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Grandmother Suzanne This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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     Grandma - when people say this word, many thoughtscome to mind. A grandma's house is full of laughter and joy. She spoilsgrandchildren, giving them candy before dinner and basically letting them do whatthey want. For me, different thoughts come to mind: mom, mentor and hero.Throughout my life, my grandma has been the only one truly there forme.

When my mother was pregnant with me, she moved from Kentucky (whereshe lived with my dad) to Michigan (where she now lives). The day I was born wasjust like any other day to her. Well, yes, she was in tremendous pain, but thisday wasn't special to her. She was only thinking about the next party she couldgo to when she got out of the hospital.

I wish I could say I was a burdento my mom, but I can't even say that. I wasn't a burden; it was as if I didn'texist. She partied all night and left my sister and me home alone. My grandmadidn't realize this until I was two years old, when she called one night and mysister, who was five, answered. My grandma asked to talk to my mother but, ofcourse, she wasn't there. Grandma came and took us to her house.

Afterthat night, my mother wasn't in the picture for five years, at which point shesaid she had cleaned up her act and was getting married. She wanted us back. Mygrandma couldn't do anything about it and the courts awarded custody to mymom.

Things with my mom were great for the first couple of months. Therewas no drinking or partying. I knew it was too good to be true, though, andgradually she returned to her bad habits.

I lived with my mom for fouryears but she was basically never home. When I had to go to the doctor, my mothercouldn't take me - it was too much of an inconvenience. All I was to her was aSocial Security check. My grandmother had to drive two hours so I could see adoctor.

I always liked it when my grandma came to get me. She would pickmy sister and me up for weeks at a time and take us on vacation. I loved going tomy grandma's house, but I dreaded it because I knew the fun wouldn't last foreverand I would have to go back to my mom's house.

For four long years, mygrandma tried to get custody of us but she could never prove my mom was a badparent until one June day. I remember it like it was yesterday. My grandma droveup to Michigan without warning and as she entered the house, she noticed what amess it was. There was no food in the refrigerator and she noticed bruises allover my body. She immediately called the police. They saw the situation, and fullcustody was awarded to my grandma: my hero.

I have been living with mygrandma for five years now. They have been the best years of my life.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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