My name is Winifred Mei Xin Coleman. I am 11 years old. I live with my family in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho. I was adopted when I was two years old.
I've always known in my heart of hearts that I was adopted. For one thing, I don't resemble any of my family members. Mom's tall and has blonde hair while Daddy is dark with black hair (he's black). I have two sisters and they look like daddy, but with lighter "cafe-au-lait"-colored skin. They are beautiful, very exotic loking. Meanwhile, I am small for my age (and size) and have waist length silken black hair, yellowish skin, and bow shaped lips. My eyes are almond shaped. I look like a Chinese girl.
I should: I was born in China (duh!!).
Anyway, on Saturday mornings for the past six months, I have been trying to learn Chinese, as a way of "staying in touch" with my heritage. I'm not only learning the language: I'm also learning to write in Chinese. It is not nearly as easy as it looks. It takes a certain way to make your characters come out the way the instructor wants them to, and there's just so darned many of them! (I think there's over 8,000 different characters in the Chinese language!) As for the language, how you say something could end up being something you totally did not expect.
I'm not doing too bad, but then again, I'm not donig that good either. I'm making average grades (or below); the last test I flunked badly, and I felt as if I had failed my Chinese ancestors. I got punished by my instructor and was shamed in front of the entire class. It was totally humiliating. When I told my mom and daddy about it, I burst into tears. I could not help myself.
If things don't get any better soon, I may end up dropping out. They put too much pressure on kids; yes, I know education is important, but going to school six days a week is rather hard. I have to get up by six, be on the bus by seven, and don't get out of the school yard until 4:00 in the afternoon. Then I have to spend doing an hour of homework when I get home, eat supper, and continue to work on my homework until bedtime, which is at 10:00.
On Saturdays, meanwhile, I go onto the bus at eight and don't get out until six. I then have more homework to do and by the time I'm done, I'm so wiped out I have often fallen asleep before I get my assignments completed.
Mom and Daddy know I am struggling, so they spport me. I just hope they aren't too disappointed when I tell them that I have been seriously thinking of dropping out of Chinese school. I'm just an 11-year-old kid; I gotta have some semblence of a normal life! I can't spend all my time poring over books and/or doing homework!! I should be enjoying what's left of summer!