I will be the first one to admit that sometimes, my parents annoy me to no end.

I will be the last one to admit that sometimes, I can be pretty awful to them and can be completely wrong in situations where I say I’m right.

This past week I’ve had somewhat of an epiphany about living with my family. Since moving to school I’ve repeatedly said, “I love my family, but I like them better when I don’t live with them.” I still agree with this statement, because honestly, living with the same group of people, family or not, can cause you to lose your mind sometimes and really need your space. But what I should be focusing on about this statement is the part where my relationship with my family has actually gotten stronger since I moved away. I appreciate them more when I see them less because I miss them for a month or two at a time, and really get a lot out of the weekend or week that I’m at home.

That is, until summer hits.

I wish this wasn’t true, but my family, particularly my parents, have really gotten under my skin this summer. Tiny things that they say and do have bothered me to an extreme. I’ve felt like they just don’t understand me, and I’ve felt like I don’t belong. And that’s really hard, and really sad.

But I know for certain that a major part of why I’ve been overly annoyed with my parents is because of myself. I’ve been stupidly stressed this summer. Dumb, I know, because it’s the summer. But between working long days and my hundred mile long to-do list, I’ve been very on edge, and any little thing could push me over, even if it wasn’t actually annoying at all. So while sometimes I’m sure whatever bothered me was actually bothersome, I know that most of the time I just needed to chill.

My parents aren’t perfect. Sometimes they make mistakes and sometimes they do dumb things. But I’m not perfect either, and I make even more mistakes and do even dumber things. Parenting is hard (or I assume as much) so I have to give them credit. My parents do so much for me, like buy me food and make me food and let me live in a lovely house and let me borrow the car and sew rehearsal skirts for me and pay for my education so like I should be kneeling at their feet whenever they walk in the door (but they decided to have hardwood throughout the house so I don’t think that’s happening).

I know sometimes I will be annoyed with my family because that’s just what happens when you spend a lot of time with the same people. But if I think my life is hard, their lives are just as hard or even harder, so I should take it easy on them. I’ve been trying really hard lately to appreciate my parents and thank them and respect them and open up to them and uninhibitedly love them more than I have been, and honestly I’ve felt so much better. I know in my heart that I do belong and that they do understand me, or they will if I let them.

Of course I don’t know everyone situations, but if you feel the parental struggle too, I really recommend you try this too. It’s hard stuff to deal with and admit to yourself, but it’s totally worth it. They’re your family and they love you; don’t make that hard for them.

Except while I was away one weekend my family ate some of my mint chocolate squares and that is one crime I can never forgive.


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