—A. P. J. Abdul Kalam
It is not easy to fit in. In the novella, Through the Tunnel, by Dorris Lessing, the boy Jerry struggled to fit in with the French boys. He never felt that he was truly apart of the group and he tried everything to prove his worth.
Again and again he rose, took a big chestful of air, and went down. Again and again he groped over the surface of the rock, feeling it, almost hugging it in the desperate need to find the entrance. And then, once, while he was clinging to the black wall, his knees came up and shot his feet out forward and they met no obstacle. He had found the hole.
This quote shows how far Jerry is willing to go just prove that he is worthy to be a part of the French boys’ group. “He cried openly, fists in his eyes. There was no one to see him, and he cried himself out.” Jerry felt defeated and sad when he was left out of the group for his inability to dive. He never gave up however, and kept improving his diving skills and his lung capacity. “Again his nose bled at night, and his mother insisted on his coming with her the next day.” Jerry was injured severely by his foolishness, but he insisted on trying. Finally one day, he was able to dive through the tunnel; no one saw it, and he did it anyways. He didn’t tell anyone about his great abilities and instead kept quiet about. “Mummy,” he said, “I can stay under water for two minutes — three minutes, at least… It came bursting out of him.” Jerry proved nothing in the end, he did not prove his worth to the French boys, he did not impress his mother, but he impressed himself. In the end Jerry overcame the challenges and became a man.