¬We sit down at a fancy Italian restaurant and the waiter hands us menus that after glancing at I realize are in a language foreign to me. In an effort to seem intellectual and mature, I feign understanding as I pretend to read it. After a few minutes of my charade, I look up and my mother casually lifts her eyes to meet mine. “You’ll like the Pollo Romano, Suzanne,” she says and then continues her diligent exploration of the dinner choices. I begin my pretense again, acting as though I will use her suggestion as just another option among the many dishes I am interested in, but I know I will order it.
Rebellion and capriciousness are all in my nature at seventeen but I believe that regardless of how hard I try to resist their efforts, my parents usually do know what’s best.
My inability to choose the right dinner entrée sprouts from my inability to be bound to just one decision. I suffer from the same issue when trying to determine which college is right for me or which professional field will make me happy and successful. I constantly find myself between two or three options, unable to settle on one in fear that I will be disappointed and regretful when I taste the raviolis that I wish were chicken parmesan or I end up a lawyer when I wish I were a chemist. Maybe it’s her motherly instincts or maybe it’s that she knows me better than anyone else, but my mother is somehow always aware of which I will prefer. I heed her advice; however, I know that if for any reason I am unsatisfied with the dish, or the college, or the boy or the career, my father will guide me, no questions asked. My father knows when I am still hungry and takes the liberty to order me big slice of cheesecake for dessert, something that will ease the repercussions of my poor choices. Sometimes, although my parents know I will prefer the raviolis, the college closer to home, or the more well rounded boy, they allow me to discover and explore new things for myself. I order the quail, fly out to Tahiti to take a year off, and date an ex-convict. My investigations have forced me into every which direction and caused me to grow as a person and refine the foundations instilled in me. No matter where I travel or what I experience, my parents are the basis of my morale, and when it comes down to it, my parents usually do know what’s best. And this, I will always believe.
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