How Growing Up Changed Me

2 February 2019

How Growing Up Changed Me

Growing up, I lived in a world where a “tough time” was climbing the hill from the lake to my grandma’s house. As a child, I was surrounded by dozens of people who loved and took such amazing care of me. These people also loved and took care of eachother. People from all over, blood related or not, came together and we created our own family. Instead of two uncles being protective of me I had 8. Instead of one Mom loving me and comforting me, I had three. The list could go on. Growing up, I thought a hard time was scraping my stomach up on the Tennessee grass when the family got together and made a makeshift slip and slide down that steep hill. I never knew what a “tough time” actually was, until I had to grow up.

In the midst of this amazing and forever memorable childhood, my parents got divorced, and my Dad had to move away.

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Considering I was three years old and the only thing that really could keep my attention was my purple Wiggles guitar, I never knew why they were not together or what it meant.I had to go back and forth between houses until my Dad’s house was 1,114 miles away. When I was four years old, my mom met someone new. This someone new ended up being added to this jumbled up mix of a family of mine, and being my second father. This man raised me and was there for me when my Dad couldn’t be, and for that I’m forever grateful. Eventually my step dad was invited to our slip and slide parties and helped me climb that neverending hill up to Grandma’s house. The way I saw it, I lost one Dad and then I gained an equally amazing one. I was okay, until I had to grow up.

Thirteen years, nine houses, four schools, and three different states later, my big jumbled up family drifted. My Mom, Step Dad, little brother, and I ended up in a small town in Florida. After losing his job while living in our small town Tennessee home, we were forced to relocate to Missouri. This played a part in me having to grow up. A new school, a new house, new faces, and no big hills or slip and slide parties. My family was struggling, and being who I am I didnt want to show that I was too. I had to grow up. I made new friends, I put a smile on my face, and I started to become independent at around 10 years old. A year later, we had to relocate, again. This time to Florida. I had to say goodbye to the family of friends I was trying to build, and start over, again. New faces, new school, new home. I developed a tough skin, I learned to always support my family and never stray from those who I love so much, and love me equally to no end. Despite all the hurt and change, I see now that this made me a better person. Three houses and a transition from elementary, to middle, then to high school later, we are in 2018. Despite family struggles through the years, I felt as if I was finally able to take a deep breath and feel relaxed; no more change. I was wrong. My idea of “no change” slowly vanished as my parents bagan to fight more and more. Six years of straight fighting turned to divorce, probably ending up to be the best. Despite the hardships that this brought for us all, it made us, me,stronger.

At seventeen years old, I finally know what a “tough time” is. Living a life where I have lost not one but two dads to divorce, it has forced me to really grow up. Even though it was undeniably tough, this taught me how to be a stronger and more loving person. It showed me what the real world is like outside of slip and slide parties and a “tough” walk up a hill.It taught me skills I never thought I would learn until I was married with babies of my own. I’m not going to lie, it wasn’t a cake walk. The loss of sleep and being burnt out from going to school, working, then helping take care of everything at home, had me sick almost every other week. There have absolutely been ups and downs throughout this whole situation. Its three months later, and both of my parents seem happier now. Being able to see my mom finally genuinely smile warms my heart and makes me know I will never regret helping her find herself again after another loss. Seeing her and even my step-Dad finally happy makes everything I sacrificed worth it. Without having to deal with every bump in the road of my crazy discombobulated life, I wouldn’t be who I am today. Having to grow up has made me stronger, it proved to me that I can do anything I can put my mind to. This divorce has not only prepared me for my future, but also has pushed me to focus on my own success. I had to grow up, and I’m finally okay with that.

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How Growing Up Changed Me. (2019, Feb 10). Retrieved October 18, 2019, from
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