Tag Archives: teenagers

Comparison

It was in grade nine that I met the girl that I will likely always be jealous of.

We met playing volleyball and she became a close friend of mine over that year. If one were asked to describe either one of us, the description would be near-identical. At the time we looked very similar with tanned skin, an abundance of curls, and long, lanky limbs. We called ourselves “Mocha” and “Caramel” because my skin was slightly lighter than hers and we felt we needed nicknames (our other friend was “White Chocolate”).

I did not play volleyball after that one year but I heard from White Chocolate (what a ridiculous name) that Mocha had been asked to join the elite team and was their starting middle, the position we both competed for during that year we played together. I had her on Facebook and saw her become more and more beautiful…than me. I felt trapped behind her: not beginning to straighten my hair until a year after she began regularly straightening hers, suddenly becoming curvier than her, and she grew a few inches taller than I.

There were times that I’d look at her profile and just lament over my own looks and disappointment in myself. Why can’t I take photos like that? Why can’t I be as thin as her? as tall? How can I make my hair to be as long as hers? Should I have had a boyfriend because she has?

It got to the point where I had to hide her from my newsfeed or risk being miserable once a day.

I guess my question/point of this post is why do we feel the need to compare ourselves to others?

When I’m not thinking about Mocha, I really like myself. I’m proud of my curves, I don’t mind my face (though sometimes I worry that it’s a bit lopsided), and I really do like myself as a person. But as soon as she comes into the picture that all falls down. Isn’t it sad that I have to put measures in place to ensure I don’t get upset about not being her?

I suppose it’s a matter of confidence. I can be happy with myself, I just need to learn to not look at myself in relation to others, I think.
I’m not quite sure I like how personal this was, but it was on my mind as I just came across her profile once again.

My heart hurts.

– K

Separation

I thought I’d write about this now rather than later. I haven’t told a lot of my friends about it and so, by the time most know about this blog, this article will hopefully be lost amongst my many others.

Now I present my thesis…or question, as I’m more pondering than proving:

Does parental separation affect a person more if it occurs during childhood or during young adulthood/beyond?

As a child with parents deciding to separate, I imagine future relationships would be slower to develop of slightly restrained. How can one believe in a lasting love when the prime example presented during childhood has broken? I suppose that’s the main argument I see. I’m sure behavioural issues can develop depending on how the parents handle the situation. In the case that the child truly believes it’s their fault, perhaps more developmental issues can evolve.

Of course these are all inferences as my parents have stayed together as I’ve grown up. It’s only now, that I’m 19, they decide to end things.

It was Canada Day. My mom and I went out to rent a few movies that morning. In the car she told me she was nervous because she had to talk to my dad about something–something she refused to tell me. I had a sudden gut-feeling of dread, intuitively knowing what was about to happen, but I shook it off…

An hour later they called my brother and I to the basement, where they had been talking, and told us they would be separating. Mom’s plan was to move out at the end of the month. Dad might have to sell the house. It wasn’t our fault, my mother stressed.

I couldn’t speak.

Despite my intuition telling me what was going on, this was unexpected. I had walked down the stairs forcing myself to think they were going to tell us something else, like that we were moving. But in truth their separation is no surprise to me. I’ve been expecting it for years. I can remember when I was nine going camping with family friends. My mom was talking to her friend in our tent about how unhappy she was, thinking I was asleep. For the decade since I’ve known my parents aren’t right for each other. But as the years passed, I began to believe they’d make it. Or at least stick it out until my brother and I had moved out.

I barely talked to or looked at my parents for two days. Finally I broke my (moderate) silence and cried. Hard. My mom had no idea I was upset. My dad must have known as he always knows these things about me, but he didn’t bring it up.

I leave for university in six weeks. I’m only coming back for Christmas and by then everything will have changed. Though, biologically, I have a family, all that I know of this family will be gone. I’ll need to split my time between my parents, between their houses, between their Christmas dinners… I’m so alone, but for my brother, but we’ve never really been close and I don’t see that changing anytime soon.

I resent my parents, not for separating, but for doing this now. I wish they’d gotten it over with sooner. Now I have no time to grow accustomed to this. No time to forgive them…

Happily this shouldn’t affect my character. While I’ve never been the kind of girl who wants to “find my Prince Charming,” I’m vowing not to make the same mistakes my parents did. I will never settle. Perhaps I’m slightly more skeptical, but the little hope I have for love isn’t completely lost. I’m already the woman I’m meant to be and I doubt I’ll change much from the person I am now.

But, gosh, do I wish it had happened sooner…

My tears about it have all dried up, but my hearts still hurts. And I don’t know how long it will stay broken. Or how far this will drive me from the ones I call family and the place I call home.