My Diary

Powerful Essays
My Diary

October 11, 1950

I found the diary of my girlhood journey and new life in America yesterday. I feel that the story and lesson I learned from it are priceless and should be told; therefore I am publishing this collection of deep innermost thoughts from my youth for you to read and enjoy. It is my hope that you can look at your life and realize all the things there are to be thankful for.

It seems like just yesterday I was first coming to America. I can still clearly feel the wonder and astonishment that rushed through my body that day at the sight of America. The tall buildings aligned with the horizon welcomed me to my new home. All I could manage to utter was, "There it is! This is it."

My mouth gaped open in amazement and a chilly wind whipped through my hair as I set eyes upon the beginning of the rest of my life.

There it stood beckoning to me, Ellis Island. It was my first stop in America. I heard all about America from my father, who had already visited once. He told me of the different clothing styles, big cities, bigger buildings, free education, and unusual foods. Soon I would experience all this on my own.

My parents' decision to bring my sister and I to America back in 1899 was based upon bettering our lives and pure adventure. We had everything in Germany, but back then everyone wanted to be American. My sister and I could receive free education here. There wasn't much education available in Germany at the time, and what there was cost a great deal. In America education was free.

October 18, 1900

My first stop in America was at a place called Ellis Island. All of the immigrants have to stop there first before being considered a real American.

While there, I saw no two people that looked a like. Everyone spoke different languages. It was hard to communicate with some people. Luckily, my sister, Emily, and I speak some English, and we'll learn even more once we start school. After the brief registration at Ellis Island, Dad took us straight to our new dwelling. I was hoping it would be spacious and clean, just like our old house, but it wasn't. It wasn't a house like I was used to, but what they call tenement housing. It's a small apartment, with only two rooms. I don't even get my own bedroom. ...

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...ted the furniture shop from Dad, and it's still open today. My parents were very happy at the success of their two children. I completed school, married, and later became a writer. Emily also completed school and married. She became an English teacher. Emily died at the tender age of 24 during childbirth. I miss my family dearly.

Looking back on those months of my life when we first arrived in America, I only now realize how much I learned. I can now see how selfish and inconsiderate I was to my family. I was self-centered, but I didn't realize it at the time. Dad was having problems supporting his family, but I was worried about not having a new dress or toy. Both of my parents made the best life possible for Emily and I with what little they had. They sacrificed the certain life they once knew in Germany to come to an unknown country with no idea what the future would hold for them, just so my sister and I could better our lives. I didn't learn this lesson until I went to school and experienced my own struggles. I realized how hard it is to survive and support myself let alone a family. I can never show enough appreciation to my parents for what they did for Emily and I.
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