Best of Freshman Writing
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Last updateded July 2, 2012.
PSU – Brandywine
Nothing is Guaranteed
Perhaps it was a life marked by continual change provoked by one negative circumstance after another that caused such lacking. Whatever the case may be, I’ve tried my best to feign optimism in trying times. I continue to live, day by day, knowing that I have never and may never know who my biological father is. Likewise, I’ve lived knowing that my biological mother may never be completely cured of her addictions and yet, lacking these important people hasn’t ruined me. My father’s identity and my mother’s location are ever changing. I may wake up tomorrow and my mother may be in another rehab in an undisclosed location, missing for an unknown amount of time; or there may be new speculations as to who my father really is, but I’ve given up on trying to understand why other kids always had what I never did. Because of my absent parents, I have the uncanny ability to laugh at the worst situations. My unique sense of humor protects me. Without them, I’ve learned to depend on myself for comfort, and that is a skill I wouldn’t give up for anything at all.
I’ve lived a life marked by financial instability. At ten, I watched my grandmother wither away as a result of lung cancer, and I lost the only caregiver I had ever known. My older sister gained custody of my siblings and me, just as we were losing every single penny we had to funeral cost and hospital bills. There was hardly enough money for food, still my family and I remained strong. We continued to go on and, through turmoil, we learned to remain calm and optimistic. This is a helpful skill when life is plagued by unwarranted misfortunes.
Throughout my life, I’ve learned that nothing is guaranteed. Teachers and social workers have all commented on how unstable my life has been, but they feel obligated to comment on how well I’ve turned out in the same breath. Through lack of consistency and stability, I have learned to be alert and to expect change. Of course, this has instilled a certain amount of fear in me, but it is the fear of the unexpected that drives me to prepare myself for whatever is to come. Yesterday wasn’t the same as today, and today definitely won’t be the same as tomorrow and although that can be disconcerting at times, the advantage this gives me in foresight is the push I need to attempt to make each day better than the last.
Ebony Ford's essay appears here with her express written permission and cannot be reproduced in any manner or fashion without her express written permission.