A Call for Action: When Teens Become Adults

[Note from Vanessa: Rachel was one of our first interns here at Radical Parenting and now she is graduating from college!! She asked if she could write an article and here it is…]

Rachel is an aspiring writer from Northern Virginia studying English and Journalism in North Carolina. She enjoys running, reading, writing on her blog, and traveling.

There are only three semesters left of my greatly anticipated “college life.” I have both strong convictions and vague, seemingly unattainable desires for the future stacked up in my mind, yearning for some sort of organization or at least, a plan of action. I recently applied for an internship at a fashion magazine in New York City and cannot help but chew over the possibilities of a summer in the city working and marveling, and going to bed at night reeling over the previous day, unraveling it in my mind like a thread, reminding myself that if I can survive in NYC alone, I can survive anywhere.

I have had little need to worry about survival until now. My parents did all the worrying. Now, as I am on the brink of transitioning into an independent, autonomous life, I finally realize the enormity of the sacrifices my parents have made for my siblings and me. My parents immigrated to the United States in their mid-20s and have fostered an easy, fulfilling life for me. I have always known that, even as I threw tantrum after tantrum as a child, and even as I throw the occasional juvenile one now. Only now that I am more aware of their arduous efforts, have they transformed into heroes: unconditionally loving and incessantly giving parents. I put in the effort to do well and move forward with my education and career to secure a good future for myself. My willingness and persistence, however, can only be credited to my parents. That drive is all for them; my ceaseless thanks.

Stemming from my early period of teenage angst, and therefore poetry and writing that so unfortunately reflected it, and my hilariously juvenile dream to be a singer/songwriter, I learned how to be a curious observer, a heedful listener, a relentless reader, and most of all, a writer. For almost six years now, I have wanted to be a writer. This upcoming summer will be my last summer in college, so although the idea of being alone in The Big City, with its equally “big” expectations terrifies me, I’m taking the plunge. After wading in the shallow end of my assertiveness for far too long, I want nothing less than a challenge.

So here’s to bright lights and an even brighter future.

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