Growing up I faced many hardships resulting in having a rough childhood. I learned how to be independent basically on my own. I had to go through trial and error to figure things out. My life was like a twisting roller-coaster until I realized what needed to be done to become responsible and independent. As I got older I did receive some guidance from my older cousin who also somewhat went through the same situation as myself. Growing up I had no parent role models and no structure which made it difficult for me to learn how to be responsible and independent. Even today I have obstacles that I have to deal with but I can better handle them because I learned how to.

   

             When I was three months old I was diagnosed with heart murmur which in my case I had three holes in my heart. My parents were young and were not able to care for me so they made the decision to let my grandparents care for me. And as many of you know grandparents love to spoil their adorable grandchildren. I had no rules at home or when going to places I was the boss and anything that I asked for I would get. So, there I was always being spoiled and got whatever I wanted. The reason why I mentioned myself getting whatever I wanted is because that was a big reason why I was dependent and not independent. What I mean by dependent is that I couldn’t do many things on my own when I was younger. Most kids get taught how to clean up their messes after playing but not me I didn’t have to clean after myself. My grandparents did everything for me I didn’t have to learn what most kids learned and that made me more dependent than independent. Yes, my grandparents were basically my parents but growing up I didn’t really have parent role models to help guide me and give me structure on how to become responsible and independent. I was not sure about what structure was. Since I had everything I needed and always felt loved I assumed that had something to do with structure and was supposed to aid me to growing up and being responsible.

         As I got older it was not such a good thing that I was so spoiled and I started getting into trouble at school a lot. It first started when I was in eighth grade and with me not wanting to do my school work or any of my homework. I got a few calls home from the school but my grandparents didn’t seem to care about the phone calls. Then I started getting detention slips sent home but still my grandparents didn’t seem to care about those either. So, I then thought it was ok to do those things because I never got disciplined for misbehaving.

           Then, I was in high school just starting my freshman year and remember I have a nasty attitude and basically had a mindset that I could do whatever I wanted because I never got in trouble.    So, the first couple of months passed and I can remember that I already had gotten a ton of calls home. I was getting a bit out of hand at school and refused to listen to teachers and counselors which was not acceptable. I eventually had to move to a different high school because I was immature and irresponsible. The new school was very strict and I did not like it but also didn’t have a choice whether I liked it or not. I started not showing up to my classes and ditching school often but I never got in trouble by my grandparents. One weekend I went to a family get together and noticed that my favorite cousin was there but as I was walking to her in the back of my mind I thought she is going to ask me questions that I didn’t want to answer. She asked me “how are you doing in school?” and “are you going to graduate?”. I answered honestly and said no I don’t think so I hardly go to school and I kind of just do what I want. She had a puzzled look on her face and we had a long talk after I said that. She really made me think about the way I was acting and that what I was doing was in no way ok. Everything that she explained to me made me go into deep thinking about how my future would be like if I didn’t learn to take care of myself and get a career. I eventually started attending school and all my classes because that was my first big step to learning how to be responsible.

       I worked very hard and graduated high school also receiving seven scholarships. After graduating high school is when I realized that you can’t just simply get what you want whenever you want. The reason I say that is because at that point I understood that in life you don’t get things handed to you and to get what you want you need to work hard to get it. But I still for some reason discovered that I was not ready to be responsible. I registered for college right after I graduated high school but dropped my classes only two semesters after I started. I went back to that I don’t care what anyone tells me I’m going to say and do as I want. Things did not go very well after that I went back to getting into trouble and honestly was homeless for one year. I eventually got tired of not having a home and not being able to buy what I needed. Some time while all this is going on I see my cousin again even though I was trying to hide from her. We had one of those talks again but I didn’t care at that time and did not take her advice. After thinking about every word that was spoken to me I knew I could do what I set my mind to do and I decided to get a job and started working to try to better myself. In 2015, I found out I was pregnant and that is when I knew I had to take the advice that my cousin had given me. I now had to be able to not only learn how to take care of myself but to also care for a baby. When I had my son, I did not have very much help I was on my own and had to learn a lot fast. I did have family help here and there but for the most part the internet was my way of getting my questions answered. That was a huge eye opener for me I worked hard on teaching myself how to be independent and it was not easy.

      From my childhood years all the way through to my early adulthood I was immature, irresponsible, and not independent. Now I am a better person I work full time, attend Chaffey college full time, and I am a full time single mom.  I had to learn and teach myself how to do these things on my own. There are many things that I did not mention that went on in my life but I am not perfect and I also know that nobody is. I had to take many steps to get to where I am today and along the way I learned through trial and error. Every time something went wrong I would fight my hardest to get through it and continue. I am thankful for my cousin and her positive motivational talks that we had. Motivation and effort is what helped me to become responsible and independent. I continue to learn new and better ways to be successful and independent. I will continue to do so no matter what obstacles come my way.  I can honestly say that I am proud of myself.