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Literary Essay - the Power of Words

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The Power of Words

It is a customary Korean tradition that the parents and family throw a celebration of life when a baby turns 100 days old. A long time ago in Korea, the chances of newborns surviving past 100 days were very slim. Even though this isn't the case anymore, many people still celebrate the 100th day with a party. It is celebrated with lots of different foods, games, and rituals. There is a ritual where the baby is placed in front of a table of objects such as string, books, a bowl of rice, a pencil, and money. The child is then urged to pick up an object from the table, where it is believed the one selected will foretell the child's future. For example, if the child picks up a pencil or book, they are destined to be a scholar. If they pick up money or rice, they will be wealthy. If the child picks up the thread, it is believed that they will have a long life. Ever since I picked up the pencil and stuck it in the bowl of rice, people always told me I was something different.

Being the first in my family to be born and raised in America, my parent's thought it would be difficult for me to learn English because they were not capable of teaching me themselves. Surprisingly, this disadvantage did not hinder my learning. By the time I was three, I was able to say my ABC's. I was an exceptionally fast learner. My parents put me in many extracurricular activities like piano and cello. I was very good at what I did and I won many awards and competitions. It was not uncommon that people threw around the term "baby genius." However, my glory days were forcefully cut short when I was just seven years old. On the 23rd day of June, my little sister was born. Though I had trouble coming to terms with the fact that I was not a baby genius anymore, I still had dreams of success. And though she seemed to be a threat to me at the time, I came to love my sister anyway. After a few years, I decided it was not so bad having a sibling around. There was someone to play with and keep me company. Growing up, we never had cable or computers. My parents thought that they were a distraction from schoolwork so they never saw them as necessities. Regardless of being deprived children, my sister and I were rarely ever bored. We kept ourselves occupied by playing with Legos or puzzles or just riding our bikes around the friendly neighborhood. We always found things to do, but a lot of our time spent together, we would play school. I would play the fun teacher who always passed out candy and gave no homework. I wrote her worksheets and stories for her to read. She would love it whenever I wrote books for her. Sometimes I would write series and leave them unfinished just to leave her wanting more. That was the first time I realized writing things that other people enjoyed reading made me feel good about myself. Even if it was just my little sister who enjoyed my work, it was gratifying.

Growing up, I grew a passion for music. All the extracurricular activities that my parents put me through did not mean much to me earlier in life, but as I progressed in them, I couldn't get enough. I started doing even more. In middle school I started to play guitar, drums, and dance. I started making music on my own time and not just what I was required to practice for lessons. My whole life revolved around my music. During school, I would sit in class and write lyrics to songs. When I was not writing lyrics, I would be thinking about things to write lyrics about. Then I would go home and write more songs and play them. I would perfect them and record them. Then I would do it all over again. The songs were usually upbeat and happy. They were almost always comical songs about my everyday life. I just wrote about real things that happened to typical middle school kids; the crushes, the best friends, and the memories we shared together. They were just simple things that nobody took the time to appreciate. I would play for talent shows and other social events. I played piano and sang for the church praise band every weekend. I did minor performances here and there, while still continuing to do piano competitions and cello recitals. I joined the school orchestra and was given first



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