It was a Friday afternoon in May of my freshman year when my Dad met me at the front door. This was odd, but I didn't think much of it at the time since he was supposed to have had a doctor's appointment that morning. I had been in a good mood walking home since had received an A on one of the hardest global history tests of the year, and I was thinking of the fortunes that were coming my way as the grass grew untamed. I said hello to my dad and went to the kitchen to prepare a snack before I went off to mow. From behind I heard my father's distinctive voice say, "Eric, I need to talk to you."
I turned around to see a man- who normally is clean-shaven with combed hair and a freshly ironed shirt, slumped over in a wrinkled t-shirt and a puffy face. He explained to me in an uncharacteristic subdued voice that he had been laid off of work that morning and that there would be some changes around the house. I found myself stupefied and left the house to mow.
While most people find mowing the lawn a task which should be put off as long as possible, I find it quite relaxing since it gives me time to think and let my mind wander. This day was different. All I could think about was what just happened. "He'd worked at Ross for over 20 years. Things were going great. Why does he always screw up things when they are going so well? What can he do about it?" I angrily worked my way through one lawn, two lawns, five lawns trying to put my best face forward as I talked to my customers. All I could think about was how my dad fucked up.
Changes around the house came slowly; we stopped going out to dinner as often and spent less at the grocery store. Then Mom canceled cable, something I fought at first but eventually accepted. I had to stop shooting archery. We stopped going shopping almost altogether. I began to have to pay for anything extra that I wanted. These changes were accompanied by constant arguing about money. Things hit an all time low when my mom...
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