I recently went to my home state to visit my parents--one last visit before I get married and lives change, etc. As I was sleeping in my childhood room, remembering how many wall color changes I had gone through, remnants of my past sitting on the two bookshelves, collecting dust, I got a little bit sad. I knew that that was the last time I was going to be sleeping in that bed in that room colored that color. My dad is turning my room into his office and the space that is now his office? It's going to be a gym/play room/entertaining room. As I packed up the dolls, stuff animals, trophies, memories, I felt like I was growing up for real. If being in my mid-twenties, thinking all the college students bopping around town are really young wasn't enough, getting married and packing up my childhood room was the final straw. I am officially a grown up. No more pretending when I go home; no more glow in the dark stars at night; no more boy bands covering my walls. For the first time in my life, I feel like everything is different. For a day or two I was sad. I wondered if growing up was exactly what I wanted. Part of me wanted to revert back to wearing my over sized t-shirts and boxers to bed and crawling into my teddy bear flannel sheets, but the more I think about it, I realize that this is what my parents raised me to do. I was meant to be independent.  All those days and nights in my room, all the tea times and games of house, photo shoots and karaoke that my room witnessed were leading me up to this point in my life. While I can look back at my childhood all day long, wishing I could somehow preserve it, I need to only look forward. I am grateful for the childhood I had, and even more, I'm grateful for the person my parents raised me to become. This week, I encourage you to thank the people that raised you to become the person you are today, because sometimes I think we forget.

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