I sit and anticipate my mother’s phone call around six o’clock every Monday- Friday after her long day of work. Reflecting everyday about how lucky I am to posses all the materialistic items I have wanted while being able to attend college, I think about my mother’s strenuous effort to make all my dreams possible. Independence is an essential key to life, and by growing up in a single parent home and viewing the hardworking ethics and qualities possessed my mother, I believe an individual should embrace their independence.
Independence is being able to manage one’s own concerns and beliefs, and being able to provide for oneself. It is being able to live without the command, assistance, brace, and influence of others. It is being able to form one’s own conclusions, and to not be swayed by the decisions of a majority. While living throughout my adolescent years, I seldom listened to other’s inclinations. I found myself desiring to make my own decisions without listening to the influence of others. My understanding of the excellence of independence had stumbled upon me at a youthful age. Being able to recognize the beauty of this characteristic has composed me into the person I am today.
While growing up under the control of my mother, I have inherited numerous qualities that have influenced the growth of my mentality. With my parent’s divorce at age five and now living thousands of miles apart, my mother has had to support and provide for two children on her own. Without the financial and mental support of a father figure in our lives, I am now able to recognize how strong a person my mother has become. Even though she has embraced being single, her road to solidarity consisted of harsh experiences that had tremendous physical and financial effects on our family.
Although the memory of my parent’s marriage is a blur considering I was only a child while they remained together, there are a select number of vivid events that I can recall. My father was a stubborn man. He was often overtaken by the power of addiction. His addictions came between a loving relationship with my mother and raising my brother and me. Reminiscing back to many nights of my father’s supposedly long days at work, images start to race through my mind. While recollecting thoughts, I am able to perceive my father arriving at the house late every night, at around nine o’clock. With his jumbled words and incoherentness, I was never able to thoroughly piece together the occurrences. Being so young, I never realized what was actually going on. However on so many nights, I saw how upset my mother was when my father entered the house stumbling under the influence.
My mother remained strong coping with my father’s verbal abuse and physical dishonor. She stood by his side doing everything in her power to give him the loving support necessary for our family to survive a healthy recovery. She consistently pushed to keep our family close and create bonds that would forever hold us together. With my father going from job to job while spending family money on addictions, my mother had to work extra long days in order to make sure the bills were paid.
Understanding the addiction of the man she loved gives me a great respect towards her, although she could only take so much as the circumstances only worsened. With my mother always being loyal to her friends and family, I realized the fact that she would be better off on her own. Yet, she stuck with him. However, the final straw ending their existence as a couple came when my mother could no longer trust her security.
With a massive savings account developed by both of my parents, my mother was sure there would always be money to provide her children with the needs, wants, and the education we needed. Nevertheless, the money was evaporating all too quickly. My father’s habits and addictions grew out of hand. With a considerably large amount of money completely missing from their account, my mother knew it was time to take charge of the situation. With every day, wonders of what the money was being spent on, divorce was a protection and an act my mother saw inevitable so that my brother and I would grow up with a proper lifestyle.
Separation was the only way my mother saw out of the marriage. It would be a way to detach us from the unhealthy lifestyle my father was living. She knew that there was a better example to be set for her children and divorce was the only way to reach the standard. Going through many hardships and financial problems, my mother eventually overcame the troublesome issues taking place.
After many years, my mother was finally back on her feet. Throughout high school, my brother and I were on all star teams in Nashville, TN. With my brother in ice hockey and myself in cheerleading, my mother was required to make the hour drive four times a week. After her eight hour days at work, going from her job to then driving us, her exhaustion only worsened throughout the week. However my mother would do anything to satisfy her children even though there is no one else to help her out.
Without the financial support from a second income and the college tuition of two children on her back, she is still able to be at a point free from support and command of others. Being the one person who has influenced my ambitions in life, my mother has taught me how to guide and support myself throughout my existence. My mother’s strength and drive has brought her to show many individuals how independence is an essential part of life.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.