This I Believe

Shelby - Hollywood, Florida
Entered on October 29, 2007
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: family, setbacks

As a child my grandparents were inseparable; at least I thought they were. I can remember going to their house, making popcorn, drinking diet coke, and lying in their bed with them while watching soap operas. They were like my second parents, and in front of me they performed a little show called “love”, an act in which behind closed doors I would come to realize was just a cover up for how they truly felt for each other.

I can clearly remember the day that I found out my grandparents were getting divorced as if it were yesterday. It was a rainy day and my mom called me into her room and said, “We need to talk.” At that moment I realized something was wrong, she seemed agitated and upset and then she told me that my grandparents, her father and step mother were separating. At first I thought she was kidding until she started hysterically crying. My mother is one of the strongest people I know, someone who never lets people see her emotions. For her to cry, unfortunately told me she was telling the truth. We sat for hours just the two of us, bawling like babies.

The next day when I walked into my grandparents’ condo and saw my grandmother’s things all stacked up in cartons, I knew for sure this was really happening. It was a wake-up call, waking up from a bad nightmare that was dreadfully true. That night my tears poured down my face like a fountain, as I reminisced about the times I have spent with them, how happy they made my family, and how content they had seemed to me.

For months I started to feel a sense of loathing towards my grandpa. What could he have done so badly to break a family up, or have my grandma leave him, or had he been lying to me this whole time when I thought he loved my grandma?

Over time I have come to realize that my grandpa wasn’t an awful person, and we currently are now talking. I’ve recognized that it was my grandma’s choice to leave my grandpa and that she was the one unhappy in the relationship. My grandparents were twenty years apart and they each wanted different things in life. My grandpa wanted to settle down and my grandma wanted to go out and party. I respect my grandma’s decision to leave my grandpa because she shouldn’t live the rest of her life miserable, but live it the way she wanted to. I was so egotistical about my grandparent’s divorce that I never realized how anyone else felt but me. I believe that when you are selfish you don’t observe all sides of the situation, only what you want to see.