You can’t just take a kid from a bad situation and plop them into a better environment and expect them to act as if they had always lived that life. You can’t expect them to just be grateful to be there and adjust. They have so much to unpack. Clothes and whatever other tawdry belongings they might have will be swiftly and neatly stowed away. What remains in the darkest unseen corners of the last trash bag they brought with them is all the years of pain, hurt, shame, and anger they have been dragging behind them. I stayed away and didn’t tell them where I was that weekend. I returned after school that Monday, I knew that I probably wouldn’t live there long, and I knew I didn’t want to go back to my mom. I had no idea what I was going to do. I felt numb nothing mattered except finishing school, so I could get into a college to get away from everyone and everything I knew
I had all the hormones, emotions, and anger of a normal teenage girl added with a difficult childhood, abuse, and neglect. In my mind I was GROWN. I examined many of the “adults” in my life and was confident that I was their equal or superior in a multitude of ways. I watched how many of them lived their lives and vowed that I would not live my life like them. They would serve an anti-example of how to live my life. I worked, saved money, I was responsible for two kids, and I knew Education was the key to changing my situation because no one was coming to save me. I would have to save myself, not my “real” mom, not my aunts, not my dad, no one. I would have to save me.
Stacks were a hair style from the late 80s and early 90s and if your stacks were on point it could totally change your young life. It sounds crazy right that a hair style could have such a big impact on one’s life but it’s true. Lol! As we talked she mentioned how when she transitioned from getting her hair done in the kitchen to actually going to a real shop she got her first boyfriend!! We laughed but she said, “it was like magic”. One day she was just regular old Candy, and nobody was checking for her but the day she her stacks got done right “it was on and poppin!”
Its odd but I have never been a super fan of another human. Yes, I really enjoy the things that artist create, but I have never owned a poster of anyone. I have never been a crazy screaming teen fan girl, hell I barely put my hands in the air because I actually do care. I would find myself at Saints skating rink bopping along to music in the party room looking at the total immersion and joy of my friends and wondering what that must be like. To allow yourself to just be so completely into a person or song that you lose your mind when they walk in the room or you simply hear the song.
another odd fact about me was that sometimes my life had theme music, sometimes it was a popular song of the day but often it was like theme music theme music…lol Sometimes when I was running it would be that sound from the Bionic Man “Beennn nuh-nuh-nuh-nuh”, if I was climbing a tree it would be orchestra music from Indiana Jones “Dun dunanta dunantan duntan duntan dyantan duntan dun dun dun dun dun atan dun dunn dun dun duntan duntan duntan”, and on days that were just good it would be the theme from Greatest American Hero!
Looking back, I truly feel as if every time I thought I couldn’t make it or wanted to just drown myself in a sea of my own, tears something or someone wonderful would be integrated into my life. Most times it was ephemeral, but it was always enough to keep me in afloat with dryland in sight.
Laughter erupted! The next thing I know everyone was talking about my family living under bushes, being homeless, not having clothes, and on and on. I was so ashamed. I felt my heart beating in my chest as I tried to come up with a smart sassy rebuttal, but I didn’t have one.
I used to imagine that the splattered seeds mixed with the green and white chunks of Osage-orange flesh were what brains on the pavement would look like. I thought that until a few kids and I stumbled on a bunch of blood and what appeared to be brain matter on the ground behind a building on our walk to school just about a week before. It was not the same, at all! We, I mean I, poked at some of the larger greyish chunks with a pencil from my bag. I was so fascinated by the soft and delicateness of it. It didn’t seem reasonable that this soft fragile mass could be the source of who we were. I could not comprehend what happened to the magic of the memories, thoughts, and love as the neurons that produced them lay in the street.
Life is crazy, one day you are reading encyclopedias at your grandma’s house and pretending to be an adventurer searching for treasure and the next you are holding a knife and yelling “get out or I will fucking kill you” at the top of your lungs. A lot can change in a very short span of time, the space between Raiders of the Lost Ark and Romancing the Stone was only about three years or so. After those three years my childhood ended, my life changed in so many ways…
I was seven when the Indiana Jones and The Raiders of the Lost Ark came out and ten when Romancing the Stone hit the big screen. I was instantly in love and KNEW that I would one day be an archaeologist traveling the world hunting down treasure and finding romance as I did. I will admit that prior to this revelation, I thought I was going to be an astronaut and have space adventures like in Star Wars but that was back when I was a little kid. Raiders and Romancing the Stone came out in the early 80s I was much more mature by then and therefore able to make more realistic life choices! LMAO!