Philanthro-me: Part 3 (Ages 20)

“Giving as a Path to Sanity”

A few months after my 20th birthday, my oldest brother passed away in his sleep at the age of 29. He had been diabetic since childhood, and didn’t care enough to take proper care of himself. Despite the nine-year age difference, he was the sibling I had felt closest to.  I think it was his passing that fueled a stunning revelation: I had survived my teen years, and had a full life ahead of me.

(It isn’t until just now that I see the ironical twist of how losing a sister at 10 doused my intention for life, while losing a brother at 20 ignited it.)

That May, I enrolled in a night class at a local college and began my 12 year journey towards a bachelor’s degree in Accounting. My boyfriend at the time was threatened by my sudden interest in life, and told me I had to either quit school or move out. The dysfunctional nature of our relationship was becoming increasingly evident to me, which made for an easy choice. I packed up my few belongings and moved in with my mother.

In a moment of sanity, I would give up despondency in favor of optimism.

(to be continued . . . )

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