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Change: Growing for the Better
My life would have never been the same if I never gained or lost anything in it. From being a little girl that wanted everything, and to be the one that the world revolved around to a person that has grown to something that has bettered herself and her surroundings. I never thought that life would have changed so much, but it only made me gain more experience and be more memorable. I woke up everyday, thinking that I would never make a change in anything that I did, but that turned out to be the opposite. It never came to mind that I would never be the person that I am today. Through all the, I would have never realized that I would be able to achieve so many possessions; good and bad. Looking back at my life so far, I never thought about my ideas, thoughts, family, friends, and the overall aspect of life changes. Not knowing that life came with so many choices that could help you.
When I was a kid, I tried to do minimum work as much as possible. I was the one who cared but did not mind about life. I worried about the problems that seemed so simple, or something that would not affect me in a way that it actually did. I remember getting ready for the first day of kindergarten, and only remembering changes that would affect my life for the time being. I wanted to be the best; I remember picking the right type of clothing to wear or who to sit by that looked amazing, or the kid who got the most attention. I wanted to be that kid that everyone looked up to but only for the wrong reasons. Being the first student to get to the playground; the first to ride down the big blue slide, the first one to touch the soft silky sand, the first kid to be chosen on the ‘best’ dodge ball team. I remember asking my friend, “If this kid was the right one to be on the team,” or asking my friend, “If this kid hit the hardest.” I always tried to be the first to raise my hand; being the ‘first’ was the only thing in my mind.
The first day that I actually met somebody that could help me through anything was a little girl who suddenly one day turned into my first best friend. My friend always had the go to personality, she was caring, and always made my day better. She was somebody who I did everything with, she was always the one who I hung out with, the one who went to my house and we did absolutely nothing but felt like we did everything. We always went one those silly adventures that meant like the world to me.
I remember one day, we had one of those adventures and I remember asking my uncle, “Can I ride that new yellow bike that you bought?”
“Yes of course, but don’t get it dirty or ruined. There is another bike that I have your friend could ride.” My uncle said.
“Thank you, I’m going to have fun!”
“I bet you are, but please don’t ruin it, I just fixed it up.”
“I promise I won’t, I’ll be very careful.”
So we rode the new shiny yellow bike to the muddy dirty wash. We went down a big steep hill in the wash, into a puddle of mud. All I could think of was how much fun I had and I never gave a thought about what my uncle said to me. Later that evening I went home and I was in trouble, it bothered me that I was in trouble but it did not bother me as much as it should have because my best friend was there to help me cope with the situation.
“Andrea, its okay, don’t worry about it we will clean the bike so it will look brand new.” She said.
I replied back saying, “Yeah! You’re right. I hope he forgives me.”
“He will forgive you, it’s not like you did it on purpose.”
“Well, I should have listened, so it is my fault.”
“Really, it is alright, we will clean it up later tonight.”
She was the one that helped me through my rough patches in life, the one that made my elementary education more inspiring, exciting, and memorable. I thought my best friend would be there for my whole life, until we became distant and we started hanging out with other people that would actually fit the personalities that we had.
I realized that my best friend was there just for a ride, I wanted someone there for me who helped me through thick and thin. Entering Junior High, I found somebody that could replace all the negative situations into something positive. I thought actually for once, I had a true friend that would never leave my side, a partner in crime. Until one day, I overheard a conversation that changed my perception of everything about her; I never realized how someone could be so cold, so senseless, and so conceited. I never realized that drama could have ever gotten between us, I was apparently wrong.
As I tried to cope over that problem, I realized that school was something important. It could help me in the long run and my education would be something that would be with me for the rest of my life. Education suddenly became a concern in my life. It was something that made me feel accomplished; it felt like I was doing the right thing in life. I had a responsibility that needed to be fulfilled. School helped me not worry about my family, and it helped me go through these obstacles that I never wanted to face at home. For instance, I was always brought down, some way shape or form. From the way I looked or the attitude I had. School was my vacation to escape all of those negative problems at home. It felt like school wanted me to progress and be the best person I could be and never be brought down.
Coming home I always worried that my parents thought I was never good enough. I was the middle child that never was paid attention too. It felt like no matter how hard I tried at anything I did; one of my sisters would always do better, one up me. I always had my homework complete before any of my other family members, I always had my room clean to a crisp, and I felt like nobody noticed anything that I did right. They only realized my mistakes, my flaws, and anything that I did wrong. I felt that I was in a maze that I could never get out of.
When I thought nothing could get better, it actually did. I remember my mom was on the phone, and she was saying, “Yes I would like to help any way possible, that just isn’t fair.” I had such a curious face, it felt like I had a blank expression, no emotion. My parents wanted a family meeting.
I felt so scared that I did something wrong, until my dad said, “We have an addition to the family.”
“What are you talking about?” I asked.
He replied back saying, “A few changes are going to happen around here. We are going to have to stick together.”
“Okay. Is it a person, or someone I know?”
“You do, but not in a way you think, you will have to find out.”
I felt relieved but I never realized what it meant, all that I knew was that it was a change in my daily life. I thought that my life would change for the worse because my parents would pay attention to someone else instead of me, and that they would forget that I existed.
My whole perception on that situation was wrong. The day that I met this cute little baby boy Tommy, changed my life in a way that I thought nothing could do. I never realized how precious he was and it turned out that he was the person I could tell everything to even though he had no idea what was going on. He just listened to me and never judged me on my flaws or mistakes. I had a connection to someone that would actually help me vent my problems. I never wanted to get rid of that feeling; it was a good change in my life. It helped me realize that there will always be light at the end of a dark tunnel. After minutes, hours, days, and months passed, my family finally adopted him; my soon to be brother. I knew that this was a permanent change in my life, and I was glad that I now have a little brother that I can now call him part of my family.
Even though, Tommy or T-bone (we called him that as a nickname) was hard to handle in the beginning, the fact that I had to adjust to everything was difficult, but it helped me in the long run. I remember that I always had to wake up in the early morning from a horrid, screaming cry. He always woke up in the oddest hours in the morning because of the crying for whatever reason it was from being a diaper change or having food. As I lay in bed wide awake, I always complained about how he got everything he wanted and I always asked myself, “When is this going to stop?” Waking up for school, I always felt tired and needed more sleep but my mom never let me sleep in. I always complained on the little mistakes that he did, even though that he didn’t know what he was doing. I remember one day, I had to feed Tommy, and I realized how cute he was and that nothing was his fault, but it was mine for being selfish. When I had to feed him, I always gave him the cutest bib that said, “Daddy’s little helper.” Then I always gave him the green little spoon. I gave him the baby food that was pear flavor because I thought he would like it the best. The food was so mushy and wet; it didn’t look appealing at all. He made a mess when I was trying to feed it to him. It went all over his mouth and all over his bib. It looked like he was swimming in a pile of rotten pears. After I was done trying to clean up, he gave me this little giggle and this adorable smile. My family always called this smile ‘Ugly face’ and whenever we said that he did it. It was one of the cutest things that he used to do. I also remember that when my sisters and I played house, we used to dress him up into little characters. And after we were done playing, we always did a photo shoot. We always put make-up on him, glitter, and little dresses that we had when we were little, or anything that we could find to dress him up into. We made him do different poses and we had different backgrounds for the photo shoot. One time, we dressed him up as a rock star, and we put a broken white mop onto his head, put him into a black jacket that looked liked leather, then we had a blue bandana and wrapped it around his mop head, and then he wore a diaper underneath. I took so many pictures of him but only one good one came out; I will always keep that one good picture of him. If I never began to be appreciative of Tommy, my life would have never been the same. I wouldn’t have had the greatest memories of him or stories to tell him when he gets older.
Tommy made me realize that I always had something to look back on when anything went wrong. As Tommy grew older, my heart became fonder of him. Looking back on my past, if Tommy never came into my life, I wouldn’t be who I am today. Even though his life was rough at first, and I look back at his life, I know my life wasn’t as half bad as his. Tommy came into this world with a sense of negativity surrounding him, his mom was always drinking when she was pregnant with him and she also did drugs. She caused many problems to her family and many to my family; before and after we adopted him. His mom was not a mom that couldn’t handle this little precious kid. I am so thankful that my family wanted to adopt him; he changed my life in a more positive way. Whenever, I am having a bad day, he would always used to say, “Sissy it will be okay, I love you ’Dea.” When I remember him saying that it makes my heart melt, and it makes me strive to have a better day, and to have a positive attitude on any situation.
Tommy was the best friend that I was actually looking for. When he was little, my whole life was devoted to him. I knew that when I became older and when he becomes older, I knew that he would appreciate all my hard work that I did and eventually will keep doing. I knew he would appreciate who I am; he would look up to me and all the accomplishments that I have earned so far in my lifetime. I knew that it was my responsibility to make him have a great life that any kid should have. I wanted to make a difference in his life. My whole perception of life had changed; I was greater than I have ever expected to be. I wanted to be the one that when Tommy was having a rough day, I could say, “Everything will get better.” I want to be the one to help him with his rough patches in life. I wanted him to know that I would always here when he needed a shoulder to cry on.
And eventually when he realizes that he isn’t ‘ours’, I want him to know and realize that he is more than that, he is part of a family that loves him dearly. I hope that one day he will always want to be part of my life; I want him to know that when he gets older that he will always be my little brother even though we aren’t related. I want him to know that he has changed my life for the better, and I want to him to realize that someday I changed his life for the better.
As I started to appreciate life more, I felt that I was becoming a better person. I wanted to help others as much as I could. I wanted to be known for kindness, laughter, smiles, and not worry what others thought of me. I was becoming a person that I started to like. It didn’t bother me of what others thought, as long as if I was happy and I felt like I was doing the right thing. Life suddenly became clearer to me. I remember everyday at school; I tried to give my best attitude to everybody and everything.
I always told my teachers, “That I appreciated them, and that they were always an inspiration to me.”
They said to me, “I am happy that you are part of my life.”
“Thank you, have a great day!”
“You too, see you soon.”
It made me feel wanted wherever I went. I became a better person and I was proud of myself.
When my Tata was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, I had no idea what that meant. All I knew was that it was some sort of sickness but I didn’t realize what it would ever do to him. The only thing that I actually knew was that he would forget all his memories that he made, or would never act the same again. I never realized that his whole mind set or personality would change. Looking back, all I can help to remember is that he is and will always be a good man, he was always there for me, he took care of me when I was a child, told me that I could do anything I set my mind to. My Tata was a man of his word, I trusted him full heartedly. But as time goes on, and I see him suffer, I realized how appreciative I am for what a life I am granted with. I want my Tata to remember all the good times we had together or the good times that he has had, but I know that he will never be able to remember them. It breaks my heart to know this. But it can only make me grow as a person and better myself. All I want to do is help, but potentially knowing that it might make a difference or not kills me inside. All I want to know is that, if he is really having a good life or not. Or if he actually remembers me deep down inside instead of just saying my name, I want him to remember me for who I am and I want him to realize what type of person I am becoming.
I want my Tata to know that I love him, I want him to be his old self again, I want us to talk about all the fun memories we have had together. I remember that we always played basketball together, and he would always let me win.
He always said, “You can make the next basket if you try your our hardest.”
I replied back, “I can’t. I’m not a good as you.”
“If you keep trying, you can definitely make it.”
“I just get frustrated. It seems like I can never make it.”
“You will, keep practicing. I love you.”
“Thank you, love you too.”
We always played thumb war and of course he would let me win. Every time we played thumb war, we always started off saying, “One, two, three, four I declare a thumb war, five, six, seven, eight, try to keep your thumb straight, nine, ten lets begin.” I always enjoyed the little things that he used to do for me, from giving me a hug to giving me ten dollars. I know that life doesn’t stop for anybody or anything. I need to realize that one day we can talk about all the fun times we had when he does get better and when he is done suffering from this disease. He will always be on my mind and in my heart when his time is up.
I know my life has changed drastically over the years from being a little kid until now. From being conceited to someone who cares for others. I have bettered myself, gained a new perception of life, and I now don’t take anything for granted. I now know that my family was always there for me and will always be there for me. If only I realized that sooner. I know that friends don’t stick around, they only come and go. But I finally can say and know that I do have friends that will care for me and will be there for me only if I chose the right ones. I also know that school will always stick around for me. I am glad that I took the path that I did, to realize who I have become and who I will become.
Realizing that, as life goes on I will always be who I am; I will never change for the worse only for the better. I will strive to be who I want to be, and I will grow to be something better. I’ll always keep in mind that being positive, appreciate, loving, and always having a good mind set will help me in the long run and it will get me through any obstacles that will come my way. Life doesn’t stop for anyone, having a great attitude, will make life easier. Even if you are having cloudy days, some way or some how you will eventually have a sunny day. Life to me is something special, and more changes will come my way but it will only make me grow for the better.