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Cassie's family was poor, but despite having financial problems they always managed to find love and some happiness together - at least when she was younger. But that didn't mean it wasn't hard on her growing up, on all of them really.
It was a tough childhood with her dad having to go wherever he could find work, and her Mom and her being alone most of the time. Her Mom was always super protective of her, Cassie being an only child, and she was almost like a single mother because Cassie's Dad was hardly ever home, and all of that pressure and stress really put a strain on her Mom's mind.
Without any funds for medical treatment, for when Cassie got sick, or for her Mom's mental health with all that financial stress and pressure, and loneliness, everything got worse.
But despite all of that, with the love she knew was there at home no matter what the circumstances were, Cassie managed to stay happy as she was growing up, and, working hard, she was able to do really well at school. Focusing on her studies actually helped her get through some of the tough times at home - something to focus on and distract her from the stress and pressure her Mom and Dad were under.
But finally, when Cassie was 13 years old, her Dad got a big break! A good paying job that he was perfect for and things started to turn around for them, started actually going well. All of a sudden they didn't have to struggle to afford the basic necessities, and they could even afford things that felt like real luxuries - like having their own car.
Unfortunately, that good luck didn't last long. Her Dad's new boss turned out to be a con man and a crook. Cassie's Dad ended up losing the car, and all the money he had made for the family, leaving the whole family with very little hope. They were left almost penniless and her Dad had to get back on the road looking for hard labor for even less pay.
All those bills and her Dad traveling for work took a tough toll on her Mother, in fact, the stress and mental pressure it all caused led to a moment that would change Cassie's life forever. Her Mother's mental illness and her challenges with depression worsened into severe paranoia and bipolar disorder, and those conditions led to a tragic event that left her Mother unable to take care of Cassie anymore.
With her Mother needing care, and her Father still required to be away for work, Cassie felt like she was left without a family, and with nobody to take care of her. She felt alone and hopeless - at such a young age Cassie felt like she couldn't go on.
With nothing left to do she finally reached out for help and called her Aunt and Uncle and they were so kind and generous and agreed to take Cassie in as her guardians. She joined their family - her Aunt and Uncle and her two cousins.
Now Cassie is seventeen years old, in her final year at high school. And, it has been hard for her to adjust to a new lifestyle with her Aunt and Uncle and cousins - a life where money and finances aren't a problem, and painful when she thinks about her parents are still struggling to stay healthy and make ends meet.
But working hard on school, and keeping her studies a priority, while still thinking of what happened in the past, keeps her motivated and driven to work as hard as she can so that one day she could potentially provide for her parents in ways that they hadn't been able to, despite all of their love and hard work. She plans to ensure this does not have one of those tragic endings. She thought, "My parents love me and someday I will help them out of their bad situation with my love. We will be a family again. Just because my parents couldn't take care of me anymore, does not mean they don't love me."
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