When I was at the age of 7, I experience a change in my life. Although I thought my whole world was crashing down around me, I later learned that this experience was only a little speedbump in my life. At an early age, my parents were going through a divorce after 15 years of marriage and three kids later. When my parents spilt, my sisters and I lived with our mom. This transition caused a rift between my father and us kids. We were unable to see our dad as much as we use to and his attempts to see us began to slowly stop. Even though this experience seemed like the worst thing that could happened, it ended up being for the best and I was able to mature greatly because of my parent's divorce.
Out of the three children, I was the middle child. And as a middle child, I was often overlooked. At the time, I hated now being the center of attention anymore, but I realized that it helped me to become a very tough young lady and it gave me the opportunity to teach myself how to handle my emotions in a positive way. My older sister was 17 and was pregnant with her first kid, which made her not unable to be around much, and my little sister was 5. Adjusting to our new lifestyle, made me grow up faster than I should've. My mom now worked two jobs and when she wasn't worked, she was sleeping. I had to take on the responsibility of taking care and being there for my little sister. I had to wake myself and my sister up for school, ger us ready and on the bus. At the time of their divorce, my mom and us lived pretty close to my dad, which made it easy for us kids to see him.
After the divorce, my younger sister and I saw our dad every other weekend, which was ordered by the courts. A few months went by with us seeing him every other weekend but as a few months went by, we began to see him less and less. My mom had changed jobs and had to work in Baltimore, which meant we had to move closer to her job. This gave my dad more of an excuse to not see us. As time went on and me not seeing much of him, I began to have anger for my dad. But several years passed and I began to believe the lack of my dad's presence in my life turned out to be a good experience for me to have. Although, I would've loved to have that bond with my dad growing, it made me a stronger, mature earlier, and gave me morals I may not have had without that experience.
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Some might ask why I think not growing up without my father in my life was a good experience, I know it sounds a little crazy when said out loud. If I grew with my parents together, I would've experienced a darker childhood with both of my parents unhappy in their marriage. I learned how I want my children to be raised and how I never want them to feel like pain I felt by being abandoned by my dad. I also wouldn't have matured the way I did, and I am thankful that in my teenage years I was wiser than what i should've been. I did not have to give my mom anything to worry about or stress her out if I went through an immature teenage phase. Without my father around, I was taught how to keep and maintain strong relationships and friendships. While entering high school, my mom got remarried and I got a new step family.
While I was not happy about this new change, I was happy for that my mom was happy again. Eventually I became comfortable with this new family. My step dad taught me how to change the oil in my car and showed me the bond I was missing with my dad. Being raised with all girls in the house, I was excited to have a step brother and I couldn't image life without one now. He has always been there for me and gave me advice my sisters might not have been able to give me. Luckily, my dad and I were able to reconcile our relationship after I graduated high school. After high school I was given a job offer from an organization I was interning for. I was very excited about this new chapter in my life, so I posted about it on Facebook.
Through the grapevine, my dad heard about this and reached out to me. While I was very hesitant to reply to his message, I knew if I did not take this chance to might have a relationship with him, I may not get another one. We started talking a little at a time and months later he asked to meet at a park we use to go to when I was little. A short meet up, turned into hours of talking and laughing with each other. I realized that we have both grown into incredible individuals who have went through struggles and difficulty.
Today, my dad and I are incredibly close with each other. But I do still believe, growing up with the experiences I did help me greatly! I would not have the morals I have now or my strong-minded opinions that I do without this experience. I also learned not to take life for granted because everything can change in a matter of moments. I have traveled to a few countries and met amazing individuals with incredible stories. I am glad to be a part of life's imperfections. Over time I was able to learn that my parents spilt did not mean my life was going to crumble apart but make made my life better.
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