Some know it by the Tulip City, others know it by just Holland. I had always thought I was going to be living there for a significant amount of time, I mean there wasn’t any other important place to be at at the age of seven. I was born in Holland, Michigan and absolutely loved it there. My favorite thing about Holland was during the spring when the tulip festival would take place downtown. It was the perfect time because the flowers would all be blossomed and it looked beautiful. I also loved going to the beach, Holland was close to the lake shore so that was a plus.
I lived with my mother, older brother, stepfather and two younger siblings. I still have good memories of my old school. Holland Heights Elementary School. There were a couple friends at school I had but my only really good friend was my neighbor, Wendy, and she was about a year older than me. We grew up next to each other and went to the same school. Her mom babysat all us kids and that’s how her and I became closer.
My life was going good, but that would all soon change once I received the news from my mother and stepfather. We were all at the dinner table eating spaghetti and garlic bread, my favorite. My parents were asking each other about their days and sharing what they’d done throughout it. They then looked at us with worried looks.
“Kids, there’s something we have to tell you guys.” My stepfather, Vern, said with an edgy tone.
“We need you guys to understand that we are doing what’s best for the family, so don’t get too riled up afterwards.” My mom chimed in.
“This summer we’re moving to Battle Creek. You guys are going to finish up your school year here, and have to say bye to everyone you know.”
I was completely shocked and couldn’t fully comprehend it, I felt like a child that had lost their favorite blanket. My older brother was silent, my younger siblings were too young to understand yet. But what about my friends, and everything we have here? I thought to myself. This couldn’t be happening, it’s impossible. Holland is the only place I’ve ever known and my parents just want to pack all our belongings and leave. There was no fighting this I knew for sure, so I didn’t say anything after dinner and went straight to my room. I was laying in bed with my mind racing with thoughts, and without even realizing it, I slowly drifted off to sleep.
The day had come, moving day. I was dreading the long trip ahead. Sadly, I said goodbye to my friend Wendy and her family because we were really close. I was sure going to miss going over to her house everyday to play volleyball and ride our bikes around the block. We told each other that we could always visit each other. As the car was leaving, they stood outside and waved, we waved back.
Now looking back at that day that felt like my life was going to end, I might have freaked out a little bit, but you can’t blame me. I wish future Emily would have told seven year old Emily that everything was going to be okay. That I was going to make new friends and great memories in Battle Creek. Not everything is the same anymore and I still do miss Holland, but Battle Creek isn’t half as bad as I thought it would be. Life is going good right now, and remember, everything happens for a reason.