That night, I snuck out. But this time, it wasn't for teenage kicks or dirty tricks. I wasn't going to vandalize or drink or smoke or anything. I just put on my leather jacket, the one passed down from my father and still smelling like his cologne, and started walking.

I don't know how many miles I walked, but I just kept going and didn't stop. I walked all the way across town until I got when I wanted.

There I stood, in front of a stark white house, beautiful in its simplicity. The blue trim that once shone so bright was now faded to a dull blue-gray, some pieces missing. The lawn was overridden with weeds, unkempt from a year of emptiness. I stared in awe, feeling more pinpricks of tears in the corners of my eyes. Only one year had gone by since the last time I had seen this house, and already it was dilapidated.

This house, my home, was in shambles.

I just couldn't let this happen. They boarded up my home, kept the bad memories in just like I had been doing for so long. But just like I had been set free, so would my home. It wouldn't be tied to the past for any longer.

I'm not sure where it came from, but all of a sudden it was in my hands. I stared down, my fingers barely grasping it, numb from fear. A can of gasoline, the generic, red plastic container that held the key to freedom. This time, I wasn't doing it for fun or revenge or any petty thing most teenage rebels use as an excuse for their mischief. I was doing it for honor, for memory.

That night, I burned my parent's house to the ground. I poured the gasoline, lit the match, and watched the flames rise. They climbed up the siding of the house, searching. They devoured my home and everything inside it that was holding me back. The flames engulfed my fears and insecurities, my parents. It was a true funeral pyre — closure.

Then, I just began walking again, but this time, I had no mission. I didn't know where I was going and I didn't care. All I knew was that I was going to get out of here, out of this town, out of Jersey. Because I was finally free.