I have lived in the same house my whole life. It is painted ancient white and deep forest green. Outside there is a large cement porch with a wooden swing made for thinking. Inside you can smell scrambled eggs and bubblegum toothpaste. To the right there is a cozy living room connecting to the red, white, and blue patriotic kitchen. Down a tiny hallway there is a single bathroom and two bedrooms. In this little house I live with five other people: my mom, older sister, younger brother, younger sister, and my cousin. I love my family and I love my house. I never once wished to live in a mansion or even a slightly larger home. I am happy being intimate with my precious family and I never minded making them my first priority.
One recent summer night I was sitting on my large porch and a lot started to cross my foggy mind. Have I ever been my first priority? As minutes turned into hours I tried to accept the denials that were covering me. Most of my life revolves around the lives of others. For the first time I wanted to be my main focus. I made my own decision of moving out and for the first time, I believed in myself.
After a few days I found the courage to tell my mother I was moving. It was difficult to explain my intentions without hurting her feelings, but I knew in time she would understand. I began to clean out my bedroom and pack all my memories. I knew the transition would be challenging, but I was ready.
Sharing a bedroom with two other hormonal teenagers has not been easy. Privacy has never existed in my world. I could never own a diary, go to the bathroom without another person interrupting, quietly do homework, or even keep a secret. Vague moments of silence were always savored and seconds of alone time were always invaded. I hardly had chances to spend time with myself. Without these chances it was impossible to focus on what I really wanted.
Now I finally have my first own room. It is decorated with aquamarine curtains that match my bed sheets I personally picked out. There are dozens of pictures surrounding the walls revealing my life. I have my own desk with my organized homework and text books laying on top of it. Posters of my favorite bands and movie stars cover the ceiling. The room smells, looks, tastes, feels, and sounds like me. It is my own atmosphere that provides me privacy. In the room I feel as if I could do anything. It was the start of focusing on my needs and beginning to confidently believe in myself.
In my old house I lived with my single mother struggling to raise five kids. She was in constant need of help and support. I was always needed to baby-sit, clean the house, comfort my mom, help with homework, run errands, and the list goes on. My needs were consistently put on hold because my family needed help to function. I began to think I would never have the chance to live my own life. When would I learn how to find my inner belief?
I realized I have had it all along. I was locked inside this tiny house keeping all my insecurities close and blocking my freedom of finding myself. A lot has changed since I have moved out. I am focused on my future and determined to grasp it no matter who or what stomps in my way. The most crucial thing that has changed was finding the belief in myself. For the first time ever, I can do anything. This I believe.
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