My father is a very hard worker. My mother is very strong willed.

I grew up with these images of them, strong and determined, with their, “you can do anything you put your mind to,” and their, “everything will be okay,” phrases playing in the back of my mind.

When I failed, they picked me up. When I faltered, and strayed off the right path, they led me back. And they did it with a smile on their face.

But now, I look around and I see that things aren’t as they used to be; my father sits in the garage alone, a light beer in one hand, gazing at his 2005 Harley Davidson motorcycle. His demeanor is childish, sad, like he’s watching someone die.

My mother sits on the couch, wearing red pajamas that are way too big on her, watching football mindlessly. No smile, no sparkle in the eye for the touchdown her team made: she just looks old and hopeless. And she’s only 42.

I grew up thinking that my parents were superheroes: they could get through anything.

Now, I’m not so sure where our paths lead.

View this story's 2 comments.