This I Believe

Alina - Marietta, Georgia
Entered on December 17, 2007
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: family

I believe in saying goodbye. Everyone encounters a challenging farewell at least once in their lives; I had to face this nearly impossible task as a young child. My first experience was saying goodbye to someone I loved, my dad. Everything I once knew in the comfort of my happy family was shattered once the final decision was made that my mom, little brother, and I were moving to Florida, and my dad was moving hours away to Georgia. Divorce was something that could never have happened to my family, I thought, but I was soon struck by reality and brutal truth as my mom announced our family’s fate.

We arrived in complete chaos at the airport with my dad desperately chasing behind us to say goodbye to me and my brother. I was only seven years old at the time, and my brother and I were crying as my mom pleaded and pushed us through the gates. I knew that my dad had committed some kind of terrible sin, and I couldn’t risk losing him all my respect for him, so I obeyed my mom and stumbled into the gate’s hallway as our name echoed through the room: “Rim to gate A18 for takeoff.” However, my brother broke free of my mom’s grasp and ran towards our dad. My mom, now hysterical, tore my brother away from his dad, and as I was watching from a distance, I felt a strange tugging at my chest. I had never felt this kind of pain before. One of the most treasured aspects in my life was being stripped away from me right before my very eyes. It was as if the walls were caving in and the sand within my hands quickly seeping through; I was screaming, but no one could hear me. My brother was begging for our dad, my mom in tears, our family in ruins, my life shattered. I was left heartbroken. We were all completely helpless. After the long, terrifying hour spent at the cold airport, we were on our way to Florida. That was the beginning of the most heart wrenching goodbye that I might possibly ever have to face.

Letting someone go and parting for your separate ways is not an easy task, but it is a duty that we must all face with courage and hope. My father will not and has not been the husband and dad that he once promised our family, but I know that there are bigger and better plans in store for us. I have a plan and purpose for my life and part of that is having to say goodbye to those that I love.