There I was. A first grader missing lunchtime and recess to attend a meeting to discuss my feelings with my guidance counselor and peers who also have divorced parents. I nervously walked into the classroom where the group was sitting around a large rectangular table; there was nowhere to blend in or hide. Thinking about discussing such fresh wounds so openly with this group seemed overwhelming, but at least there was pizza and ice cream being served. That was something to look forward to.
My parents were getting divorced and I had to move out of my house that I made so many memories in. No more family time, no more playing with the kids on the block, no more life as I knew it; and it was all out of my control. Fortunately, it wasn’t that awkward sharing my personal stories since everyone was so simpleminded at the time and I realized that I wasn’t alone in my struggles at these meetings. Although everyone was dealing with the same issue, not everyone’s stories were the same.
Overall, I was pretty lucky that my parents were civil and that I had an arrangement to visit my father at his house on Thursdays and every other weekend. There were students at this meeting who shared stories about them not being able to see their other parent or even worse the having their other parent pass away. I finally understood that there were other people my age that had it much worse than I did and that I should appreciate how lucky I was. Instead of wallowing in my sadness, I came to the conclusion that I had a choice regarding how I would handle what I was going through. I finally had authority over something. Of course it would be easy to waste my energy being upset but instead I chose to be positive and use that drive to always self-improve in every aspect.
Going to this meeting truly opened my once naïve eyes. Adversity was introduced to me for the first time by hearing my peers’ stories. I grew up quickly at a young age and learned that there were many ups and downs to life. After the meeting, I decided that no matter what the situation, I want to make the most out of every moment. The good times are good, and the bad times will just be a learning experience to make me stronger. In addition, I acquired that not everything in life would be handed to me and I cannot control every situation that I am placed into. Leaving this meeting left me with a feeling of independence and self-awareness that I am in control of how I choose to deal with a situation, a positive feeling that still holds true today.
Here I am. A self-aware high school senior that is dedicated to self-improvement. Looking back, attending these meetings helped me realize that I have the power to choose how to handle every situation that I’m in. I am devoted to self-improvement, whether it is academically or socially, I strive to excel in every aspect because it is my personal choice. I am aware that if I let a situation get the best of me, that is truly my fault because I chose to wallow in it. I am who I am because I choose to be.