A Time to Grow Up

sarah - USA
Entered on October 21, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: family, setbacks
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I am still amazed at how perfect families seem on the outside. It is as if there is a huge facade that everyone wears to hide what goes on behind closed doors. I know I did. My family seemed perfect. My two brothers, my parents, and me. A full house it was. Life was great. I was always happy, always willing to spend time with my family, always there. This lasted until my senior year of high school. I began noticing my mom’s drinking habits increasing and her participation in family events spiraling downward. I saw all the drunken arguments, even participated, yelling and screaming at her. Why would a mother do this to her family?

I know why. After the split in October and the awkward 18th birthday in May, graduation came. As I was standing on stage, taking that one last breath before making the speech I had typed over and over, it hit me. Her drinking was because she felt like she had no other way out. She ran the wrong direction and this was a test for me. I became an adult. I helped take care of my brothers, helped with dinner, and did pretty much whatever I could for my family.

I stood on that stage and realized the past year of my life had led up to this moment. I had grown up. I left my selfish, teenage self behind and discovered who I really am.

My mother is my best friend. We have made amends, and I do not regret a single event. She helped shape me into an adult – an adult with a conscience and the independence to succeed. This I believe: the moment will come when everyone grows up.