I believe being a writer is one of the biggest gifts you can give to your students. ~ Stacey Shubitz
This month I am participating in the Slice of Life Story Challenge. Thanks to Two Writing Teachers for creating a space for me to share my corner of the world.
"Leigh Anne, you have a visitor," a sorority sister announces on the intercom in my room.
A visitor? I never have visitors. Who would be visiting me at 8:00 at night? These questions invade my thoughts as I make my way to the foyer of our sorority house.
Looking down over the balcony, I see my grandmother and my mom standing just inside the doorway. I immediately think, who died?
"What are you doing here?" I ask, studying their faces for a possible answer.
"We just came to get you and Janis (my sister who went to another college in Indianapolis) for a little bit," explains my mom.
I know something is up because she wouldn't drive over two hours on week night for nothing. But she assures me that no one has died. I go back to my room, get my coat, and leave with them, still not knowing the real reason for their visit...
The night I learned my parents were getting a divorce will forever be etched in my memory. It was October, and the night air was chilly. We were sitting on a bench on my sister's college campus when my mother told us that she and my dad were separating. We had questions, many questions. I was twenty at the time.
Many people believe divorce is harder on younger children. But I don't.
Twenty years is a long time to be a part of a family.
Young children are told "Mommy and Daddy just don't love each other any more, but we both still love you," and they begin their life being shuffled between two households. Young children are more resilient and often accept this new way of life.
But twenty year olds understand.
We understand the lies, the deceit, the cover-ups.
We understand what it means when a parent doesn't come home at night.
We understand the words affair, adultery, unfaithful.
We understand the emptiness of the words, "I am sorry."
We understand that a family can be shattered
in a single moment
on a bench
on a college campus.
It's something we don't forget.