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Tearing Down the Wall

Ever since I can remember, I’ve always had a knack for discovery as long as it was somehow related to video games or technology. If I didn’t know something, I needed to find out and if I didn’t, it would kill me. If I stopped working on something during the day, I would think about troubleshooting the issue during my sleep or for days on end.

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There were also times when I would stay up all night just to circumvent a virus on my computer or lose hours of sleep when I hacked a Nintendo Wii for the first time. There is no doubt about it, I love technology.

I’ve always been told that I am thinker and a tinkerer, which is why nearly 10 years after graduating high school; I made the biggest decision of my life. In 2011, I decided to go college. Many have asked me, “Why don’t you back to school? ” The truth is that I would’ve loved to go right after graduating from high school but life threw me a curve ball. During my senior year, my mother and step-father split up. My mother, a housewife who hadn’t work for nearly six years after meeting my step-father, made me assume she became accustomed to it.

My mother was able to somehow support my sisters and I because of a settlement she won, but alas nothing lasts forever. I finally graduated high school expecting all of us to move into a Eduardo B. Morillo-Perez 2 new place while my mother and I both worked, but unfortunately it didn’t work out that way. We moved alright but my things went to a room and the rest of the contents of our three bedroom apartment went into storage. I was so confused and hadn’t a clue of what was going on. Soon enough, she mentioned something that I never would’ve expected. “Everything is packed and ready to go. We are all going back to Ecuador” she said.

I refused, thus leaving me here with my belongings, having to fend for myself. I now lost the luxury of slacking off. I had to work any job available just so I could pay the rent and not starve. I didn’t have mom or dad to ask for money. I had to put up with nasty customers at a fast food restaurant and being taken advantage by other co-workers because I didn’t know how to stand up for myself. I have tried to go back to school and went thought the proper protocols of filling out forms, writing essays, going on interviews but I could never get in without having to pay for everything out of pocket.

The biggest hurdle was financial-aid. Due to the fact that I was of certain age, I was still considered a dependent and I had to provide my mother’s tax information. The only way I could have that waived was if I was married. It was then when I grew cold, bitter and blamed my mother for all my setbacks. I felt lost and alone. I felt like I had no one to turn to. As years flew by, I started noticing that I was using my mother’s negligence and lack of absence as a crutch, hindering my progress the entire time. I am not a religious person, I never was, but somehow I always thought certain things happen for a reason.

In 2009, I got reacquainted with an old flame from high school. We soon began to catch up on things from the past and soon enough she put the moves on me and the Eduardo B. Morillo-Perez 3 rest is history. I can honestly say that she is the sole reason I decided to back to school despite what anyone told me. When Olivia first met me again for the first time, I was living by myself in a room while working a mundane retail job at the airport. Fast forward nearly four years later and you now have a second-year computer science major with a 3. 5 GPA who has his own car and is well on his way to work on the next gadget or program.