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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Bitter and Sweet (05/28/09)

TITLE: Glances in the Rearview Mirror
By Julie Gregory


Driving away from my house one last time, I glance in my rearview mirror to catch a glimpse of the structure that I have called home for the last 30 years. The tears pooling in my eyes make it difficult to see but the memories of this house are so ingrained in my heart and mind that I can see it clearly with my eyes closed. I wipe the tears away and focus on the road ahead. The house Iím leaving behind is just a building after all. There are still many memories to be made in this lifetime.
But as I take one last glance, I am reminded of all the times I have glanced in my rearview mirror with bittersweet emotions. I remember the first time I pulled out of my parentsí driveway to go to college. There was one small opening among all of my belongings that allowed me to see out the rearview mirror. I can still remember crying as I drove away, even though I was excited about the adventures that were waiting. Leaving the security of home and realizing that I had finally reached adulthood was both scary and exciting, bitter and sweet.
This reminds me of a few years later when I was leaving college to start my new life in the business world. I was young, intelligent, and had the best education. There was no stopping me. It was sad to leave the brick buildings behind that had witnessed some of my biggest life lessons but I had realized this is just the order of life. I remember hugging my friends one last time after the graduation ceremony and then jumping in my loaded down car, staring out the rearview mirror as I eased towards my new life and my new adventures.
It was a couple of years down the road when I took another bittersweet glance out my rearview mirror. I was a newlywed. We had a beautiful ceremony at a church filled with our families and friends. I was excited and thrilled to enter the crazy and wonderful chapter in my life known as marriage. But there was still sadness in my heart as I realized that my parents were struggling with this new situation. Not that they werenít happy for me but we all knew that from here on out, our relationships were going to be different.
This blissful marriage has given me 3 beautiful children, all who are grown. I still remember each time I pulled out of the drive to take my children to their first day of kindergarten. I tried not to let them see me cry but how did those sweet little babies get big enough to go to school? And then there was the time that I drove my son and his date to freshman prom. He looked so grown and handsome in that suit. It wasnít the same little boy who came home every day when he was 8 with a skinned knee. I remember glancing in the rearview mirror each time I took one of my children to college. I was excited for their new adventure but my heart ached that their childhood was gone.
I am thankful that I have had such a rich life that is filled with many wonderful memories. Each bittersweet life-changing event is etched on my heart. I may live in many houses, have numerous jobs, and meet many friends, but no matter where I am or who Iím with, my bittersweet memories will remain. I anxiously wait in anticipation for the bittersweet opportunities that lie ahead.

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This article has been read 314 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Jeanne E Webster 06/08/09
A very delightful drive down memory lane with you! Those were the days; how quickly they pass. Thanks for sharing with us.

I think your article would make a smoother appearance if you would break up your sentences into a few more paragraphs.

You presented a very good theme and one of which all of us can relate.
Sara Harricharan 06/08/09
I love how your title fits this piece and every glance in the mirror leads to another precious memory. This was a creative way to tackle the topic. Nicely done!
diana kay06/10/09
good way to look back! thanks. again paragraphs would split it up. I look forward to reading more of your writing