I love to laminate. It’s an unconventional liking, I understand. But, compressing a piece of paper between two plastic sheets, covering it in a protective layer, keeping it pristine. I love that.
I wish I could laminate life. I want to cover life in that same plastic protection. When something is laminated, it doesn’t change. It doesn’t tear or rip or break or have a glass of milk spilled all over it.
And I’ve spilled a lot of milk in my day.
As I am about to leave high school and move away, I don’t want things to tear, change, have milk stains. I want to keep life from spinning too quickly into the future.
I understand that high school is hard. I’ve been through it. I know. And I know that sometimes, you, my lovely readers, have a family that is not what you need it to be. They frustrate you. They disagree. They misunderstand. But, a 2011 opinion article from CNN, still has truthful words for you to hear.
According to the article, “No parent enjoys being challenged by his or her children, and studies find that constant bickering and squabbling takes its toll on parents’ mental health.”
Not only does arguing with your parents negatively affect them, but someday, they won’t be there to argue with. The day will come when you can’t go back home and talk to your parents about life. Your siblings will someday have a world separate from yours. You won’t be under the same roof forever.
I’m sure many of you can’t wait for the day when you can be on your own. Some of you may strongly dislike or resent your family. You’d never wish to laminate life for fear you’d be stuck with these people forever. But for those of you that do have a great family to go back to, no matter how annoying you may find them, don’t take it for granted.
One day you will wish you could have laminated life. Could have kept it from growing, changing, tearing, wrinkling, and staining. When your mom is in a nursing home. When your siblings live on another planet. When your grandparents have passed. When holidays roll around, and you don’t see your aunts and uncles and cousins anymore.
I understand – it’s cliché. But clichés can be true. Family is important. Even now when there is tension and anger and sadness and division. They matter. When you and your mom always butt heads. She matters. When your dad doesn’t understand that you just want to hang with friends. He matters. When your siblings steal your things and lie about it later. They matter. Try to understand each other. Try to keep the family together. Try to keep relationships from being severed forever.
Because even though I want to laminate life, I can’t. And neither can you.