This I Believe

Sloane - Long Beach, California
Entered on January 25, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30
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Independence: A Way of Life?

I strongly believe in independence. There are many different definitions for independence. I’m not talking about the kind that states you are not bound to a certain political party, but the kind of independence that says you do not require or rely on something else. I think my independence was one of the greatest things I have ever been given in my life or should I say, it’s the greatest thing I have taken out of life. The day your father tells you he has been having an affair with another woman is a day that changes your life forever. All you can do now is sit and watch as your family is torn apart piece by piece for the next few months as everyone tries to figure out what the next step is. Twenty years of marriage is supposed to be a blissful time, but can all come crumbling down when you find out the infidelities your partner has been committing behind your back. How could anyone possibly want to stay with someone who has lost every ounce of trust you once had in them? Well, just ask my mom, the day she decided to stay with my father was the day I embarked on my own journey through life, an emotionally independent journey.

That was the day that changed my life and my personality forever. Nothing seemed the way it was supposed to, my world was turned upside down and I couldn’t figure out who I could trust and who would just hurt me in the end. One thing I have learned is that ones’ heart is a very fragile thing and should be treated as such. There is never anyway of knowing who to let in and who to block out but when you don’t trust very many people, it’s hard to let others in. Independence can also include knowing who you are and what makes you happy. Once you know that about yourself, you need to find the people who bring out the best in you and avoid the people that bring out the worst.

Even though I am so young, I feel that I have been through a lot compared to other kids my age. I understand how hard it can be to see your parents unhappy and fighting all the time but sometimes, as in my situation, I would rather my parents not be together than be together and unhappy. Although I still maintain a relationship with my parents, there isn’t a day when I don’t feel as if I should be thriving for something better, like a deeper sense of independence.