Sharp and spikey. Holly was a hard nut, she knew she was right every time and would fight anyone to prove it. She had been warned several times by her boss about her attitude, but like so many young business people, she could be very arrogant and snobbish.

Today she’d got into a battle with her elderly father, Joe. He had asked her to help him with his model train set. Really he had wanted a quiet word about her attitude ( She was twenty six and thought she knew all the answers) but she had refused. She told him train sets were for boys. She was going to go out and pamper herself and maybe buy a designer handbag.

Holly still lived at home, her mother cooked and cleaned for her, and her father supported her financially. She didn’t earn enough to buy anything decent in London and could not afford the deposit to rent a flat.

That night she came home late, she’d been to a party which had turned into a squabble, then an argument. She had slapped her best friend and drunk too much wine. She had told her manager, who was at the party, what she thought of her. She would probably be fired when she went into work on Monday morning….

So when she turned the key in the lock of her parents house she was hoping to creep up to bed and get some sleep. What she got instead was her parents standing there. Give me your key, her father said. You can sleep here tonight, but you leave in the morning.

Holly felt shocked and sick. Where shall I go? I don’t know and I don’t care. Your friend rang in tears and told us that you had slapped her! Your behaviour is totally unacceptable and unless you change we don’t want to see you again.

That was the day she changed. That was when she started working for a charity. That was when she learnt compassion. That was the day she grew up.

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