I rarely depend on anyone or take any type of assistance from others that is aimed to make life a bit easier for myself. In regards to emotional support, my son’s needs, bills, transportation, and other personal necessities, they are solely my responsibility. Due to conditions preceding my adulthood, I strongly believe you can’t depend on anyone but yourself.
Every since I was old enough to realize or remember the circumstances surrounding my life, I have acquired a strong feeling of independence. With the unfortunate luck of being born to a soon to be drug addicted mother along with a father who would be incarcerated for twenty years of my life. I have no heartwarming memories of loving moments where I was able to depend on my biological parents for anything, besides an annual Christmas card and a long distance phone call from the penitentiary. These two major events I believe laid the foundation for my belief.
Around the age of about two or three years old my grandmother stepped in to take care of myself and two others sisters; one older and one younger. Life at grandmas was okay but not the best emotionally. I could depend on grandma to keep clothes on my back, a roof over my head, and food in my stomach. On the other hand I could also depend on grandma to continually remind me of my situation and of the fact that, the responsibility of caring for her drug addicted child’s children was not supposed to rest squarely on her shoulders. All the nagging and bickering was done in a very unproductive way towards my younger sister and I. The only other thing I depended on grandma for was to drive me away, and that’s exactly what she did, literally.
At the age of 14 my younger sister and I ran away from a life in my grandmother’s home for good. I had no one to depend on at the time and I knew in my heart I was the only one my younger sister was depending on as we encountered life on the streets. We both were caught on the run about a year and a half later. I was shipped off to a number of lock down facilities along with a few foster homes. When I turned seventeen I was allowed to return to Wichita. As I concentrated on completing my high school education while working full time and maintaining a household through “Independent Living”. I still had no one to depend on, which was not surprising at all.
When I say I believe you can only depend on yourself and no one else, it is not because I have a sense of arrogance about myself or that I am unappreciative of what individuals have done for me throughout my life. However, events in life I had no control over, pertaining to my parents actions, and some situations I brought upon myself by running away from grandma, left nothing or anyone for me to depend on but myself, period. So from the knowledge I have retained through my personal life experiences along with a feeling of Individualism that have both become a part of my character. I will always receive more comfort when I don’t depend on others. Also on behalf of the undependable foundation laid by my parents and the feelings of I guilt I was made to experience while depending on others. The only person I will always have in my corner to fall back on is me and in a way that makes me proud of myself.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.