My name is Ayaan Siddiqui, and I am an American. People may say it cannot be the case. But in reality, I am. The floor I walk on is American. The walls I touch are American. The trees that have given me ample shade all my life are American. Those neighbors and friends that I hold so dear to my heart, that have made me into the individual I am today, all call themselves American. I have lived my life as an American.
But in 5 years, I won’t be.
In 5 years, I will be 21.
This is my unique story. The story that tells of a boy who lives in one world, but is told that he is from another. Everytime I come back home from a vacation or a trip and get asked “What is the purpose of your visit?” by my fellow American, a page of the story is written. Everytime I have to renew my visa to stay in the country as if it's like paying off a recurring debt, a page is written. Everytime I talk to my parents about the future of my life as if it’s the backwards, medieval story of an exile being banished from the land of his belonging, a page is written. And ultimately, these pages compile into a tragedy. I don't want my life to be a tragedy. I’m sixteen. I just got my braces off. I don’t want my life to be a tragedy.