The sounds of the TV filter into my room, the pretty new girl droning on about the "breaking news" and whatnot. My door has a knack for staying open, the lock on the doorknob doesn't fully latch on or something, but it's almost always never closed. And sounds from the adjacent kitchen squeeze in past the music from earphones.
My grandmother is making tea. My grandfather is in the living room. My mother is most probably asleep in her room, I can hear her soft snores if I strain enough. Or maybe it's just my mind supplying details I knew too well. A mug sits beside me on the bed, nestled in between my leg and a pillow to keep it from spilling, and I can detect a faint hint of cocoa in the air from my too cold drink.
I should be studying but instead I'm reading another novel. So I'm a bookworm, sue me. I've even got the glasses and cystic acne and allergies to qualify me for a spot on the nerd team. But for all my appearances imply, I couldn't stand the long hours studying and doing math and everything nerds seem to love. No, my expertise lies solely in literature.
I should be studying to be a journalist or a novelist or something that involves writing but no, I'm in nursing school and it's a drag. Sure, the people are nice and the teachers are hot. But it's not my dream.
Why am I not pursuing my dreams, you might ask? Well, if you cared enough to ask then you cared enough to know me, and I'm a marionette on a string and my family are my own personal puppeteers. They mean well, but they don't KNOW me. They don't know what I want, who I want to be, and they don't care enough to ask. I love them, but sometimes it's stifling.
They're suffocating me with their expectations and pressure and shackles in the form of words. It's like they're trying to live through me while simultaneously trying to live their own lives, and it makes everyone miserable. But of course, they don't see it. They just nag and complain and compare and put you down. They give you everything they want you to have, everything society deems important, everything everyone else wants, everything but what you want.
And I want to get away. But I can't. Because as much as they get on my nerves, I love them. I love how my grandfather falls asleep while watching basketball. I love how my grandmother always puts a rosary in my bag in case I forget accidentally on purpose. I love how my mother buys me chocolate croissants at the bakeshop around the corner from my house when she picks me up from school late.
I'm as much a part of them as they are a part of me and I can't escape that. I'm tied to my family, and I'll just have to make it work. Because family is as much about sacrifice as it is love.