underground layers deep within the mine of random access memories that makes up our mind. Follow it down, to see where your thoughts want to take you on this fine day, like so many before it. Maybe in the process, you might even start to figure out where things are going. Sometimes it is hard to tell these days.

Like where's my life heading? Who knows? Not me. Don't ask me what I'll be doing in five years, at this point your most random inkling is as good as my most educated guess. It seems that that day in preschool when we were asked what we wanted to be when we grew up they forgot to tell us that once we "grew up" we'd be just as clueless.

Someone once said that the mark of a wise man is that he realizes that he knows nothing, and well, it seems that college might've turned me into the wisest of them all. Seriously though, what a ride it's been. Hard to believe we're less than one year in. From the sly lawyer, to the lofty sermon-making politician, to the sophisticated French poet, to the nutcase film director, to the ultimate frat bro, to the quick-witted entrepreneur, to the surfer dude who lives to shred, to the journalist-critic who hates on everything; I've played about as many roles as I have fingers in my hands in my limited time here. To say the least, it's been an interesting year.

And yet, all the questions that we were here to answer, all the parts of ourselves that we were here to define; they remain shrouded in uncertainty. Ambiguous, volatile uncertainty. It follows us around, like a dark silk cloak veiling our eyes, allowing us to see some, but never enough. Can it be that life is uncertain by nature or is it that life can be uncertain at times?

Might as well take it in I guess. We were never meant to know all the answers, or have everything figured out, for if we did, what would be the point?

No, we have to roll it on the daily. Roll the dice, and see what it falls on and play with it and carry on. Yes carry on, and play with it and see what it falls on, but most importantly— roll the dice. Dare. We are the players. Never in control of the game, but always in control of our own stake. Life. Don't forget that, or take it for granted and run it down until it means nothing, until you find yourself as diluted from being overconfident in your own self-belief as you would be diluted if you possessed none at all.

No. Find that balance, that cherished middle ground, between the sun that burned Icarus's wings off, and the waters down below where he drowned. Extremes were never good, but if you learn to tend the fire, you won't burn, and you'll find comfort on those long dark and cold winter nights. Find the balance, and live it out, humbly, greatly. Forget the stage, forget anyone is watching; live it out as you would by yourself, as only you can. You are immensely privileged to be on this Earth, and to have what you have, so don't take it for granted. But don't let its weight break your shoulders either. Laugh with it, let it make you stronger, for only when you laugh at yourself can you know who you truly are.

Be appreciative, but not indebted; be confident, but not conceited. Dance on the edge, brilliant masterful dancing on the edge of madness, but never fall in. Ever stand strong. And ever move forward. With ease and grace, sometimes; with clumsiness and pain whenever necessary.

Be free, be a kindred spirit, be a force to be reckoned and don't bow down to anyone, but know how to let go of a lost cause. Know how to lose, to take a punch, to fall down, to be spat on, but ever have a smile on your face, ever keep your head held high, ever keep that dignity pure.

It's not about how bad you want it or about how much you're willing to sacrifice for it, but about how well you know yourself. I once heard that he who wins is not he who's still standing at the end, but he who kept his dignity.

Now don't confuse dignity with its ever conniving twin, pride. Pride stings, pride bites, pride talks a lot but has little to show for itself. It is the extrovert, it is the flashy one, it is the life of the party. But the party's shallow, and it's impact falls short. It might've been great fun, but it changed little, and it will soon be forgotten. Yes pride is the passerby, but dignity is forever. Keep it pure. Don't lose that which you can't recover, but also know not to recover that which should've never been found in the first place.

Be here for a good time or for a long time or for whatever you feel like being here for, but be here, and be you. It'll all be done too fast anyways, so make the best out of it, and remember to have fun.

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