I believe the journey of life follows a predetermined pattern; we evolve from needing influence and guidance to finally reaching that point where our lives are up to us. I consider myself very lucky up to this point in my journey. Some people become sidetracked and wind up on a far different course than they initially planned, but the detours I made have only assisted in embellishing the individual instead of devouring it. According to Freud a person's most important period to grow personality ranges from birth to six years. In that span my biggest influences came from my family. When I think of that time before kindergarten, the single most important person to my development was my grandmother Ludmila. She had wisdom and tenderness so few possess. My parents were just finishing up college and working to keep up with bills and putting food on the table. Considering this was the early 90s in Europe, not everything was available to them, but they seemed to always manage. We lived in a two bedroom apartment on the fifth floor with my grandmother, and our two cats; Ksusha and Alisa. The apartment was old and the walls were filled up with my grandmother’s paintings. I spent the majority of my time with her. She taught me everything I needed to know, from learning how to walk, talk, write and draw. She taught me about the beauty of art and about different painters, it interested me and my love for art grew. She instilled a confidence in me that not everybody has, yet still I remained humble. I never acted my age, I always seemed more mature then I actually was and I think spending all that time with my grandmother contributed to it a lot. Ludmila didn’t believe in talking to me like a child, or treating me like one. She talked to me as if I was an adult, none of that sweet talking that parents usually do with their children. I became a chatter-box and would talk to everyone, and anyone. Which wasn’t necessarily a good thing, now that I look back to it, but everyone seemed to love listening to my ridiculous childish stories and talking to me. I grew up to be a confident and fearless child, full of adventure. Nobody couldn’t tell me I wasn’t smart, responsible or not brave enough to do anything. At a young age I knew, for the most part who I was and nobody would tell me otherwise. I think that’s what made me, in a way so unique and not like the rest of the children. In the short excerpt “Self- Reliance” by Ralph Waldo Emerson, he explains that you need to believe that what you stand for and what you believe in is true for you in your heart. Nobody can take that from you, “To believe your own thought, to believe that what is true for you in your own private heart, is true for all men, -- that is genius.” (Emerson, 127) The heart is your only truth. Your mind is not. Our minds can be deceitful, whereas our heart only brings truth. Such as when someone says, "I'm not good enough", "I'm a failure", "I'm ugly or fat", or "I'm worthless, unlovable", is deceiving to themselves. And when said enough they begin truly believing it, it sets them up to experience life and this world through the pain and sadness that they have accepted as being true. This is what happened to me when I stopped listening to my heart and started rebelling out as I got older and moved to a whole different atmosphere. Once I turned seven my father got a job offer in the United States, he left immediately and said that I would be seeing him in a few months. I didn’t really know what was going on at that age but I knew that my dad was half way across the world and that in a few months I would be there too. I fantasized about how I would be living in some town called Nashua, New Hampshire from talking to him over the phone every other day. Flying on a huge plane for the first time never seemed to faze me, I was so fascinated by it that I could hardly contain my excitement. I dreamed about the apartment we would be living in, and the fact that I would actually...
Cited: Anstendig, Linda, and David Hicks. "Salvation." Writing through Literature. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall, 1996. 86-88. Print.
Anstendig, Linda, and David Hicks. "Self-Reliance." Writing through Literature. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall, 1996. 127-29. Print.
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