Changing Roles

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The contemporary American family is one that shows a picture perfect lifestyle of happiness and normalcy, but this normalcy can be challenged by anything. The present war our country is engaged in is one factor that has changed the lives of many families since it began. Husbands, sons, and sometimes even mothers and daughters are leaving their homes to fight in the war with Iraq. If the traditional American family consists of a husband, wife, and two or more children living in suburbia, my family could once have easily represented it. However, when our country went to war, my dad’s military-career transferred him thousand’s of miles across the ocean disrupting almost every aspect of our once, near perfect household. Most of my life I have had a very comfortable, no worries lifestyle. I was raised by both my parents in a nice home just outside of a pretty big city; we lived there almost eleven years of my life until we moved to a bigger home in a different side of town. My mom became pregnant after we moved into our new house and we soon celebrated the arrival of my sister. After my sister was born our family seemed to change in some ways. I noticed my parents were becoming more involved with both of our schools and doing more parental things. Both of my parents really settled down what little wild youthfulness was still left inside of them; our family was becoming very contemporary and more of the picturesque family most view as normal. My mom didn’t work, but rather stayed home and did the housewife thing while raising my sister and I. My dad has a job in the military, which often times calls him to placed around the country for a few days at a time but never for long. I remember the day I found out my dad had to leave for Iraq. It struck me with different emotions. I was sad for my dad and our family, but I was also shocked because I had never thought this was going to happen to me, to my family. My mom did not take it well. She was very upset because my dad was going to have to leave. Although we knew that my dad, being in the position he is in, would probably avoid much combat, we were still scared, angry and confused as to why this was happening to us. We understood that our country needed my dad, but at that moment it was hard to find much patriotism. We had a few weeks left before my dad left. We didn’t know when he was coming back or what all he w... ... middle of paper ... ...e able to come home. It was an unexpected but wonderful surprise. When my dad returned things almost immediately went back to the way they were when he was around, which was good, but at the same time my mom was doing things that she had really never done before. This change in my mom continued even when my dad was back. He had some trouble at first adjusting to my mom’s new career, but everything worked out okay. The experience I had with my dad leaving is one that many families face. Not every family is as lucky, being so that their father leaves the family to go fight in a war or for some other reason, most are just deadbeats and leave for their own personal reasons. My dad leaving at first turned our family upside down, throwing what we had always known into something totally different, but as time wore on we came to realize that things would be okay. We grew to accept that this experience was difficult, but out of it came positive things. My dad’s leaving challenged my mom’s role as a simple housewife, which then challenged my mom to take over our household. She raised us alone, got a job, and found more self-confidence within herself. My family’s change did a lot of good.

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