This I Believe

Kathleen - Charlotte, North Carolina
Entered on September 20, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: family

Living out of a suitcase for various lengths of time has made me believe in the importance of family value. I first realized how important family was when we relocated to New Zealand from Canada and everything we owned was on a boat for six weeks. That’s when I understood how little I really needed. Suddenly I found myself surrounded by blank walls, bare floors and empty cupboards, oh, and those people I live with.

Maybe I overlooked them before. Could they possibly have something to tell me, that before I was ignorant to? Are their stories worth listening to? My dad dropped out of high school and moved to Florida to race dirt bikes when he was 18. When he told me that, on one of those possessionless nights, something clicked. Maybe the reason he pushed me to be such a good student had something to do with the fact that for a while, he wasn’t. He did, however, finish high school. He has my mom to thank for that. He then went to University, and on to a job that brought him around the world.

Then there was mom. Of course I always loved and respected mom, but she was after all, just that… my mom. I realized something, though. Mom and I are close, very unlike my mom and her mother. I know that no matter how bad I screw up, I can tell her, whereas my mom was 5 months pregnant before she confessed to her mom.

She and I have now hung out in ten cities, in five countries, on three continents. Seeing as New Zealand is half way around the world, an eighteen hour plane trip, with a 12 hour time difference and my best friend was almost a day away, mom really was there when I needed her.

So, when my parents boxed up my life, put it on a boat, and mercilessly moved me from place to place, I believe it was worth it. I now have a greater understanding of the people I will inevitably be linked to for the duration of my under aged life.