"Maa! I'm 13. Yay! I’m a year older. I'm feeling like a grown up today. Ha Ha...", I shouted as I got up. I'm very excited, it's my birthday today and I'm happy like crazy. Mom kissed me on my forehead and wished me a very happy birthday. I ran around the house, I woke up my sister out of excitement. She’s the bossy one, but today is the day when she has to take my orders. Oh! Man, I am so excited. I searched the house in search for dad, but he was nowhere to be found. Then I asked my mom, and she replied that he had some work that needed to be taken care of so he went to his office. But she also said that he'll be back in no time. My dad never forgets my birthday. I spent the entire day sleeping and doing nothing. I was waiting for night. I heard some voices, and there I saw dad coming, and along with him were three other people- two men and a woman. They all were his business partners. I ran towards my dad, and I greeted the other people. The table was set, I saw my beautiful cake, a layer of red velvet, topped with an almond layer and ice cream on top. Oh! It looked tasty. I cut my cake, got many gifts, I ate too much and I was very full, and I slept because I was too tired. At night, I heard someone sobbing, but I couldn't make out who, so I thought I had a dream and again went back to sleep. The next day, I got up, got ready for school and I headed along to my bus stop. I thought about my mom, how tired her eyes looked, like she had been crying the whole night. But I didn't put so much thought into the matter. Things were fine, and day by day I saw my mom look more and more tired and sad. Even my sister was sad, but I didn't know what was going on, I thought it was because of my sister‘s troubles in her school. But then one day as I was returning home, I caught my mom and my sister crying. "Forget him, he's not good enough for you. We no longer mean anything to him", I heard my sister talking to my mom. I asked what was going on, but no one replied. I made them speak the truth. My sister said that our dad was having an affair, with his partner, the woman that came to my house on my birthday, and he was leaving all of us. My heart was ripped out. I couldn’t believe those words, I...uhh it was my dad. He is not the kind of person to leave his family. I couldn't think and I felt powerless. I could do nothing about it. I just stayed beside my mother and my sister, and all I could do weep with them. I felt weak, too weak to do anything. I hated myself for not being able to do anything for my mom, the only woman I will ever love more than myself, the only woman who went through all the troubles to bring me into this world. And all for what? To wait for the day her husband leaves her alone with two daughters. I am 13 for god's sake, I am still a child, unaware of the world around me, unknown to how cruel people can be, how one can come and destroy lives around in a snap, just like that. Every day, I wake up, telling myself that it was a bad dream but for how long? I see my mom in a terrible state, my jolly sister now becoming more serious day by day. I blamed myself for so many reasons, my dad left our home officially on my birthday, and I see my mom cry daily for him, but I can't do anything about it. All I did was lay on her lap and let the tears fall on my face. One cannot imagine how much it hurts; how much it hurts when someone you love so much and believed in more than yourself breaks the trust you had in them after having spent so many years together; how much it hurts to find out that the person for whom you fought with the world, for whom you gave up your family, your dreams, leaves you to live your life alone for the rest of your life; how much it hurts when you find out that you’re not your father’s princess anymore. I saw my dad coming home every day, begging my mom to sign the divorce papers, but she refused. She has been in love with her husband for 15 years, and she can never forget the memories they created, the time they spent, she is just not ready to give up her marriage, her life. Because if she does, she fears that me and my sister would have to suffer, and she is putting her life at stake for us. This makes me cry my heart out, and I know the times I have cried in my room, the times I thought of killing my dad and myself, the fights I had with him and how I swore in front of him, how I killed the innocent me and let my dark side take over me. I was a very changed person, I pledged myself not to be jolly and fun anymore, not to trust everyone and wear my heart on my sleeve anymore, to be a serious and a boring person. I hated men, and I hated myself even more. I saw the lowest moments, the times we had no money, the times every so-called relatives would turn their backs on us and no one would be there standing next to my mom and giving her the strength to fight this through. I and my sister were her only strength, and they both became mine. Since then, I’ve had to let go of many people in my life, my so-called grandma who blamed my mom for everything that happened, my so-called uncles and relatives and sisters. People are selfish, they like to use someone, but when it’s the time to pay their debt, they run away like cowards. It’s been 5 years, and I’ve grown up to be a decent girl. People may not like me, but I am who I am. Thanks to that incident, I am now a different person, I found the new me. I learned to put my heart out, I decided to get hurt by trusting others, because if you don’t, you will never know what life has decided for you. You might be able to find the most amazing people around you, like I did. I have friends, brothers, loved ones who are always there for me, to guide me through my darkness and show me the way where I can find happiness. And along with me, I’ll never forget to take my mom and my sister.