I’ve always loved school. I loved learning. I loved being able to come home every evening knowing that I learned something new. I’ve always wanted to become a Nurse Practitioner. It was in my nature to always help someone in need. And it was a bigger picture than the money. Wouldn’t you want someone to help you in your time of need? I knew I wanted to become an NP ever since I was young. People always told me I was destined to be in the medical field, and I believed them, and I still do.
I remember being in grade school, always coming to school with a long face. No one had suspected that I was unhappy. I was unhappy with my mom, unhappy at my dad, and generally everything else in my life. Was that a weird thing to say being that I was only around 6 years old at that time? My parents fought all the time; and I don’t think they realized how much it would impact me and my sister’s lives by watching them argue and bicker 24/7.
One evening, my aunt dropped my sister and I home from school. I was in such a great mood because I’d just won a spelling bee. I was ecstatic and ready to show my mom. I came running down the kitchen hallway.
“Mommy! Mommy! Look!” I yelled loud enough for her to hear me. She looked slightly bothered, as if she really didn’t care to look at my award. I practically shoved it in her face and she barged out a fake smile. My father was there too, and he also looked uneasy.
“Thats great!” He was referring to my award. How dry of a compliment was that? “Go in your room Bobo, your mother and I need to speak.” My dad called me Bobo, and still does, because I would always wear bubbles in my hair. I walked into the room that my sister and I shared.
“Is Mommy and Daddy mad at us?” my sister asked.
“No, they’re just talking..” I said quietly.
I peeked my head out of our bedroom door and overhear my parents, now arguing. I couldn’t hear exactly what the quarrel was about, but I knew it would lead into something very huge. My sister was trying to get a view over my head, but I wouldn’t let her. I didn’t want myself seeing what what going on between my parents, but I figured it was better than my sister seeing it.
The arguing was getting louder and louder. Before you ask the question, yes. It was. It was going on every day, if not that, then every other day. Then I saw my dad storm out of the house. All that was left there was a stuck mother, two scared kids, and an awful amount of silence. After a few minutes, I went to comfort my mom. She seemed like the victim, but years later I would soon come to find out that was quite the opposite.
My parents eventually went to court and fought for custody of me and Alena, who was 4 at the time. Who ever said that household wellbeing didn’t affect a child’s academic wellbeing lied. My dad gained custody, with my mom having visitation rights every weekend. My mom moved to Washington, D.C. shortly after, which meant visitation rights were only once a month, if my sister and I were lucky.
About 5 years later, my dad moved out and married his high school sweet heart. Ironic, right? That left my Aunt Natalie, my dad’s older sister, to raise me and Alena. I loved my parents, but this settlement had caused me to grow a loathing feeling for them. This wasn’t supposed to happen…but it did. I was a wonderful student, but, I was unhappy because of what my parents had put me through. I began to act out in school, and soon would be later on in life, outside of school. I became more distracted and grew an even shorter attention span than what I already had.
Growing up with my aunt was probably the best thing that ever happened to me. When I turned 17, she gave me the best gift ever, which was no more curfew. I know it may seem like something minor, but for a teenager who “ran the streets,” as my aunt would say, it was a more than sufficient gift. The only agreement that we made was to call her to make her aware of my last known location. This was in case I was in danger. My aunt was one of those paranoid guardians who always watched those I.D. channels where people go on killing and kidnapping sprees.
I excelled in high school and I knew that nothing would be stopping me from going to college and obtaining my Nursing degree. However, misery loves company. Somewhere along my high school years, I’ve befriended many people who were not really my friends. They were merely people who were lost, unhappy souls that needed to fester off people who were already happy, or at least on the road to being happy. That’s where I was at. Looking back at the past, I wondered many times why I would hang on to a group of people that I didn’t see in my life in 10 years. Then I figured out. Although I had a family that loved me to the best of their ability, I was still missing that love that I needed from my parents. My mom wasn’t there, and my dad was there, but, he wasn’t THERE.
I began breaking curfew times, which were probably midnight or 1am. Again, I went through this phase of “acting out”. I stopped being family oriented for a while, ran around with my “friends” doing things that wouldn’t benefit them nor myself. I became this angry person that I didn’t like at all. For one semester, my grades even dropped from A’s and high B’s to mid or low C’s. That doesn’t seem like such terrible grades; though, for a person who was always an A student, it seemed like I was failing. It’s as if I wanted to hang around my friends all the time, but keep a great track record in school. When I was 17, my friends and I had gotten into a fight in public. I was arrested, but later let free because I’d never been in cuffs before. I. constantly fought in high school, and as much as I tried to stay away from the drama, it couldn’t stay away from me.
In 2015, I graduated with an average of 84. I knew that if I wanted to become a Nurse, I couldn’t act the way I previously did in high school. I isolated my self from those high school “friends” and set my own path. It took me a while, about two years to mentally prepare myself for college, and I asked my self if I was really ready to intake what is destined for me. I was.
I never understood what it was like as a parent to split from your family. I was so mad at my parents for so long, until I was aware of what it was like for them. They didn’t split because they didn’t love me and my sister. They were still young and they needed the time apart to focus on themselves and establish a fulfilling life. They had infidelity issues, which occurred on my mom’s end; and I finally realized she was barely the victim in the case of my parents arguments. I learned many things in school, however, I think life was and still is my greatest lesson. I thank my parents because their situation forced me to grow up faster, and learn so much more at such a young age. Never let obstacles completely halt your aspirations. Facing my obstacles made me realize that there is so much to live for and so much to work hard for. Always push forward to achieve your dreams, because you will not only make yourself happy; the ones that really love you and are rooting for you will also be ecstatic when you cross that finish line.
I currently go to New York City College of Technology to continue my education to become a Nurse and, soon after, a Nurse Practitioner. I realized that no one will live your life for you, so you must accomplish what you want. You cannot let past boundaries define your future. You must remember that your dream will only reflect your reality if you put in the work to earn it. My life is a book; my experiences that lead to better days are written with pen, my experiences that lead to mistakes are written with a pencil, and the pages will be blank, ready for the experiences that I’ve yet to undergo.