Student Spotlight: Dependent to Independent

March 02, 2015

Student Spotlight: Cynthia Montoya

By Cynthia Montoya, Columbus Community High School junior

Could you ever imagine living without your family as a teenager? Well that situation is what occurred in my life, and let me tell you it has not been easy.

Born as the first child, my parents were always very strict on me, which made me the person I am today. Growing up with one sister and two brothers, things were pretty insane around the farm. I was the type of person who always thought about the future and about my dreams and goals, and I couldn’t wait to be out of the house and living my own life.

Like most teenagers, my relationship with my parents wasn’t always the best. I was never allowed to go on dates, go to sleepovers, or simply hang out with my friends. I started to develop much exasperation and it caused me a lot of anguish, and I blamed my parents for how I felt. As years passed, I started to mature and realize they do what they do because they love me and want the best for me.

This past December my entire family moved to Texas because my dad got a much better job. I chose to stay in Columbus Junction; I wanted to attend the University of Iowa and I felt like I would be able to develop myself more as a person there. I had already made connections there because of Upward Bound, and after crying and begging to stay, my parents’ minds suddenly shifted and they decided it would do me good to keep my grandma company. Saying goodbye to my siblings was the absolute hardest thing I had ever endured. I would only see my family about twice a year now.

It’s true what they say, “You don’t know what you have until it’s gone”. Once they were gone, I realized what my parents did for me and how grateful I now was wishing I could go back in time and be more appreciative. I now know what great parents I have and how much they truly mean to me.

These past months haven’t been easy but with my crazy busy schedule and support from my family, boyfriend, and friends I have managed to keep my head up and keep working hard, because life is truly amazing. All I can say is I am beyond excited to see what opportunities await me, as I proceed through this journey we call life.

My parents always said, “Sacrifice the present for the future,” which stuck to me ever since.  After all the travails I have experienced in my life they have made me realize nothing in life is achievable without walking in integrity. Therefore I do what I do to better myself and make my parents proud.

The moment I told my family goodbye was a very impactful one; knowing they had been with me my whole life to now only seeing them a couple times a year was mind boggling. As I grew up more, I knew the window of my independence was getting closer. As I begin to finish my high school career, I am excited to finally become independent by attending a university next fall and use the knowledge my parents gave me.