“You are under my roof, so listen to me and go to college in Korea!” my father shouted. That was when I started packing, determined to leave the house. My father added, “Explain to me how you will survive without my help.” I ignored him, focusing on fitting my belongings in a small luggage, which was unpacked just two days ago. After putting ‘my room’ in it, I said, “I will show you how,” and that is how I became homeless, two days after coming home from America.
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Frankly, I did not link leaving home to becoming homeless; however, it was clear after I left home that I was homeless. Trying to come up with a place I could stay, what came to my mind was a ‘private library’ in my town, which lends rooms, not books, for people to study in a quiet environment. I headed straight to the library and asked for the manager. I had to wait for an hour, so I did.
The manager finally came and asked why I wanted to see him. I said, “I know this place runs from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m., but would you let me stay here 24/7? I will clean the whole library and restroom for free.” The manager was perplexed by my request, but I was confident he would take me up on the offer until he said, “It’s against our policy, and we already have a cleaning lady” My first strategy failed.
I needed more time with the manager to change his mind, so I asked for coffee. While waiting, I shouted in mind “Come on, think!” and the second strategy came to me.
As the manager sat down with a cup of coffee, I asked, “Wouldn’t it be great if your library offered your customers help with their study? I think it would be a great service, and I am confident I can help students here with their English.” By the expression on his face, I knew my second strategy worked. After I promised to help with math as well, I got permission to stay there 24/7, something unprecedented.
Since then, I have ‘achieved’ many nicknames such as Captain of Cafeteria(the place where I teach students), Mr. Resident(self-explanatory), and best of all, the Guy. I am there all the time so people refer to me as the Guy.
The Guy is happy most of the time; he is appreciated when teaching and feels independent having a roof over his head without his father’s help. But the trouble comes at night, when he is left all alone in a small room. In the room are a laptop, books, some clothes, and the biggest of all, uncertainty. He despises the uncertainty because it constantly whispers to him that he has no future. It incessantly tries to convince the Guy to submit to his fate and go back home.
The Guy, however, does not give in. He instead accepts fate in his way, by pronouncing it differently. He pronounces it as ‘fight.’ He could well have given in to fate and stayed home. Instead, he decided to fight his fate.
No, actually, he decided to fight his ‘fight.’ He will lose many times, but at least it will be him who chooses the fight, not the other way around. He will regret his choice at times, but every time he does, he will be comforted by that he did not let fate dictate him, but chose his fate and fought it his best. Whenever his fate tries to talk him into giving in, the Guy looks straight in its eyes and asserts, “The only part of my life you can affect is its ending. Until then, let me take care of my life!”
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