The purpose of this Endurance paper was to meet the character (Ishmael Beah) from the book I read: A Long Way Gone . Also, to become another person, to become empty and to define who you are.

I chose to connect with Ishmael Beah because we have similar life experiences, the way how we got to USA, the way we go through our lives and how we are separated from our families.

I am proud of that today I am living in Chicago, USA with my whole family. I am proud that I can live everyday happily and never heard anymore a gun shooting and voices of people suffering. I am proud that I can go to school when a lot of children cannot go to school. I am also proud of being who I am everyday.

I learned “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.”
― Mahatma Gandhi.

Here is my A Long Way Poem

One night I walked into the book A  Long Way Gone
I met Ishmael Beah in the dark forest.
We talked about our similar experiences, where we come from.

I live in four worlds: truth, hatred, peace and experience.
How about everyone not lying and not hating each other?
How would our world be like?

Ishmael Beah,
What is your world like now?

“These days I live in three worlds:
my dreams, and the experiences of my new life,
which trigger memories from the past.” –Ishmael Beah, A Long Way Gone

You (Ishmael Beah) and I learn our lives from the travel path.
Our experiences are not like others’
Because our experiences come from our own pain.

“In the sky there are always answers and explanations for everything:
every pain, every suffering, joy and confusion.” –Ishmael Beah, A Long Way Gone

What do we always carry when people hate us?
What do they hate about us or Why do they hate us?
We can fix what they hate about us,
But we cannot fix why they hate us.

“Some nights the sky wept stars
that quickly floated and disappeared into the darkness
before our wishes could meet them. ” –Ishmael Beah, A Long Way Gone

“I had my gun now, and as the corporal always said,
‘This gun is your source of power in these times.
It will protect you and provide you all you need,
if you know how to use it well’.” –Ishmael Beah, A Long Way Gone

You need to use your weapon with your heart
Only your heart  knows how to use the weapon,
Because your heart is your weapon.

The bullets from the gun don’t know
Love and hate,
Bad and good,
Happiness and sorrow,
Children and adults,
Families and enemies…

A weapon depends on a person who uses it.
If you don’t know how to use it,
It will be used against you.

“Weapons are an important factor in war,
but not the decisive one;
it is man and not materials that counts”
(Mao Tse-Tung)

In your story, the music becomes your savior and your security.
It becomes your friends, beyond it is what you are passionate about.
It makes you smile when you hear the beats.
It makes you brave and makes you forget your pain.
It shows who you are in front of your enemies.

“You’ve gotta dance like there’s nobody watching,
Love like you’ll never be hurt,
Sing like there’s nobody listening,
And live like it’s heaven on earth.”
― William W. Purkey

When I do what I am passionate about
I never get hungry and tired,
Because the more we do it, the more we learn it.
The more we learn it,
The more we know how to enjoy it.

Ishmael, I would like to share with you
The most inspiring quote in my life,
Whenever I am going to do something
that makes me think twice.

“You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.”
― Mae West

Smart and good thinkers don’t say words a lot
But when they say
The world opens eyes,
If the Sun rises, it never sets again.
If the Moon and Stars appear in the night
The night becomes the brightest night.

Just like you say in your story book,
When you run in the night
The moon and the stars lead you where to go.

“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.”
― Mahatma Gandhi

You and me can live as this quote says from now on
We are who we are by what we do today
we believe we will be still alive
by what we have learned today
we dream with how far our possibilities lead us