Once – I was twenty

Once I was fifteen years old, I understood what it meant to go wild, be crazy and have fun.

Once I was sixteen years old, I understood what it meant to fall in love and succeed in something you worked hard for.

Once I was seventeen years old, I understood what it means to have my heart broken and struggle to get back up.

Once I was eighteen years old, I understood what it meant to break my parents heart.

Once I was nineteen years old, I understood what it meant to grow up and be responsible for my life.

Now that I am twenty years old, I understand what it means to have so much weighing on your shoulders but no one to share them with.

Parents don’t always get it. And I don’t blame them. Late night outs. Staying up through the night. They think it’s all fun, game and laughter. Some nights it is. Many others it’s about responsibilities. I don’t say much because I know their “freak out” alarms will turn on. I can’t say much because I know if they knew, I can never wonder the streets till late at night. I wish I could tell them more. Be  responsible. Be accountable. Be every other thing a grown up should be. But how can I tell them that I stay out to make sure troubled friends get home safely. How can I tell them that I get calls from crying friends at four in the morning. How can I tell them that, sometimes, I leave the house in the middle of the night just to comfort a friend. I rather deal with them yelling at me to get up because it’s way past noon. I rather deal with them telling me that I am an unaccountable and irresponsible person that gives no fucks about her parents. Than deal with the guilt of not being there. Three years I wasn’t there and look at where things are now. It’s three years I can’t take back or change. And ever since I knew, I lie awake every single night asking myself what if. What if I didn’t leave. What if I had been there. What if I fucking had the balls to patch things up earlier. Damn it val. I could have done something. I could have possibly prevented it. I could have fucking been there. I could fucking have. And now, I spend every waking moment thinking about damage control. Thinking about how to better get through to them. Thinking about what I can do differently. So I’m sorry. I’m sorry if I am this aloof fuck who treats this house as a hotel. I’m sorry if I am a disappointment who gives no shits about family. I’m sorry but, right now, I cannot be a daughter and a friend.

I guess this is what growing up means.

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