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International Student Essay: Facing My Fears

Monday | November 11, 2013 | by Moses Dooyum Tingir

When I was a little boy in primary school, I failed a mathematics test. My mathematics teacher was so annoyed with me and flogged me 20 strokes with the cane. As a result, I became upset and stopped coming to school for a whole semester. Eventually, my dad had to transfer me to another school. But one thing continued to disturb me for a long time: Any time the mathematics teacher entered the class, I would become uncomfortable. I was afraid to make another mistake and be flogged. As a result, I started avoiding my mathematics lessons for the rest of my stay in primary school.

This affected my later life in secondary school as I developed a phobia for mathematics. The end result was that I failed mathematics twice and couldn’t gain admission into a university. My dad finally hired a home teacher in mathematics for me so that I could pass my School Certificate exams. I later gained admission into a university but I was not happy because my classmates were well ahead of me, and graduated before me. I also couldn’t study the course I wanted to because my mathematics grade was too low.

In conclusion, I’ve now realized, although too late, that you don’t have to avoid your fears; you should instead face them to overcome them. Running away from your fear only makes your problem worse. Like the saying, “he who fights and runs away, lives to fight another day,“ I also had to come back to face mathematics before I was able to further my studies.

I have learned that when you overcome a problem, you gain more strength to face bigger problems later in life. But when you shy away from them, you become weaker to face even smaller problems that you may encounter in life.

Tingir Moses Dooyum

Moses Dooyum Tingir is a Psychology Student at Benue State University in Nigeria.

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