Learning To Love You More




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

Ladia Lovejoy
Seattle, Washington
Email Ladia



My mother was a cheerleader; my father was golf pro. They got married when they were 18 and a half and had my sister when they turned 19. Love isn't the only reason people get married.
I was born on my mother's birthday (Halloween) 1979 at exactly the opposite time as her: 9.54pm. I can't really verify that this is the truth, but I like to think it explains a lot about our relationship and the bonds that bring us together and keep us apart. I was born in Pullman Washington (which was easy to change to Poland to seem more exotic as a child. Until of coarse I realized the implications this held to middle school children: What do you call a Polock with...) I never actually lived there. I think My parents were attending Moscow University or something. I'm not really sure. We moved around allot and I think the early eighties were really hard on my parents. My dad came from a pretty wealthy family (You can google my last name and find Lamanna High, smack dab in North Central Idaho.) My mom on the other hand came from a poor family of loggers and bar owners that neglected their 8 (or something) children. My mother had some terrible past she doesn't speak of and who knows exactly what happened. Whatever it was keeps her away from the city. At any rate, when I was three my parents divorced. I remember my sister and I after the divorce. We both started crying and I was screaming and suddenly realized I didn't even know what the hell a divorce was.
My sister and me must have driven my mother crazy. We lived on Salisbury Street in Chehalis at the time (that terrible town of nothing that kept pulling us back. The kind of town, much like all the rest I grew up in, where peoples wild "pet" dogs snarled at the taught end of there makeshift leashes, paws covered in their own shit, and kids knew how to make their own lunch and tuck themselves in at the age of five.) I think My mom was working nights at the Cannery, a large, mysterious, white building that seemed SO far away, and not nearly as glamorous as my beautiful young mother. My sister and I got us kicked out of the green house at Salisbury Street by steeling all the land ladies sea shells from around the world and selling them for ten cents a styrafome cup in our front lawn. I traded one for a snake. We also cut down all her prized roses and took them around the neighborhood to give to people door to door. I had a stutter and a lisp and mixed up my R's, W's, and L's so I naturally wasn't popular in the first grade. I got taken to the principal once because I wouldn't believe my teacher that February was a month. I still find it the dullest of all. I went through three years of speech therapy but my reputation was trashed. After Salisbury we moved so often that I can't keep track in my head. I was Linus in the school play. I think that was 3rd grade. Maybe fourth. I chased girls a lot and called them my Titty-bears. During the winter we had to go with my mother to find wood pieces, which usually involved driving out to secluded mills to find small scraps. I didn't feel poor, but I think we were. I'm not sure when my dad re-married but she was a complete bitch and I hated her. She "lost her temper" every time we came to visit, giving us bloody noses and various bodily scars. I'm sure looking back, she was closer to my age than my dads and just didn't know how to handle bitchy little kids. This really brought my sister and I together but alienated my father. At least from me. Everyday I stayed with him I liked him less and less. One day I went with my mother to her friend's house. He was a gigantic, intimidating man. He towered above me and I remember it was his birthday. There was a balloon and nacho's from Seven Eleven and he was in a faux baseball jersey. I hid behind my mom and thought about how much I loved that fake cheese they use, this was when Seven Eleven was HUGE and had that deal with Nerds where they came in one gigantic plastic nerd. I wish I still had one of those.
Soon after he came over for Christmas and then they started living together. They worked together at the Cannery. I remember the smell, a cooked carrots, green pea's mixed with frozen corn. It was disgusting, like dumpsters.
They got the Idea to move back to Priest River Idaho (my mom's home town.) when we were visiting our grandma one year. It was the worst Idea ever. I hated it there. Everyone hated ME there. I was a sissy, mama's boy with the remnants of a lisp. I only had three friends there and one of them had to move when her parents got caught growing pot in their basements. My sister didn't like hanging out with me anymore and I loved her so much I always tried so hard to impress her. I ended up having to invent all these friends. For some reason all their names started with J; Jake, Jamie, Julie, Jarred, Jason, Justin, Jessica, but mostly my girlfriend Amy. She was really pretty. Amy Townsend. Of coarse she didn't exist but we had a really tumultuous relationship where I had to save her from bad orphanages and hurricanes and what not. I was an alter boy then too. I used to be really bad at it. I'd fart and wear to different colored shoes because I was so tired when I got dressed. And mass was SO trying. I would dose off and forget to ring the chimes. I always imagined Jesus as a comic book character. Like any moment he was going to come alive and peel his arms off the ceramic cross, dive down and together we would fly away and get rich doing song and dance and buy my mom a house. I hated how hard she worked because we never got to see each other. In Priest River we had a wild dog that I had poop scoop after, a crazy neighbor who later got busted for some sort of illegal substance (who poisoned the wild dog) and the last strands of a family trying hard to stay together. My sister got a crazy boyfriend, some type of skinhead wannabe (it was just sixth grade) Who, years later, took her on some talk show trying to get her back after he got out of jail for god knows what. She started doing drugs and bla bla bla. She listened to "devil music" like Enigma and told my mom to go to hell. My step dad (they never officially married until later.) shattered his knee in a mill accident and slept with some hussy. I still hated it because I was such a pussy. Finally our family fell apart. I skipped so many days of school that I almost got held back, that ended when I got caught by the police skipping with some kid I was trying to impress. We stole a carton of cigarettes and made a fort and then when we tried going to my house for snacks we were ambushed by my grandmother's wild eyes and a few men in uniform. My mom and step dad got back together (at which point, in my joy I accidentally broke my sisters nose the first time.) They had moved to Priest River in hopes of making more money for their family and now there was nothing left of it. My sister moved out to live with my dad in Wenatchee. I was the favorite and now I was steeling and skipping school and having depression in third grade. My grandfather died. So we moved back to Chehalis. I still did poorly in school I didn't see my sister for years. My dad forgot my birthday. My sister decided she hated me. My mother grew more and more distant. I tried running away. I would read those campfire books about surviving in the wilderness and dreamed of never seeing anyone again. We moved to Billings Montana, the biggest city I had ever lived in. On the way moving there we stopped in Mazulla to stay with my step dads uncle in his Taxidermy hotel. He had every type of animal you could imagine stuffed and thrown around the room. I left one night and walked around in the fog. I was about to enter sixth grade. I felt so mature. I was finally going to do it. I was going to work hard, be popular and start my singing career, which of coarse would lead me to acting. In Montana I fell deeper into myself. There were such rich popular people I could never compare to. I didn't have any friends in Montana, but I wrote to my friend in Chehalis everyday. Sometimes twice. At one point I got invited to a dance in this girls garage. I was SO excited because she was the popular girl of my school and there would be no parents. That's how I discovered masturbation. Just thinking of the party got me so excited and I would tell this kid I knew about how much I liked it and we would lie there and get hard ons. There is nothing to compare to the exhilaration and pain of your first hard it. It last for hours and you really aren't sure what to do about it. The tightness and the feeling in your stomach and your throbbing head and your chest and what if it never goes down! What if it's stuck, or it gets too full and explodes or what if blood just starts coming out? But we would lay there on our stomachs kind of imbareced and kind of hopeful and turned on. So sixth grade was my sexual explosion year. I would make out with any girl who would give me the time and you would be surprised even what the geek of the school could get! I even one time under the damp heated cover of the kid's bed, rubbed mine against his. It was after his older brother showed us porn of some blond chick taking it up the ass on a dryer and then showed us his dick. It was nothing special really. Even though he was two grades ahead of me he had way less hair. So Montana was the definitive beginning of my sexual self and two other important things. In an attempt to get closer to my mother (after an attempt to run away with the kid who I rubbed against. We even slept in the back of a church for a night.) I decided to start going to church. It was weird becoming Christian. I went from the strict, traditional catholic churches to the hands in the air, speaking in tongues, call everyone sister or brother kind of church. And I loved it. How everyone seemed so close and they could cry together about all the horrible things there secular lives had brought them too, and hope that maybe one day, when the right priest lays his hands on them, that wall eye, or bad knee or maybe that feeling that they would never amount to anything in anyone's life would be lifted from there tired body and they would finally be able to feel comfortable in their skin. I found a nice Christian girlfriend and pretended I understood what love was and had deep conversations with her about the future of our souls. I wanted to be writer. I wrote dramatic, adventure packed stories about people who didn't fit in, who burned in fires and killed themselves. About people who got kidnapped and shot and about all the things I felt I could ACTUALY understand even though I had never been through them. I felt so mature and kept a journal of my journey through life. And then we moved again. I'm not sure why this time. BACK to Chehalis. Back to more people who hated me. Only this time I lived in Napavine. Where I met my hippy friend that opened me up to who I was. She was older than me; a junior. I met her in drama, along with my new girlfriend. The hippy was of coarse a vegetarian; she loved that guy from the Rolling Stones. She read books about homosexuals and had sex with foxy boys. She opened me up to real spirituality and the heartbreak of life. We cried over Harold and Maude and drove around listening to Cat Stevens and The Wall. It was all really great. She would have threesomes with the Russian foreign exchange students and before shows we would cringe in ecstasy over our anxiety (she was really into channeling your feeling what ever you wanted them to be, mostly sexual stuff. You're angry? Make it lust! You're sad? Turn it into mourning over love. That sort of thing.) We loved each other we would write stories and poems and make fun of my girlfriend, a lanky, elfin girl. I felt like I really understood life, and I started moving away from religion after converting my parents. Once a profit came to our church and said I was going to be a messenger of god, that I was going to change thousands of peoples lives and he told me all of this stuff from my past that made me cry and sit up at night feeling like maybe one day I could be special. I could change someone's life. And then we moved again. I think it was to get me closer to my estranged father and my sister who hated me. We'd branched off and lived separate lives. The ties of neglect that once held us together had become separate strings. I hated Wenatchee. I made friends right away because I was the class clown, but again, as with everywhere I went, I was the fag. I got beat up and pushed around and I had given up meat (except fish) and started obsessively reading Khalil Gibran and Sidartha and Trying Hard to Hear You. But for the first time I was REALLY popular. I had good friends. Me and my sister got closer. I had a girlfriend that I really liked a lot. She was shy and beautiful and intelligent. I also decided I was a bisexual. I worked at a library and would bring hundreds of books home. I moved out of my mother's house because she was going through the raging bitch stages. I lived with my dad who I'm sure never understood me. He was captain of his football team, he was a golf pro, I was a poet and emotional and (probably obviously) struggling with my sexuality. My girlfriend was the best though. We had an open relationship for people of the same sex because we wanted to let each other experience life. So I met my first boyfriend. We pretended to be in love with each other but I think it was just really nice to have someone to experiment with. SO on a rainy, foggy day I moved to Seattle to live with him. I had been through running start so I had some college. I got a job at a salon and started bleaching my hair and grew a goatee and mustache. I started plucking my eyebrows and buying expensive clothes. Things started getting way too un-cool for me and I had a fake ID. I would go drinking with everyone and flirt with everyone because apparently a 17 year old with bleached hair and a goatee could appeal to all (the child loving older men and the older men loving children) I felt metropolitan and mature. I started smoking weed and drinking. Then after a year of this the pretend love and I broke up. I moved back to Wenatchee in a whirlwind of depression and superior feelings to everyone around me. After a few months of this I got a call from my friend from the salon. "You have to meet this guy ---- he's the best!" so in September I took a trip back and met him. He was amazing. I came back again for my birthday and we decided I should move back. I tried to move in with an old friend of mine, but he decided he was too in love with me. So I ended up being forced to move in with my new boyfriend and his friend. I fell in love with him. I had sex for the first time. REAL sex with a boy I mean. It was great and amazing and he was foxy and looked like Colin Ferrall. I got a job at a spa and started buying designer clothes (Helmut Lang, Vivian Westwood, Final Home.) I started binge drinking. And then it happened. One night at a underground after hours club, I'd gone through numerous fakes by this point) I fallowed my first love through this door under the stares of the club to a rusty table with one 60 watt bulb floating above it and my first line of coke. I was shaking with anxiety and fear and disgust and the second I did it flew from the room to the nearest Port-O-Potty to cry. As I locked the door behind me I was met with the rush of something. A feeling almost like falling or just before puking. I stayed with the guy through a lot of things. Once he passed out and got his shoes and glasses stolen. I still laugh about that. What finally severed my love for him was the night I had this dream that we lived in a world completely made of houses. There was no ground just buildings that forever connected. I was searching for him; there was something I had to tell him. I couldn't find him anywhere and when I did he was sitting in one of the buildings high and naked and laughing at me. I started crying in my dream and he got up on the bed because he wanted to have sex and when he bent over I could see that he was hollow. That inside of him was nothing. That day I tried E for the first time and had the first of a long series of Anxiety attacks. I'm sure the two are intertwined but I like think for the sake of a good story they aren't. We took the E and lied down to rub tiger balm all over each other. The motion and the feeling and the attention put me into a daze I closed my eyes and felt myself sink through my bedroom floor and into the downstairs neighbors house. I was levitated just at head level and they sat staring at me on their couch. Their mouths were moving but it was silent. And then I was shot from the room like a slingshot. I suddenly realized I was screaming, the guy I loved tried to cover my mouth and wake me and when I did I threw myself from the bed. My heart was racing and the room seemed to be twisting and dividing and bubbling. The guy passed out and I continued to walk back and forth from the living room to the bathroom for four hours. About three months later I began having the sensation constantly. It would be so intense I would black out. I had no Idea what it was. This racing heart and adrenaline and the feeling that nothing makes sense. Like the world is suddenly an odd phenomenon that you only now realized you can't understand. I went to the emergency room constantly not knowing what it was and finally a doctor said: "have you ever been tested for AIDS?" I knew it then. I was dead. It was in the way homeless people started looking at me (they knew I was just as desperate) I asked if He could have exposed me to something high risk of coarse he said he could have. I found out all about dirty things he was doing. I left him then I moved in with my friend and we later moved to New York together. That was lame and I got sick and moved down to Phoenix to get back on feet. And now, Seattle. I'm in love again. Still nothing makes sense. My hands are throbbing. I realized there is so much more to this story (the other two times I broke my sisters nose. My OTHER sister. The time I almost died in my sleep. The guy who used to crawl around ripping up Styrofoam making sounds like a monkey. The time I gave crabs to the guy I'm in love with because my roommates let this homeless guy use my towel...) I also realize I put a lot more effort into the beginning. BUT ALAS, My hands hate me. And I'm done.