My life is like an unpredictable weather system. I am no meteorologist, but I do know that you will need many pairs of rain boots, an umbrella, and the occasional sunblock if you were to live my life. Everyone has their gloomy and sunny days. For many of us, it takes a while to see the bright light of beaming hope upon our heads.
Rain, strong enough to put out my eternal flame, poured down on me when my father was diagnosed with cancer. I was ten at the time, still trying to clean up the disaster that Hurricane Nancy, my mother who died from cancer just shy of a year before, created. Big, dark, moody clouds were always above my head mocking my happiness. I was in sixth grade and the shadow of death had already stopped me in my tracks. My father was hopeful for his recovery. His days were mostly sunny and, if there was any setback, his mood would only be partially cloudy. I put up a front, pretended that life was all sunshine and blue skies. I had to be strong for him. As time went on, there were warning signs of a second emotional hurricane. This time, my dad’s name took the title.
I was in disbelief and often asked myself if life was even real. Tragedy like this was something I would read about or see in movies. When did my life become a fictional novel? I sat inside, waiting for the storm to pass. Day after day I looked at my outside world seeing pain and sadness. No beam of sun ever popped through. I missed two weeks of school after my dad died to sit underneath my raincloud and accept that life was not fair. My friends were too young to understand and, honestly, so was I. I saw them running around with the sun shining over them creating an illusion of life I wanted to have. Eventually, I went back to school and faced the real world again. People looked at me as if I was a stranger. In some ways that was true, I had become a shell of the person they once knew. As much as I tried to dissolve my pain and try to live a “normal life”, I knew that things would never be the same.
As time went on, I went to middle school and my cloud shifted to partially sunny. Time started healing my broken heart. School started to become a distraction to my reality to the point that seventh to eighth grade became a blur. When I started high school, I gained a supportive friend group who let my emotions be heard. I became comfortable to show how I really wanted to feel. All my suppressed thoughts and rainy days came back, upon unlocking them. The rain poured and I started to feel hopeless again. I would talk to my friends about my past, although they did not understand, they held my hand. They showed me that I should be proud of who I am and where I have been. Each friend I made gave me articles of confidence to wear as I go out and face the storm of life. Their help pushed me to grab a warm jacket and a pair of boots to brace myself for the rain. I now step outside even on my gloomiest and stormiest of days to try to be my own sunshine so just maybe; a rainbow of hope will pop through.