Live for the Future
By Danielle, age 17, South Carolina
I've walked down a long road of hardship, dealing with many tragedies along the way. In the past three years I've lost both my parents: my Mom to a heart attack and my Dad to alcohol poisoning. Until recently I've been living with my grandmother who has been a wanna-be mother to me. I couldn't deal with the stress and pressure she was constantly putting me through so I moved out. At seventeen, moving out is one of the hardest things for a teenager, especially a girl. During this critical point in our lives we're still developing into the women we will be, and going through emotional changes that will shape who we are forever. Moving out has showed me that even though we may think we're ready to be independent most of us aren't.
From day to day I constantly worry about how I'm getting to school and work. Finding a ride in this tough economy is even tougher when you barely have the money to give someone for gas. I have a suitcase and a bag full of clothes that I carry around from house to house and unpack only in time to pack again. No place seems to be a home because these walls aren't my own. I've wanted to give up and go home, but I remember that I made a promise to myself to never go back to a place that made me miserable. I've learned to keep promises to myself now more than ever. I continue to go to school even though I'm going to "full online" next semester. Work is my only escape back to my fantasy world as a teenager. When I moved out I gave up the right to being a teenager to fulfill my life as a full time adult.
I want everyone to know that moving out isn't the best thing unless you have the means to survive on your own. Instead of being the independent bee, I'm the dependent girl again. I know times may seem hard, but understand that everyone must experience hardship in order to experience life. It's natural to feel out of place and alone sometimes, but if you surround yourself with friends and family I promise things do get better. I've now realized my friends are truly my family, and no matter what they have my back. Just remember two things: one, stay true to yourself, and two, live for the future, not today.