Coming to age is not something that usually happens in one exact moment, it is a gradual experience. A person coming of age is very vital to how they develop their personal characteristics. The story of how I came to age isn’t a story I tell very often. Personally, I believe that what happens in the past should stay in the past.
When I was nine years old, my parents, two siblings, and uncle decided that it was time for us to move from Missouri up to chilly Massachusetts. Both my uncle and father were construction workers. There were so many projects in Massachusetts, it was sensible for us to move. Financially, this was also the solution to our money problems. All around we were all very excited for this move, all except for myself. About halfway to Massachusetts, I had a gut feeling that this was a bad decision. Upon arrival, I felt like a fish out of water and, I was. Everything was so different compared to how Missouri was.
As time went by, living in Massachusetts, my close knit family started to part. There were many events added to this, but, the biggest of them was learning who my father really was. My father always had an air of mystery to his character. I finally figured out what that was. My dad has bipolar depression and also suffers from alcoholism. The move to the north was very difficult for him, money was tight, which made his symptoms worse.
When we first moved to Massachusetts, money was tight. So tight that my mother had to get a night job. This was convenient for our family. My mother wouldn’t have to pay for daycare and she could still contribute to our family’s financial problems. She would watch her children during the day and then work at night. At first this seemed like a good idea but proved to be otherwise. Every night when my mother went to work, I was left alone with my intoxicated father, uncontrollable sister and baby brother. I used to hate the nights my mother would work because of this. I came to learn that my father has bipolar depression and also suffers from alcoholism. The move to the north was very difficult for him. Having to take care of my siblings and I were too much for my father to handle. We just added to his stress level. This would cause him to spend every night drinking away the stress. It was around the age of eleven, I felt the need to step up and take control of the situation that my father couldn’t.
It was during this time period, that I came of age. No one was looking out for me. I was playing the role of an adult taking care of my siblings at night. There were all these unsaid responsibilities that I took on without my mother knowing. I can remember feeling the pressure to keep everything under control. Every night, I’d stay awake until 2 a.m. for...