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The smell of the rain seeped through my car’s air-conditioning system and lingered throughout the car. The journey from my house to my dad’s body shop usually never took this long. Instead of taking the usual five-minute drive, the rain elongated my route to almost fifteen minutes. As I pulled up to the building, the front door caught my eye. I had never been so happy to see those plain white letters on the glass door. After staring for a couple minutes, my dad appeared, motioning for me to pull my car into the back part of the shop. As I did so, I could tell something was just not right. The look on my dad’s face as he directed me to shut the car off agreed with my assumption. He proceeded to check the little things that make a car run, such as engine oil, headlights, and tire pressure. During this process, we began chatting about how our day went and our evening plans when suddenly his phone rang. “I’ve always hated that ringtone,” I shouted. As he walked away, he turned back for a split second with a grin on his face and began to chuckle. He then turned to the screaming phone and began his conversation. I chose to sit in my car since it felt below freezing in the shop. As I put my head back and let the game on the radio echo out the door speakers, a knock on the window startled me. It was my dad, once again motioning something. The densely fogged windows caused me to open the car door as a source of translation.

“Come inside for a second, we need to talk,” muttered my dad. My heart skipped a beat in response to his statement. As I traveled through the Arctic-like air, I sensed a feeling of anxiety coming from my dad. “It hurts me to tell you this, but you’re old enough to know. Your mother and I have decided to tell you first.” A variety of panic-stricken thoughts immersed my mind. I could tell he sensed fear in my voice.

I braced myself for what felt like the end of the world. “What is it, Dad?”

“Your mother and I have been having some problems. We just cannot get along. So, I’ll be moving out soon and in with your grandma and grandpa. I don’t want you to feel like I’m abandoning you, because I’m not. I still want to be a part of your life,” he responded. A feeling of shock overtook my body. My dad then proceeded to tell me the reason for their divorce and the changes that would result. These changes included me attending a local college instead of a state college an hour away in order to be close to home and help out my mom, having to get another job, and spending most nights home alone. I could not think of anything to say to my dad. In a matter of an hour, my life had taken a 360° turn in another direction. I did not cry nor did I scream in anger. Instead, I was at peace with the decision because I knew it was for the best. Even though my life would be different, I knew things would be all right. “I don’t want you to be mad and neither your mother nor me. It’s no one’s fault.” I could not see how I could be angry with either one of them. This was their situation, not mine.

“Things are going to be totally different, aren’t they?” I asked.

“Yeah, pretty much. You’re strong, my girl. I know you’ll do all right,” He answered. As I hugged him goodbye, I almost uttered the “see you at home later” that we always say. I recollected the previous conversation as I walked back to my car. Numerous thoughts entered my head. The drive home was a hard one.

“How could this happen to me?” I screamed out loud acting like there were passengers in my car. I then realized God has a plan for my life, even though it may be quite the struggle. I decided to let go and let God. In order to accept this change and continue with a positive attitude, I needed to change my perspective of life. I decided to put school and my family as my only focuses in life. These two things would be what got me through this struggle. Although the future seems harder than ever, this situation has changed me to be the person needed to survive and persevere through whatever comes my way.





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