“Would, I be fine?” I inquire softly to Māmā and Bà Bà.
“Don’t worry, just believe in yourself and ignore nasty comments.” My Māmā’s tone was silky and kind-hearted. She patted me softly on the back and kiss my forehead lightly to reassure me for all the pressure I have.
As I entered Shāmiàn island primary school with my two brothers and sister, I glanced at my Māmā and Bà Bà once more, waving ceaseless at them. So many emotions emerged from my mind; frightened, happy, determined and shocked. Nine hours of school and nine hours, not seeing my parents ― this was going to be hard.
I am eight years old and this is my very first time at school. My parents didn’t have enough money to raise four kids up so they let big sister, older brother and younger brother go to a good school first and when they make more money, they then sent me to a good school. I was very scared, kids in class might laugh at me for not wearing the correct uniform or starting school that late, but Māmā told me not to worry. Normally when my two brothers and sister have gone to school, I would go to the free market alone, holding a wooden basket to store the supplies and get vegetables and meat for my whole family to eat. The free market ladies had already got used to seeing my face so they usually give me small treats whenever I pass. But once I got home, there were still lots of chores to do; clean the bed, mop the floor and cook lunch for Māmā and Bà Bà once they got home from work. Since being that young of age, I normally cry if I got a scratch after coming back from the free market or burning my hands on the cookpot, but every time I shed tears, Māmā would slap me hard on the face. “Stop that,” She would scowl, “Did you want to bring bad luck to our family?” I had no freedom here but no matter what, I had to deal with it.
This is my life and it was horrible