Learning To Love You More




Assignment #14
Write your life story in less than a day.

Columbus, Ohio USA



I entered this world, a bundle of drama, an unexpected, unplanned pregnancy. I was an attendant to my mom and dad's wedding, three months along, nestled in my mother's womb. She had trouble zipping up her gown. My dad's family refused to attend, disgusted about the creation of me.
I would assume I arrived on a sunny, blue skied day on May 8, 1985, being thats the usual nature of Grass Valley, CA. My mom had one month before she turned twenty, my dad a ripe nineteen. They lived with my grandparents until I was six months old. My parents hit the road one night after my dad had worked a twenty four hour shift, on their way to a new life. Their venture would soon take them to Wyoming for the oilfields, decent work and a better chance to support me.
Midway through their drive along the California freeway they decided to take a pit stop at a local motel to catch some sleep. Upon their arrival to the Motel six they decided they were not as tired as they thought, checked out of the motel and were back on the night time freeways.
My dad awoke with a jolt after realizing he had drifted off the freeway eventually hitting a tree. He had fallen asleep behind the wheel. A pizza box had flown off the dashboard and struck me in the forehead, I was smiling from shock. My dad wrapped be his brown, quilted jacket and ran down the side of the freeway trying to flag someone down. Cars passed without stopping, my dad could see my white skull.
My mom and I were life flighted to Reno, NV. Thirty-two stitches left a scar I still look at in the mirror every day.
After the healing that takes place after an accident was complete we moved to a couple different towns in Wyoming. Eventually, we settled in a place where hot springs bubble and mineral scents fill the air. When everyone else smelled sulfur and rotten eggs, I smelled home. We lived in the apartment above my first grade teachers garage, by this time my sister Katie had been born, my parents may have been struggling, but we never knew it.
A nail stuck out of the wood floor and after stubbing my toe on it numerous times, I often wondered why nobody pounded back in place.
Later we moved to 1234 Broadway, I remember feeling lucky that I had an easy address to remember. Me an my mom would only have to practice our phone number. We had a nice yard with a lilac bush that I used to fall asleep under. I had a little orange striped kitten, that we called Brawny. We went out of town one weekend and returned to find Brawny suffocated in the barbeque. It just so happens the neighbor boy Matt had been playing with Brawny. Brawny scratched him and being allergic to cats he got scared so he shoved Brawny in the barbecue and shut the lid. We replaced brawny with a white cat I named Pretty Kitty Mow-Mow.
I met Gena when I was four during Sunday school, by first grade we were best friends. Our dads both worked in the oilfields, her dad Jason, was my dad's employer. Even though our family's came from two very different situations, our friendship was never once affected. When I would spend the night at Gena's house on top of the hill I would stare out their huge bay window down below at the lights shining out of my own home and become terribly homesick. It would become routine for her dad Jason, to have to drive me home in the middle of the night, Gena in tow to spend the remainder of the night at my house. They never once complained.
My dad was transferred to a windy Wyoming town three hours away during the summer before second grade. I can remember riding in the big bouncy U-Haul truck seat next to my dad, surrounded by his things, armwrestling trophies, a deer mount and some mountain dew cans. He was barely twenty five. I recall my head being full of thoughts of Gena, wondering if we would remain best friends forever, while Pretty Kitty Mow-Mow howled from her cage below my feet.
A new town, a new school, I was frozen not knowing a single soul, besides my sister who was in a different class. I wouldn't speak just sat there smiling from shock. I never knew where the bathroom was, and couldn't muster up the courage to ask, so I had an accident in my pants. My sister and I held hands on the playground, I asked her if she could tell I peed my pants, she lied and said no, but all that mattered is that I beleived her then, because knowing the truth would have shoved me further into my shell.
Jillian Jenkins was the first friend I made in my new town. She was very shy too, but we could talk easily to eachother. We would bring our multi colored trolls to school with us everyday and dump them all out on the sidewalk to play with during recess, nobody ever joined us, we played alone.
Third grade introduced me to a new enviroment once again, it was in a new school across town, I was sad to be seperate from my sister Katie. My third grade teacher, introduced me to her daughter Sarah. I went to her house and played on her swingset all day, she seemed interested in me so I filled her in on my best friend Miki, how I missed her but still wrote her letters all the time. Sarah was the first girlfriend I talked about boys with. She helped me come out of my shell. After school we felt cool because when the other kids went home we got to stay and draw on her mom's chalkboard and play with hoola hoops in the desserted hallways. I remember Sarah dressing up as pippy long stalking one day, she even had the wires in her braids to make them stick straight out, there were times when I wanted to be just like her.
My circle of friends kept growing the older and more comfortable I became, my first true crush was DJ. The first time I saw him was at the local grocery store, I had been shopping with a friend and happened to glance over at him standing by the magazine rack. I whispered to her how cute I thought his butt was. We giggled and hurried off. Some how news got back to my mom about this boy I fancied and she just happened to know his family, thankyou gossip.
That summer was filled with sprinklers, an old ice cream truck, colored sidewalk chalk, waterballoons, and rollerblades. This was also the summer I found out that the cute butt boy DJ lived right down the street from me. My evenings were spent turning fancy cartwheels on my trampoline and testing out handsprings. I knew he could see me from his window because everytime I glanced over I would see the curtains move. When sixth grade started it was already well known that we were crushing on each other, even if the extent of any conversation we ever had was hello.
He would walk home everyday afterschool, when we would pass in our four runner DJ and I would exchange a wave. In that era of my life those waves were something I would look forward to all day in school. I remember I wanted to jump out of my moms car and run up to him, walk with him, but I just stuck to the wave, happy to even be noticed by him.
Our first date was at the tiny Mesa theatre, we watched a movie we didn't understand. He sat one seat away from me, I will never be exactly sure why. His dad gave us a ride home in their blue minivan and his pomeranian dog Gus licked my knee the entire drive home before they dropped me off.
I found out DJ was going to be moving to Texas smack dab in the middle of seventh grade. He had a going away dance and birthday party. Our peers watched us slow dance through slow songs and fast songs alike. I was smiling in shock, I didn't want to break down in front of everyone, I didn't want to lose him. My parents picked me up from the dance and I cried silently all the way home. DJ called me to go to the movies one last time the night before he would be gone for good, this time when his brother dropped us off, he dropped us about a block from my house, so we could walk together. At the time we didnt understand what he was doing but now looking back I can see he thought we needed alone time before DJ left. We stopped at the gate infront of my house, I told him thankyou. I wanted to jump forward and kiss him so badly, and the look on his face showed the same thing, and yet I slowly shut the gate and turned around, I felt his eyes watching me leave him, one last wave.
DJ and I wrote letters for about a year and a half before they finally stopped. I met and fell in love with him all over again through those letters even at the young age of thirteen.
Middle school passed and the summer arrived, I spent it with Gena like I had every summer before. We reread the letters from DJ, talking about what highschool was going to be like, we had no idea what life was going to hand us next. All that was known was that no matter what was going to happen we would remain there for the other to count on even if everthing else was drifting away.
Freshman year was painful, my innocent blue eyes didn't see beauty when they peered into the mirror. The reflection revealed an unhidden akwardness, mouth full of braces, misunderstood hair, and skinny knobby knees. DJ moved back, the excitment I felt was unbearable at times but my nerves were the only thing that was apparent. I was ashamed of my akwardness. I didn't want him to see me, to notice me, and at the same time I did. To shy to talk to him, I sent him the wrong message, he felt rejected so moved on to my best friend at the time, Allie. My heart was broken, my mind confused, my eyes locked in a daze. I wrote one last letter to him on Valentines day that I intented to give him. It was to confess my love and explain to him that although I was so shy I loved him no less than I did before and was just hoping he'd wait. The note never left my denim pocket. Dj moved back to Texas.
I learned to reinvest in old friendships I had forgotten about the year following Dj's move. Jenn and I began spending time together and evolved into a crazy friendship. Jenn drove a 1985 grey Buick, we truly beleived we could paint the town in it. Together, we accomplished many firsts, first speeding tickets, first kisses, first times ditching class, first times getting caught ditching class, and first detentions for ditching class. Jenn and I togehter, held no fear, we would show up at A&W near closing time in fuzzy robes and slippers just to embarrass her younger brother who would usually be dining with friends. We crashed her car through a two foot mud puddle behind Mini Mart, obviously got stuck. Ate ice cream cones every day after school, two scoops for ninety-five cents. Tried playing golf together, failed. tried out for gymnastics, found a new circle of friends. Went to prom, escaped to the mountains, brought lawn chairs to class, copied eachothers homework on occasion and would lay out in the cool grass for hours barefooted and talking about life. She was there when I dated Randy 6'8". She was there when Joey stole my virginity and then broke my heart at seventeen. Jenn was there when I met Eric.
He was part of the group I found myself involved with senior year of highschool. We met through Davey, my library buddy. Davey and I each had a free hour during school so we became quick and close friends. He introduced me to his buddies, and his buddies eventually became my buddies. I hung out with those five guys every night for months. We stole street signs, anything to dull the pangs of small town boredom. We took guitars into public places and caused a ruckus. Rammstein and Nirvana blasted out of our car stereo as we cruised the main of our town for hours laughing and creating one inside joke after another. With them I felt like a whole seventeen year old. All of me was present when I was cracking up with them, even during their most vulgar conversations.
Eric was Davey's best friend, at one point Davey wanted to date me, I turned him down for numerous reasons. I feared it would jeapordize our friendship, I wasnt quite ready after going through the breakup with Joey.
Falling in love with Eric was very natural for me, our freindship quickly turned into a passion all of its own. Davey acted like he didn't mind, even though I know I hurt him. I do regret that often.
Eric and I stayed tangled in one anothers arms for hours at night, listening to the Eagles and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, dreaming and nurturing one another.
One time, we were sick of our curfew, our parents, and dealing with upcoming graduation. We drove for awhile on an old dirt road, coming to a haystack, I mentioned to him that when I was little I used to climb them. He pulled over instantly, got out of his toyota four runner and grabbed my hand. We climbed the haystack, danced on the top of the hay bales under the crisp febuary stars, the moon listening to our spitting competition off the bales, and to our laughter.
I really loved him, I'll always miss him, we had too many good times in such a short time. When he said goodbye to me, tears ran down my face, snot couldn't be avoided. He let me blow my nose on a spare shirt he had in his four runner. I should have washed that shirt.
I layed on the deck of my parents house in a sleeping bag , while rain poured over me, I could have died and not cared. Love can do that.
Time marched on I knew I had to leave him behind.
My sister, my thoughtful, concerned sister introduced me to Brian, she thought we would hit it off. Our romance was also quick, I fell in love with Brian shortly after our first date. We spent the hot summer months up on the mountain jaunting around in a tractor, bailing hay. Our conversations were colorful and enlightening. Brian was easy to love, and love him I did. I heard from DJ that summer, I couldn't believe it, it had been so long. He came and visited me one day while Brian was haying, there didn't seem to be much left of us. He told me he never forgot me and still loved me, but I was so caught up in Brian I hardly noticed what he was saying. DJ left for the navy and I continued my life with Brian. Brian and I made six months of memories before finding out we were expecting a child. I had just turned eighteen and Brian was a ripe seventeen.My mom did the pregnancy test, because she thought I had been acting diffrent. When she showed me the positive lines I said bullshit. I could not believe this was happening to me, I was planning to go to art school, maybe intern in another country. I know these things sound selfish but when you are barely an adult you have been made to beleive the sky is the limit for you, and my sky seemed to be crashing down. My mom understood, she had been there before, my sister wondered how I was going to survive, and my dad was very quiet for a few days. Gena told me she loved me and that I could call whenver I needed her. We kept it from Brians family for as long as we could, we knew his mom was already against the thought of us even being together, she had plans for her son, even if they weren't what he wanted.Brian and I cried together at night.
The first time I heard her heartbeat, seen her image on the ultrasound, I knew everything would be ok. My belly rounded, I became very happy picking out baby clothes and a bassinett. I wondered what my community thought of me, I tried not to notice.
At the time of my pregnancy a dear uncle of mine committed suicide, I wanted him to meet my child but instead I had to watch him dangle from a thickly knotted rope. I had to grasp my belly to keep from tipping over, I had to hold on to my dear child to keep from feeling the pain of his death.
I named her Brooklynne, when she arrived I had a smile on my face from shock. She was beautiful, she looked like her daddy. Brian's mom Candace came into the nursery and asked if Brooklynne was retarted. That hurt me so much, I still never understood why she resented me and Brooklynne so much, I'll always feel the pain from that comment.
Brian and I moved into a little house with our new family, he had just graduated highschool the month before. I planted geraniums, played with Brooklynne and nurtured my family. Me and Brian began fighting here and there, stress was beginning to take a toll on us. He would leave at five am and return late at night, it was beginnig to feel lonely even with so many loved ones around. I never thought anyone could understand how I felt. There was one afternoon, Brooklynne was sleeping on my lap, and I was watching MTv trying to stay current on my youth, with rain pounding the outside of my window. I looked down to see a tiny grey mouse watching television with us, it was a strange. moment for me and I felt entirely lonely.
Gena visited to ease the pain during fair time. We dressed Brooklynne up and hit the town to show her off. Gena asked to push the stroller, we smiled about all that we had seen eachother through. It wasn't long after this that I began chatting with DJ nightly. We were amazed at how much we had in common, he would also ease the lonliness I felt and help me with any issues I was having with Brian. I also helped him with any problems he found in his new marriage. I thought it very lucky to have such old friends still close to me.
Tragedy struck when brooklynne was four months old, we found out she was going to need open heart surgery. To survive this news I had to find the strength through faith and beleif. Brooklynne was scheduled to have her surgery on April 19th, 2005 in Omaha, NE ten hours away from home. Thankfully Gena was residing in Lincoln, NE attending college, she would only be an hour away and be able to be there through the whole thing.
Brian and I spent days watching the nurses draw blood while Brooklynne screamed, glaring up at us with her blue nine month old eyes, while we were asked to hold her down tighter. I was one month short of twenty, Brian a ripe 18. The nurses wheeled Brooklynne away in a stroller. I wondered if I would ever see her chest rise and fall again. I sat in the chocolate brown waiting room laughing along with regis and Kelly and our family, I was crying inside, dying inside.
We prayed it would be a success, it was.
We came up to ICU. Brooklynne was on a breathing machine, heart monitor, feeding tubes, her eyes plastered shut. I watched her chest rise and fall, and smiled in shock. The night after the doctor said Brooklynne was doing better than planned I noticed the stars again, I noticed how beautiful the city looked, how sweet my parents, now married twenty years looked holding hands peering down at my daughter. I noticed life again, once Brooklynne got hers back.
Brooklynne, now put back together, Brian and I began falling apart. Our daily stresses couldn't be controlled any longer. We fought every night. I would ask DJ what I should do, he would tell me to do whatever felt right, whatever made me happy. Living with Brian wasn't making me happy anymore. His mother was calling me up calling me horrible things, saying what a bad mother I was just because she was disgusted with her self and lack of involvement in our family, Brian began belittleing me as well. Brooklynne would fall asleep to the sound of us screaming. We just had nothing together anymore besides Brooklynne. It wasn't fair to her that she was the only reason we were together, I was afraid she would begin to see that we brought out the worst in eachother. I am not faulting him, nor I, we just couldn't make it grow. We were headed in different directions. Brian was committed to the oilfields, I was commited to my artwork. He thought my dreams were silly, I thought his, boring. We have slowly fallen apart while picking eachother apart as we go. We decided to end our three year investment of love for Brooklynne. So she won't have to suffer while living in a home of unhappiness and turmoil. Our choice disapointed family, and friends. I think they are just sad our era has ended. What era actually ever ends though? Passion never dies, nor does love. The loop always finds a way of coming back around. DJ and I have been reunited, I feel we have picked up right where we left off. The night at the gate was never the end like we thought, our conversations roll on now for hours, what I thought was impossible as a young girl I always find myself conquering. I will chase these crazy artistic dreams of mine, with my daughter in tow, memories beside me and first love not far behind. I find myself sitting here smiling from shock.