Friday, March 6, 2009

I don't want to grow up

I can honestly say that I don't remember the last time I felt like a kid. I feel like I have always had to be the adult. My parents constantly put me in situations that not only aged me well beyond the years I was, but also made me step up and take responsibility for everything.

I remember hearing my name during just about every fight my parents had, and being blamed for their problems. And on more than one occasion, my step dad would tell me that their problem, whatever it was, was all my fault.

Now as an adult, I apologize and take responsibility for anything and everything. I will apologize for the weather. I will apologize for anything not going right in my life, in your life. It doesn't matter. I will apologize.

And I have learned over the years that this is not a very good trait. First of all, it's irritating. People tell me all the time, "stop apologizing." And because I do it excessively, people have told me that when I apologize for something I actually should be apologizing for, they can't take my apology seriously. It doesn't seem sincere, since I will say sorry for anything. I completely understand this, but it has been so ingrained in me to apologize, that it's hard to stop.

I remember I was living at my mom and her husbands house during my senior year of high school. That was the year I went a little wild. And as an avid journalist, I wrote about all about my crazy year.

One day, my step-dad, looking for a fight, read through all my old journals. A fight inevitably irrupted and I was basically kicked out of my house.

I spent that night at a friends house, balled my eyes out and listened to my mom's frantic messages about how she wanted me home. At 17 years old, I typed a letter to my step-dad telling him how sorry I was for doing the things I did and how much I knew I was wrong and how much I wanted to come home. The funny part was that I was not sorry, I really didn't want to come home and I didn't and don't think I was wrong. But I also knew that he would never take responsibility for his actions. I knew he would never apologize to me, and most importantly, I knew this fight would further tear apart our family. Something I could not bear the weight of.

So I gave him the letter and he told he how much he appreciated my apology and that was that. I was back in the house, hating him and hating every minute of it. But it was resolved, so I would deal with it.

Even though I am out of the house, I still feel like I am a character actor and the role is "grown up." I just want to play the part of a kid again. I want to be able to throw a tantrum and it be justifiable. I want to be upset and it not get chalked up to hormones. I want to be irresponsible and have someone else pick up the pieces. I just want to be a kid.

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