A Small Snag Lasts Forever

Kara - Ann Arbor, Michigan
Entered on November 18, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: family, integrity

Relationships are like sweaters. They keep us warm while the world around us is bitter cold. The ones we truly treasure are made of the finest cashmere, which we delicately take care of in order to keep them from snagging. Unfortunately, there are those few times when you forget about their fragile manner, and snag them nonetheless. You can try to hide or repair the snag, but it will always be there. Despite your efforts, the once uniform sweater remains torn and unfixable forever.

I have always been a people pleaser, searching for the approving head nod and smile saying, “yes, you have done something right.” I hate letting people down, especially the ones that mean the most to me such as my family and closest friends. I am loyal and would bend my back for anyone, which I believe has allowed for me to build many strong and trustworthy relationships with others.

Among these strong relationships, the one that truly means the most to me is the relationship that I have with my parents. Throughout most of my life, it was our unbroken trust that I highly valued and adored. We held similar values, which kept me grounded in the unstable world surrounding me in my high school halls. I knew that my absence from all of the teenage craziness was well worth it, because it was pleasing to my parents, which made me happy. All was going well until midway through my senior year of high school. Through curiosity and the anticipation of the “college experience,” I decided to test the waters, leaving behind the values that I once so highly regarded. I fell into the party scene, looking for the approval of my peers behind the back of my parents. I thought I had it all figured out, I was balancing my social and home life well and thought that the two worlds would never intersect. However, one night they did collide and that moment has forever changed my life.

I was over at a friend’s house from my school, having a good time and at the end of the night I received a ride home. As I walked through the front door, my parents were sitting there waiting for my return, but I was in no condition to talk to them. They had caught me red handed. The next morning I didn’t want to get out of bed, I didn’t want to see the disappointment on their faces. Our trust was shattered and that was the part that hurt me the most, and still hurts me today. When I finally walked downstairs to talk to them about the previous night, I was scared of the consequences and what they might say. However, those were not nearly as painful as the reality of the trust that I had just broken. I could handle the restrictions, but their questioning of my every action was so hard for me to accept. I had gone from the seemingly perfect child to a deceiving daughter, and I would give anything to have my previous status back.

Still today, I can feel that small sense of doubt as I talk to them about my personal issues. They still do not fully trust me, and have informed me that it is going to take a long time to build the trust back to where it was before. I know though, that no matter what they say, there will always be that lingering thought questioning my trustworthiness. I have snagged the thread of trust that once tightly held our relationship together, and through much effort I will be able to mend most of the harm done. However, I know that no matter how hard I try; our relationship will never be the fine cashmere sweater that it used to be. This I believe.