I’ve had several people ask me what is “freedom writing” and what are “Freedom Writers.” It started as a bunch of kids writing their stories in the hopes that someone might read and find hope. Funny thing is that sometimes I have to go back to my own story when I’m looking for hope and motivation to persevere through hard times and achieve my goals. To wit, I share with you this excerpt from The Freedom Writer’s Diary: 10th Anniversary Edition.
I was five months pregnant when I graduated from high school. I wasn’t worried, though, because I had a plan. I was going to college and I was going to make something of myself. For a while the plan worked and I worked the plan. Spring semester came around and I jumped in full speed ahead, ready to conquer the world. But as time went on, and the plan didn’t seem to be taking me any closer to my goal of graduating from college, my vision started to grow dimmer and dimmer.
It was 30 minutes before my intro to mass media class; a course from which I was on the verge of being dropped because I was either late or absent on a regular basis. I spent the previous 30 minutes trying to scrounge up a few bucks to put gas in my car. I dumped my change jar and counted almost four dollars in pennies. Then I dug in the couch, under beds, in junk drawers, in my purse, and checked every pants or coat pocket until I had exactly five dollars. I put them in a ziplock bag and headed to the gas station, hoping I could get to class on time.
“I can’t take that,” said the little Asian woman, when I went to hand her the bag. She didn’t even move to it. “How do I know it’s five dollars?” ( Read more )