My 19th summer started off the same way it always did. I came home from school -- from my first year of college. I came home expecting to hang out with my friends, relax and work as a CNA at my local long-term care facility. The first week was filled with getting on a schedule, which I easily broke the second week of my break. I decided to go ahead and make plans to babysit for a family friend on the weekends for some extra cash. I enjoyed being a little busy, but not too busy that I never got to go out.
My first weekend home I had spent going to graduation parties of underclassmen that I never even really talked to, just to be nice. My friends and I had already been making plans for Memorial Day weekend. We planned on having a Mac and Cheese party, just making some really tasty mac and eating it while consuming alcohol. That was a night that changed my drinking life forever. I am aware I was drinking illegally, and I paid the consequences for my actions.
We all met at the location we had planned and got the party going. I had just come from work, so I was ready to relieve some stress and just hang out with my friends. Recently before, I had injured my foot and been in a walking boot, and had some low-dosage NSAID pain relievers, and I had taken them while I was at work. We started to drink a little after 11:30 p.m. and I did my usual, bouncing through a few different drinks faster than I should have. We had decided to go outside to sit on the pool deck.
It had been raining, but we still thought it was a good idea. I had been sitting on the edge, one foot in the pool talking just fine to my friends, and then I remember being rolled to my side, my friend yelling my name and holding me, and an EMT in my face asking me questions. That night was the first time I had ever been in an ambulance. I had a pseudo-seizure. That type of seizure is non-epileptic and mostly a mental defense system used when your body is too stressed out or traumatized. My mother was called and I was transported to the hospital. The next day, after I sobered up, I had a talk with my parents about the situation. They were extremely upset, but they were glad that my friends did the right thing.
That weekend was extremely stressful for my family. The night before my little “episode,” we had found out my 16-year-old brother and his 17-year-old girlfriend are having a baby. Not only were we all shocked, but we did not know how to handle this. My mother’s youngest sister also had a baby at a young age, so this was not the first time our family has faced this. For me, it was not a huge deal -- that is, until I realized what it actually meant for him. It meant he had to grow up much faster than any of his friends and even myself. He also had to give up his free time and take care of another person when he himself is still a child. Our family has faced so much already, so I strongly believe we can face this with just as much courage as we have with every other situation.
This summer has seen its ups and downs for my family, but we have been strong and got through the most difficult parts. With college beginning in just a few short weeks, I’d say I’ve had enough excitement for a while.