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Granddad; Common App: Significant person and influence essay


BlackWaltzIV 5 / 10  
Dec 29, 2012   #1
Hi,
Thanks for your time. I am, of course, open to all criticisms. I'm from Britain btw.
Indicate a person who has had a significant influence on you, and describe that influence.

Here goes:

Indicate a person who has had a significant influence on you, and describe that influence.

[Please note that this is not a cry for sympathy; I respect your time and your institutions more than that.]

The sight of his car drained away the shallow joys of the day. School was an escape, but now reality dawned. Granddad was here to take me home because my father's manic depression had once again gripped the family, and my mother was now occupied in calming him down or convincing the doctors to help.

Granddad is of the 'old-school': a stiff-upper lipped, working class Northerner, and his influences on me are twofold.
At the age of 15 I had a routine; it was practically set in stone: Wake up, school, home, dinner, revise, TV, sleep. It was only when this was replaced with uncertainty and turmoil: nights at friends houses, takeaway meals, random days off school, that I recognised the importance of stability in a young person's life. Granddad always had the same jacket on, the same radio station blaring in his car, and the ashtray that hadn't been emptied of old sweet wrappers. He read the same paper and told the same war stories! This was an island of assurance, a bastion against the icy ocean of insecurity and hopelessness; and yet it was so simple, he probably doesn't even know he was doing it. I was taught the importance of just turning up, being some sort of consistency and showing people that there is always some ledge to cling to, no matter how ambiguous, or how previously unimportant and insignificant it may appear when juxtaposed with your life before whatever cataclysm you have endured.

Within this, however, Granddad was an expert at changing the subject and diverting my attention away from the situation at home. I don't believe he thought it worked; it was just the only tool the culture he grew up in gave him to tackle such 'uncouth' issues. At times I wanted to yell at him to just talk about something relevant to my father. I didn't as to not push an ill-equipped old man, yet he, a typical example of an antiquated attitude to mental health and other such 'weaknesses' bread into him by a repressed, mistaken for a reserved, country, has lead me to realise that sometimes the most deep-rooted societal norms are utter rubbish. Ironically, I am a hypocrite, since I have yet to break this mold fully. However, just being made aware of the burden that can be lifted by expression is an influence I cannot be more thankful for moving forward into the inevitable unknowns of my life.

Ultimately, in a time of my great need he supported me by not needing anything from me. He gave me all of his time and patience and love when nobody else could. I wish that I never have to be what Granddad was to me to anybody else, because then another must have experienced a comparable time of misery as I did, but given his influences on me, I know that should it be necessary, the my devoted presence to someone else may be all they need.
Mein 4 / 22 2  
Dec 29, 2012   #2
and my mother was now occupied calming him down or convincing the doctors to help.

no matter how ambiguous, unimportant and insignificant it may appear when

I think you need to work on the opening of the third paragraph. It doesn't connect with the second paragraph.

Ultimately, in a time of my great need he supported me without needing anything from me. He gave me all of his time, patience, and love when nobody else could. I wish that I never have to be what Granddad was to me to anybody else (it's hard to understand), because then another must have experienced a comparable time of misery as I did, but given his influences on me, I know that should it be necessary, then I will give my devoted presence to someone elsemay be all they need (again, I don't understand this part).
OP BlackWaltzIV 5 / 10  
Dec 29, 2012   #3
How above

'Despite this, Granddad was an expert at changing the subject...'?
OP BlackWaltzIV 5 / 10  
Dec 29, 2012   #4
How about this as a rework of the final part:

"Ultimately, in a time of great need he supported me by not needing anything from me. He gave me all of his time, patience and love when nobody else could. Should it be necessary, I now know that by being an approachable, reliable and aware person, I can help those with their isolating, invisible wounds."
OP BlackWaltzIV 5 / 10  
Dec 29, 2012   #5
Thank you so much. I fresh pair of eyes really does make a difference- I think your right on your suggestions.

Be happy to help you
Mein 4 / 22 2  
Dec 29, 2012   #6
The rework in the final is good.
Can I take that your grandfather is kind of stubborn or has some sense of duty ? (it's hard to tell, but it's people that dislike to avoid subject) You can use that as a contrast to his avoidance.

Oh, can you help me on my essay too? Especially on my letter essay.


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