By Marilynn Wong:

I didn’t used to believe that hard work would pay off in the end. I had always given up on anything that would be challenging for me. I never tried my best to figure out the solutions. I also didn’t believe in myself. But now I’ve learned that hard work helps you get through life. With hard work and determination, you can be successful and you can achieve anything as long as you keep trying. Sometimes hard work won’t pay off in the end but you can still learn from your mistakes. Hard work can be achieved it you push yourself to the limits.

I believe in hard work, especially when it comes to tennis. In my freshman year, I joined the tennis team with no experience. I became the absolute worst player ever and I was ranked near the second to the bottom of the JV team. Whenever a ball was tossed to me, I would hit it in the wrong positions. The tennis ball would fly out of the steel fence and hit the roof tops of the surrounding houses with a loud bang. I tried to improve, but I couldn’t see the benefits in trying hard. Being on the team was frustrating and tiring. Some of the girls on the team would point at me and say, “OMG! Look at her hits. She sucks and shouldn’t be on the team,” or they would say “Hey, it’s the crazy baseball hitter!” Their words had made me think negatively and I thought about quitting the team. When I told my mom, she said, “You need to keep on practicing and work hard to improve to get better. You shouldn’t care about what others say and stay focused on playing.”

From that day, I realized that I needed to keep practicing and never give up on anything I like. I attended tennis practice four days in a row until the season was over. By the end of the season, I improved. I continued to practice every week and everyday during the summer. As a sophomore, I moved from the worst to the third best on the JV team. I was disappointed because I didn’t make it in varsity because I had practiced very hard to get better. The coach didn’t see the dedication and skills in me. He said, “ Marilynn, you gotta show me your dedication of playing tennis. It seems like you are always away from the tennis group. You may be placed on the tennis team next year but you have to show me you are serious.”

I was shocked because the coach didn’t see that I was working very hard to improve on my hits and game. He also had favorites that he placed them before me even though I had beaten them in a tennis challenge. I felt like flames had been lightened inside on me. I had many thoughts of quitting the team because the coach was unfair and he would never place me on the varsity team. I had remembered what my mother had said to me so I decided to not care about what the coach thinks and practice even harder. Even though he couldn’t see that I was dedicated and serious of being on the team, I was motivated to work even harder to improve and hopefully make the team next year. . Also, if I had quited the team all of my hard work would be lost. Every day after school, I still would sacrifice my time to go to the practices from 3:30-5:00p.m. in the hot and fuming sun, even if I had loads of homework.

Anyone can reach success by hard work. With hard work, there will be more opportunities and help me lead to better results in life. There may be challenges along the way but, hard work actually pays off. I learned to never give up and keep on going no matter how hard it is. Therefore I believe hard work will pay off in the end.