I consider myself independent. My entire childhood and adolescence was spent around the same people and as a result, I was forced to remain the same person. So when college time came around, I decided to attend one in another state. My mother told me, “this is your chance to start fresh and turn into anyone you want to be,” (obviously because she wasn’t a fan of my current personality). This was a chance to get away from my family reputation and to be myself, not Grant’s daughter. So I moved to Omaha, Nebraska.
After completing college, I got an apartment all to myself. During college I had had various roommates which had pushed me towards living alone. I felt that alone was the only time I could truly be myself. Otherwise, I was always being prodded into a personality similar to the one I lived with. I went out and bought furniture and made my tiny little space my own. And then, when the bills came, I got a second job so I wouldn’t have to ask anyone for money. At night, I read books and wrote in my journals. It was quiet, but it was me. I came to peace with the thought of my life ending up this way.
I had never been a girl who dreamed of her wedding day or being a mom. My dreams were to be a teacher and a writer. My dreams didn’t include anyone except myself. The night Steve proposed to me, I remember being a bit taken aback. Not because I didn’t love him, but because I hadn’t thought too hard of putting that into my plans. I was OK with being a “me.” But I loved him and said, “yes” and then turned into a “we.”
Over the last few years, I’ve seen layers of my independence peel away or flake off. Having Steve around, I don’t need my old “figure it out yourself” survival attitude – he’s a useful resource with anything from opening a jar to help with working the DVR. And the other night, when I was lying in my hotel bed alone, I felt like half of my was missing. Like without Steve, I’m not myself.
I had laid in bed alone so many nights before and that was me. But now, I felt alone, not independent. I realized I have changed a bit. Like I found who I really was and comfortably settled into it. Maybe I just thought I was independent before, but that was only because I didn’t know what it felt like to be able to depend on someone. Steve has changed me and made me believe in people and give them second chances. And I’ve realized that my life is much more enjoyable with him to share it with.