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Taking Life in Strides: a little story to make you think
Posted by peekaboo28, Dec 19, 2014. 1594 views. ID = 6851

Taking Life in Strides

Posted by peekaboo28, Dec 19, 2014. 1594 views. ID = 6851
This post was written in 27 minutes.

Growing up, my family was lucky. My parents were together, they both had jobs and they both loved me to death. Being an only child it's easy to always get what you want. I never really looked at it that way until I was older but for lack of better words, I always thought I was spoiled. When I really took a liking to horses, my parents bought me a horse. When I really decided that surfing was my thing, my parents bought me multiple surfboards. I wanted a new bedspread? Done. It wasn't until the end of my senior year in high school that things really started turning around on me. I was accepted into college at the University of Colorado, Boulder and I had made the very adult decision that I wanted to attend school, 1000 miles from my home in Southern California. So of course, my parents supported me although we hit road block after road block and all of a sudden the looks of me going to Boulder looked slim. If I were to go, my tuition would be 54,000 with no support from financial aid because my parents' income was too high. My parents explained to me that my college fund would not cover 200,000 in schooling and I would not want to take out a loan larger than 40,000. I was crushed. I knew that this was what I wanted. I knew that I had to get it, no matter what. So, I got emancipated from my parents. Yes, you read that right. Emancipated. 400 bucks later I was an independent in the state of California. In order to get my tuition rate lower, I needed to become a Colorado resident. And in order to do that, you need to spend a year living by yourself, paying your bills by yourself, in other words being an independent. An adult. As you probably guessed, that's exactly what I did. In the summer of July I packed 18 years of my life in 3 suitcases and 2 plastic bins and made my way out to Colorado. Now, let me say we cheated the system. I currently rent a floor in a house owned by my aunt, my rent actually isn't deposited and one of the jobs I currently have, I was set up with. Regardless, I thought I was invisible. I mean, who wouldn't?

About one month into this whole process, I fell into a world of depression. When I was in it I had no idea, but man looking back did I not. I spent my days waking up, getting dressed, going to work, going home, changing, going to my second job, going home, sleeping, repeat. Granted, I had moved into a beautiful home, one where the owners were even more well of than my parents were. However, school tuition for this year was coming out of "my pocket", it really was, I had jobs where I had saved some money as well as a large graduation gift from my grandfather. It was terrifying. I was no longer the privileged girl in high school with a good equestrian career and straight a's. I was on my own. I was struggling. I tried to look at the good things, "well you live in a beautiful house now, right?" "look at this bed, it's about two sizes bigger than your one at home" "you may have paid for your own car, but at least its yours, right?" Nothing helped, and I lived through the motions until December. It wasn't until 2 weeks before I left to California that I caught myself thinking. I had been so unhappy here, so ungrateful. Who the hell cares if I'm struggling? I'm alive. I'm breathing. I actually have this opportunity and I'm squandering it away. I knew I needed a change in my life, so I made one. You see, I've been riding horses for almost 15 years. I know I can ride. I've been through 2 different horses, a plethora of different trainers and of course a thousand different mindsets. So when I scheduled a lesson to ride in front of the head coach and trainer of the college's equestrian team, I knew that something good would come out of it. Sure enough when I was done riding I was offered a starting position on the team. My parents think I was surprised. I wasn't. I knew I was falling and I needed something to pick me up again. So I made it happen.

So here I am, sitting in my old house, in my old bed telling you all of this. You may think, who the hell cares you spoiled girl, but you should. It's not that you should care about my life, necessarily. It should really transpose to yours. I guess what I'm trying to say here is that, yes, I grew up privileged. I grew up in the arms of people who would stop the world for me. When I turned 18 those people were still there but I was slapped in the face with reality. Bills, tuition, the workforce. I was drowning, and that's all I focused on. I didn't focus on the beautiful state I lived in, or how much family was so close to me. I didn't focus on all the pictures on my walls, of all my beautiful friends or all the memories that they allowed me to receive. I didn't focus on any of that.

When I went home I hardly noticed how small my house was, and it's crazy to me that I used to complain about it. I stopped caring how small our house was, well, because it's a house.

I stopped complaining when I got a kink in my neck sleeping in an uncomfortable bed because I actually have a bed to sleep in.

I stopped complaining when I was dead tired from work because I actually have two jobs.

I learned to take life in strides. No, I don't live the same life that I used to growing up. But I am still grateful all the more.

This holiday season take advantage of the warmth, kindness and family you have around you. You never know when it'll be gone.

Copyright 2014 peekaboo28. All rights reserved. has been granted non-exclusive rights to display this work. For permission to reprint this item, please contact the author.

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