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So, like many other people in this world, I am a child who comes from a divorced family. The only difference with me is that I was too young to understand when my parents split up, so I grew up not knowing any different. I thought it was normal. When I found out that someone actually lived with both of their parents, I figured they were of a different species.

As I grew up, I realized that these other people all looked at me that way. Although this seems like its going in a sad direction, I actually love my life and wouldn’t have it any other way. The advantage of not having to actually deal with the divorce part worked out a lot in my favor.

I was just around for the aftermath, which included getting double the amount of presents for Christmas, double the attention, double the love, and getting to live two different lives. When I am with my mom, it's just me and her, which is the fun yet dysfunctional aspect of it.

When I’m with my dad, it’s sort of the average all-American family including two kids, a dog, and a white picket fence — without the picket fence. I have a stepmother who was always good to me, and a younger brother and sister who I like to pretend to fight with just so I get the full stereotypical family experience. (I am a glass-half-full kind of girl, I guess). That’s just a little background check on me.

I am turning 21 years old on Thanksgiving Day. Obviously it will be hard to choose who to spend it with, being that it is also a holiday. Rather than worry, I just handle situations like this, so instead of choosing sides, I will make it sort of a game. I figure I’ll take myself on tour. I will stay with my mom for dinner, then go to one of my Aunt’s house’s, then my other Aunts’ house, and then to see my Father.

I am complicated, but I can’t help but to enjoy it. I could look at it from so many different ways and turn it into a bad situation. Don’t get me wrong, sometimes I have my moments where I think I wanted it different, but then I stop myself and realize that the only thing that matters in life is that you are healthy and loved. I am eligible for both of those things, so I stop being upset, and start looking at the things I have to appreciate.

Whenever you have a moment of doubt or self-pity, no matter how bad your situation is, remember there’s always someone who has it one step worse than you. Then just turn yourself around and realize how happy that lesser person would be, if they were you at this moment.

I was always very mature for my age, and due to my set of experiences I have great rationalization skills. Sometimes this is bad, like when I fail a test or break something, but mainly it’s a good trait. Because I have now dealt with 3 divorces myself, I have a few personality traits from everyone. I’m not Jekyl and Hyde — don’t worry — I just mean that when I look at a situation, I can easily see it from many different points of view without just jumping to conclusion. Thank goodness I’ve been surrounded by good people.

I am a stronger person because of the life I have lived. The only reason I turned out so sane is because no one ever made me feel like I was any different because my parents were divorced. Everyone loved me even more to compensate for it, and that’s the only reason I was never the angry or rebellious type. I never felt unwanted and I was always included in everything, whether it was a vacation or a baseball game. There was never a moment that even gave me the option to feel upset or resentful. It all comes back to the theory that you are who you surround yourself with. This is the only reason that I not only turned out OK, but I turned out great!

I’ve experienced good and bad in every situation so far which is why I can appreciate what I have and accept things for what they are, and make the best of them. I guess what I am trying to tell you is that I turned out OK.

Now I’m off to pick out my "Lycra Thanksgiving Tour outfit." No choice, I’ve got 5 stops of turkey and pie ahead of me.

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