I started college and was surprised to see how shocked my friends are when I had told them that I never had alcohol in my life. It’s like I’m not a real college student because I don’t get drunk. The thing is that many people don’t understand my relationship with alcohol and the trauma I have attached to it. Alcohol and drunk people can trigger flashbacks to scarring scenes from my childhood because through the eyes of an innocent bright-eyed six-year-old, I watched alcohol tear my family apart.
I could tell you my whole story; how I use to come home from school and find my mom passed out on the floor or when my dad got black-out drunk on Christmas. I could tell you about how my mom only has half of a functional brain or that losing my dad broke my heart before any boy ever could. But this is not my sob story; this is how I rewrote my history. No one knows my full story, just bits and pieces. I don’t talk about my past that much for a reason, statistically, I was supposed to amount to nothing. Yet, I always knew I was meant for more.
I did everything right and followed all the rules. I’ve always been a goody-two-shoe and committed myself to excel in school. I’ve always been mature and independent, I knew from a very young age that I was in control of my future. I graduated high school with honors and at the top of my class. I was smart, just like my mom. The fear comes because smart wasn’t enough to keep my mom sober. The thing that always gave me meaning in my life was that I had vision and ambition to make a change, and lead a very passionate life. A successful and fulfilling future is my priority and I don’t want to do anything to jeopardize what I’m meant to do in this world.
Yet I still desire to value my youth and have a normal college experience. So, next time you see me out at a party and wonder why I’m never drunk, now you know. Most importantly, I’m very content with who I am. I possess no judgment towards my friends who do enjoy going out and getting drunk. I love them dearly and I don’t define them by what they do for fun because they value more in life than drinking. I can tell that they have a bright future ahead of them. I’ll never judge you, all I ask is the same from you.