"We can't buy it" were the words that hung on to me throughout my life. A family of five, living in Los Angeles, with only my father working, we knew our situation was critical. I grew up hearing the cry of my siblings when there was no food and the screaming of frustration from my parents because they left bills unpaid. As the oldest, I felt uneasy and learned that necessity is real. The fridge was a constant torment every time my siblings opened it and saw nothing. Undergoing months without paying the rent, we managed to push forward and as a family we grew stronger.
My life was defined after one night I heard my mom in complete desolation crying, because money was scarce and food was running out. The hurtful tears of a mother with nothing left but to cry. I was young but I understood her sufferings and I knew the difficulties we were going through. I saw the tears drop from her eyes, I walked up to her and told her, “Don’t worry I will buy you a house and take care of you.” In the moment, I didn’t understand the gravity of my words but, since the day I said these powerful words to her, my goals and aspirations have been set. I was able to understand that we needed help, and so I became determined to reach out to others for help. We continued to overcome the depression that reigned in my house with some help from our friends and family.
Through these experiences, I was able to find refuge and motivation with my friends, mentors and counselors at Fulfillment Fund. This program has allowed me to dream, but also make them a reality. I was able to learn that college is a door for a better future. Fulfillment Fund has given me the privilege and opportunity to be part of college events, presentations and overnight trips. Everyone part of this team has enlightened my world with advice, love and care that became present in my life when I most needed guidance. From late night workshops with counselors to overnight trips to colleges, everything given to me has prepared me for a better future. Fulfillment Fund not only educated me but has also considered my family in everything. Events like Destination College have informed and educated my parents for college and have assisted them with scholarship and financial information. Through these dimmest moments of my life, Fulfillment Fund was by my side and gave me their help as I pursued my college education.
My experiences at home have shaped my dreams and aspirations because now as a man, my hunger for success is more than ever. I want to go to college to help create a window of opportunity for a better life, not only for me but for my family and friends. In the darkest moments of my life many people disappeared and many stayed to help us get through. I believe getting an education is the best way to bring my family and myself out of struggles to a better life. I want to get my degree and conquer my past with something better than "good enough."
Milton began attending Saint John’s University in fall 2012.