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“It is hard to dream of fantasies and know that they don’t exist in reality .But I say it is harder to know that fantasies are real and acknowledge that you are just not a part of them” Unknown .These simples words meant a lot to me ,being Zineb Jaafari meant that I was the young child and that fact put me in a rather restricted situation ,my parents were overprotective they always looked out for me more than my older sister ,I spent the majority of my childhood in a hospital with a needle in my veins since I wasn’t even supposed to be alive my mother almost lost me a couple of time even when I wasn’t even born ,she would always tell me stories and that before me she had a child that she lost and that left her devastated even though she already had my sister she wanted another baby when she found out she was pregnant with me she was not only happy but she was scared as well .Her previous miscarriage had left her with scars not the visible ones but the emotional ones those that leave us broken ,my father was afraid as well but he told me that he prayed a lot around that time .
After 9 painful stressful months I was born on September 23,1997 my mother would often say to me ’that was the happiest day of my life’ at those words I would smile and hug her enjoying the feeling of warmth and finding comfort in her loving arms .Growing up with overprotective parents wasn’t always a bad thing it had its perks ,my family was definitely one of those families that liked to travel and that’s what led me here to where I ‘am right now on one summer vacation my sister mother and I decided to travel to America simply for a visit and to discover the American lifestyle , explore the culture and to have fun ,it was one of the best things that I’ve ever done.
It made me see the world from a different perspective and it also opened many doors for me, back in my home country Casablanca one of the best cities in the world thinking about it now brings me sadness I really miss it, lights shone so bright by night it was so alive it never slept it has a magic to it that only people who lived there felt it. A beautiful place filled with kind generous people one of the most expensive cities to live in the world I lived there for 17 years everything was planned for me since the day I was born my parents knew the schools they wanted me to attend the major that I would be ,my future career it was all planned out for me my parents weren’t controlling it was quite the opposite they wanted me to be the best and I always relied on them when it came to making decisions it was my nature it was a trait that I’ve inherited from my grandfather may he rest in peace I was a very shy person I didn’t speak much I hated giving speeches I couldn’t participate in class because I was socially awkward .But then In life we all have those light bulbs moment that one minute that you just say ‘hold up’ this isn’t right and that happened to me last summer in no other than the one and only Orlando, Florida such a great city I thought on my first day here during the trip a friend who worked with an organization that provided international students with programs to come and live and go to school in Americashe suggested that I sign up for one of the programs; the host family one at first that thought seemed unrealistic I couldn’t even imagine it which was pretty strange since I’m a daydreamer but it just never crossed my mind I had more time to think about it going back home I realized the many opportunities that I was missing by being there,my life seemed not only boring but my goals seemed to be empty and void of purpose ,I realized that I’ve been living in a bubble , a shell of my own making I could have blame it on my parents’overprotective nature but I couldn’t because for the first time in forever I thought about myself this was my life and I was letting go to waste I allowed myself to get accumstomed to that lifestyle but I had a way out I could do whatever be whatever I want and I made a decision ,one that will not only affect me as a person, student, daughter even as a human being but it also affected my family ,my friends , I remember the first time I told my friends about,”you’re joking right? “said my best friend disbelief and curiosity burned in her eyes her black hair shone in the sunlight “I’m really not” was my reply she knows me well enough to figure out when I’m being sarcastic and when I’m actually serious it took her awhile to take it in but when she did her reaction was very positive and motivating my parents’ reaction wasn’t it took them a long time to even consider it and when they did make the decision to allow me to go on this insane adventure to a different country I was the happiest girl in Morocco . I felt like I finally had a purpose that I was on the right track
Arriving in America didn’t mean that everything was going to be handed to me like I was used to most of my life ,I had to work for it ,cook my own food ,do my laundry which turned out to be way easier than I thought it would be I made some amazing friends that I’m proud to call family ,I believe that everything happens for a reason that in life there are moment when you can either do or die you just follow your heart and do what feels right what makes you happy, to think about you and not the people around you ,I thought leaving my family would make them hate me ,that it would ruin my perfect daughter image but there’s no such thing as perfection ,I moved to America looking for something different ,to be myself and that decision was the best I’ve ever made I’m now a changed person I ‘am independent ,bold, I love what I do I don’t know what life has in store for me but I’m ready to take on any challenge , I work hard I sometimes look back on my life I remember my father’s footsteps as he enters the house that always smelled of berries and flowers my mother’s favorite perfume and she would always be in the kitchen cooking or making a cake she loved it, my sister and I would always be doing something fun whether we’re pulling a prank on our father or planning a trip to turkey or some other place now it all seems like a blur like it’s all a fantasy that I’m finally a part of and that thought makes me happy Life is too short to be spent fearing the unknown and not making those fantasies come true people need faith and to believe in themselves because if we let life pass us by then we’re not really living we’re just existing .
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