The Aged Adolescent

June 11, 2009
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So there I stood, on a road that I’ve stood a million times before. Just standing, looking out into the darkness only to find a dim light from the house in front of me, my father inside talking to my uncle. The same uncle who lost both his sisters in one month, my grandmother and my aunt. This time standing on this road was different. This time I was thinking and the only thing that came to mind was how different everything had become. The road was quiet and no longer alive. Silence may feel good from time to time but not on this road. The road where I once walked with my brother and sister to a destination that would bring us happiness or sometimes fright when the night would take over the day. The road that brought us to a river which would bring us joy and fun. The road where my grandmother once walked.

Then I turned to face my grandfather’s house only to see the blue glow from the television set in his living room. All I could think was that he was alone and not with my grandmother who would be sitting in her chair reading a book. She would always stress the importance of reading to us any chance she could.

I felt as if I was an old soul trapped in a young girl’s body. Though I was only 16 years old, all I could think about was the memories. The simplest ones like having a cookout in the empty yard that laid in front of me, or finding eggs on Easter Day and wondering what was inside of them. Even though we still would do these things it wasn’t with the same people or as many people. No, these days were spent knowing these people were either gone from us or wondering what ever happened to them. Where are they now? I wonder what they’re up to? We know we’ve lost touch with them but you tell yourself this is what happens, people’s lives go on. They get busier and suddenly you’ve lost touch completely.

It was hard for a girl like me, obsessed with tradition, to see this happen. I wanted everything to stay the same. I missed the fact that my dad and I didn’t watch as many old movies as we once did together. I missed the simple pleasures like watching Disney movies almost every night and the happiness it brought me. I missed having my grandmother telling me how much she loved being a grandmother, how it’s the best job in the world. I missed her holding me and singing to me. I missed my aunt and how much she loved us. How she would come every Saturday just to see us. Those were things that I would never see again. I think that’s why I loved Disney so much. It brought back the innocence of life. It was something that would never change. It might sound crazy and childish, but in a way it isn’t. We all have the right to enjoy life.

I was broken from my thoughts by a passing car and I looked to the window. The television was off. I wondered what my grandfather was doing at that moment. Was he sleeping or was he just laying there, thinking, as I was? I stood looking at the house not taking my eyes off of it, letting the memories sink in, and I realized something. My greatest memories were spent with my family. I always felt the happiest when I was with one of them. Even though it’s hard for a 16 year old girl to admit, I loved my parents. Truthfully, I wouldn’t want anybody else. My mom was always on the run but it was always for us. Her strength was inspiring. She was serious when she needed to be and lighthearted when she wanted to be. She was truly one of my best friends. Truthfully, I thought my dad was brilliant. He was a musical genius and an excellent writer.

My parents did everything for us. They taught us how to live life. We were always going on trips and probably had done more as children then some people did in a lifetime. All of these things just made me love life even more. I loved the feeling that I had waking up every morning and knowing it was going to be a good day. I loved the thrill of listening to music or the anticipation of a new movie that was soon to be coming to theatres. I loved my friends and the adventures we had. I knew now was the best time of my life, but with all this happiness came sadness.

Although my life was filled great things, it was different from what it once was. Remembering is probably the hardest thing to do in a human being’s life. Good memories make you want to go back and repeat them, and bad memories make you want to forget but you can‘t. I remembered how my brother, my sister and I once went on so many adventures in our back yard by using our imagination, but now they seemed just silly child games. I remembered my grandmother and my aunt. I was only 16 but I knew what had changed.

There I stood on that road. I heard my dad’s voice calling me to leave. We got in the car and drove off. My father broke the silence. “ You know we need to see more of uncle Peter. He’s different since grandma and Margaret died, he’s depressed. It makes you think about life and how long you have to live. I mean when you think about it, Peter won’t be around in twenty years.” My father shook his head in astonishment. All I could think of was one day he won’t be here either and one day all the people around me would be gone. As human beings, the question we will always ask is why. We will never know but perpetually keep questioning.





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