Both my parents had cancer when I was studying in polytechnic

By Lifecanbebeautifulagain

I am a polytechnic graduate who recently secured a spot in a local university. However, getting there was an extremely arduous journey for me to say the least. Here's my story.

I come from a less privileged family, therefore in a bid to avoid adding to my parents' financial burden I chose to work almost everyday during the school holidays so I could earn some personal pocket money. Both my parents aren't university graduates, not even diploma holders, so I can appreciate how difficult life could be without having a good education in Singapore. I was therefore extremely determined to make it into a local university to pursue my passion and make my loved ones proud. My existence revolved solely around work and studies, with no time left for socializing whatsoever.

During my second year in polytechnic, my dad was diagnosed with cancer. Being the main breadwinner, it meant he was going to be out of action for quite a while; my mum - stressed as she was subsequently took up two jobs to help ends meet. Thankfully, with curative surgery (to remove the tumour) and chemotherapy his cancer went into remission. Just when I thought the worst was over, my mum came down with cancer too a year later. At that point in time I was heavily involved in my FYP as well as embarking on a mandatory internship stint. Upon receiving the bad news, I nearly crumbled. Any motivation to study, to do anything in fact, dissipated momentarily as I kept thinking of simply quitting my studies altogether and joining the workforce ASAP to help keep my family afloat.

I felt tremendously miserable and was at a total loss. I did not confide in friends, for I feared they might shower me with pity or look at me in a different way. I hid everything in my heart. I refused to cry and tried so damn very hard to put on a strong front for the sake of my family. It took me weeks to pull myself together again, somehow I managed and continued to push on thereafter.

Eventually my mum got well again, I earned a diploma with merit and was accepted into my dream university. Even better still, I landed a scholarship which will fully fund my tertiary education (plus there's a job guaranteed upon graduation).

The overall point of my sharing? Is that life is a mix of sweet and bitter; no matter what you are going through now, don't give up.The rainy days will be over soon enough!


I studied under the candlelight and spent many nights taking care of my sick mum

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