My name is Anthony Castro, I am in 8th grade, and I am the typical teenager. I don’t care about school or anybody, I hate homework and socializing, and I just want to get out of this school and go somewhere different because I hate everyone in it. Pan American is an ok school, but the students are constantly bullying each other including me.
However, today was a different day. As the clock on the classroom wall hits 3:00, the bell rings and I finish spacing out, gather my belongings and the students and I head out the school in a single file line. My dad beeps his car horn which alarms me that he has arrived, and picks me up as usual and we begin to drive home. My dad was asking me questions about what kind of high school I wanted to go to and we usually don’t talk in the car, so I knew something was up. I vaguely answer his questions because I just wanted to go home and rest. We arrive to my house after about 20 minutes of driving around Kensington and reaching Wyoming. As I walk through the small hallway before I enter my living room, I can feel the heat from the many electrical heaters scorching the area, forcing me to remove my coat before I melt. I make my way to the kitchen to smell the wonderful rice, beans, and chicken my mother usually cooks for our daily diet. I serve myself a hot steaming plate and set it aside to cool down while I make my way to my room to remove my school uniform. I walk up the steps by the kitchen and head towards my mother’s room to greet her on this cold, dark, cloudy winter afternoon. I open her door and I see her with a letter in the grip of her hands.
“Congratulations! You got accepted to PMA, I am so proud of you!” PMA, or Philadelphia Military Academy, is a school that prepares the students physically and mentally for the military At this point, the heat from the room is no longer present in my head. All that I can feel is excitement, the blood rushing, my heart racing. I remove my bag and it slams against the floor, I slowly walk and grab the letter and read it out loud.
“Hello Anthony Castro, I would like to congratulate you for being accepted to this academy...We welcome you to the open house next week on...Sincerely...” In my head I am thinking, what about SLA? My mother is very supportive when it comes to the military because most of her family is a part of the military or they have high positions in their branches. I wanted to continue the legacy, but something was telling me that I needed to pick another school. I knew that I needed to go to Science Leadership Academy because all of my teachers were telling me that it was a really good school and they prepared me really well.
“Que paso? ” My dad makes a confused face and my mom explains to him that I was accepted to the school.
“Mom I have to tell you something. I know you love the military or whatever, but for the sake of my education, I think that Science Leadership Academy is a better option. I know that you are proud of me and I honestly would love to go to that school but I like SLA better.”
The smile on my mom’s face instantly turned into an angry frown. She was getting upset with me and I know that I am growing up, it’s about time I start making my own decisions.
“Unbelievable Anthony, why? How are you going to get there, who is going to buy you more clothes? I am not driving there everyday! Esto es increible!! ” Her voice was rising, and I knew that she was not playing games once she started speaking spanish, her entire tone changes
“Sorry mom, I just think it is best for me. I have enough clothes and I can just take the train. They can provide me with transpasses.” I retaliate with the best possible response I could think of.
“Ok, but if you attend this school you better get good grades, otherwise I am taking you out.” She returns back into her bed and I walk out, dragging my bag and coat in hand, depressed that I am unable to satisfy my parents. I know how much the military meant to my mom and she really wanted me to attend that school. I walk up the next flight of steps heading to my room on the third floor, remove my uniform, put on my pajamas, and went downstairs to eat my food. Felt like a black hole in my heart, my emotions twisting and turning like a stomach ache, confused as to what exactly I should be feeling right now. I knew I made the best decision for me, SLA is a better curriculum in my opinion and nothing was going to change that.
After a long discussion talking about “I am very proud of you no matter what Anthony. Military or not, you have a lot of potential and I will allow for you to attend that school.” Relief is all I feel. Does she actually mean this? As long as she is proud of me, I am happy.