My uncle is an alcoholic. There. I said it. I have been told all my life, jokingly, "You are just like your uncle!" I was proud at first. He was athletic and a frim believer in God. Truthdaully, I admired him, until he started drinking. I witnessed his harshness with my cousins and aunt. When he got on to McLain, his oldest child, for something she did not do, I jumped to her defense.
"Do not yell at her," I said, calmly.
"Mason," he answered warningly.
"You cannot get on to me," I stated, matter-of-factly.
Right then and there, I realized I am not going to be like my uncle. I am not going to turn out like him. I will never drink, I promised myselp. Not long after that promise, my mom wanted me to taste the tiniest sip of Kahlua, a 'yummy liqueur' as she put it. I knew that sip would not do any real harm, but I stayed true to myself.
"No thank you," I said.
"It's a sip, Mas," Mom answered.
"Mom, you have always said I am just like my uncle. I may be ornery. I may be hard-headed, but I can promise I am NOT going to be a selfish alcoholic."
And that was that. She never said one more word abouth that tiny sip. I knew she was proud that I realized the ugly side of being just alike, and I was standing up against it.