I often wonder what my life would be like if I had taken a different route. I remember the day as if it was yesterday, August 25th, 2006. I was only eight years old when I was separated from my mother. That day was the beginning of my new life with my foreign father and unfamiliar stepmother. Prior to this, the memories I had of my father were very faint; I would only see him once a year when he would come to visit my brother and I. The journey I was about to embark on was not one of a few hours in a car, but overseas. I was leaving the only place I had ever known; the Dominican Republic to come live in Canada. That night, when I got off the plane, I knew my life had changed forever.
Imagine, arriving in a new country, not knowing the language, the culture, or lifestyle. I was not certain of where Canada was located, for all I knew, it was part of the United States. As an eight-year-old you are not aware of other countries and their culture. Being so young and naive, I believed my father when he told me that Canada was extremely cold and culturally diversed. I was scared. I did not want to start a new life with strangers who knew nothing about me, but it 's not like I had a choice.
Once I stepped into my new home from the airport that afternoon, the amount of anxiety little eight-year-old me was feeling was overwhelming. It had only been a few hours since I last saw my mother but my memory of her already seemed very distant. It was time for me to meet my stepmom who I had only met once before, when I was four. She introduced me to my new baby sister for the first time; who started to cry at the sight of me. A new country, new parents, and a new sister, it was all too much for my young mind to handle. At...
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...e some days are not easy at home, I have learned to manipulate my emotional state. I do this by thinking positively and not allowing myself to be haunted by the dark feelings I experience when my father, stepmom and I argue. The mind is a powerful thing; it has the power to dictate your attitude, so I decided to have a positive mind set towards my relationship with my parents, my attitude will correlate. I had to let go of my old home and accept my new one.
Choosing between the happiness of yourself and your loved ones, is a challenge many people face. Following through with the decision to stay was one of the best choices I have made in my life because it has altered my future for the better. The relationship between my father, stepmother and I has improved tremendously. By choosing to remain in Canada, I was granted the opportunity to create a life for myself.
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