“Del Kon tee”

This essay answers how the hardships we endure are simply indicators of the journey that is ahead of us.

Del Kon tee. Everything takes time.

Whispered and spoken to me in hundreds of instances, it took me seventeen years to comprehend the essence and purpose of this phrase. Surrounded by sounds that many children my age have only heard in war movies, I never envisioned what life had in store for me. I was born in an era that brought dismay to many Liberians, and spent all my life realizing that my experiences were some of life’s harshest – experiences that not only changed my life but the lives of all the people involved. The memories of my early childhood are gloomy and filled with anguish. However, it is an enigma to me that despite all the hardships I endured as a child in Liberia, the only thought of these experiences brings tears of joy and happiness to my eyes.

I was born on January 4, 1990 in Monrovia, Liberia. Unfortunately, I was born at a time when no parent wanted to have a child, a time when people were killed for the tribe in which they belonged. This period I speak of is the first Liberian Civil War, which was fought between the different ethnic groups of Liberia. In May 1990, my mother was killed by the rebels in the war. Raising me was extremely difficult for my father. We lived in constant, unimaginable fear. My...

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