Friday, December 28, 2012

My Scarlet Letter

The battle between Chris and I had not gone according to plan. The only thing I had accomplished was turning her into a meaner prison guard. Not only had I proven her right by losing my virginity, I had gone a step further and shown her I was capable of doing dark deeds.

That summer was brutal working for Chris. The only highlight to each day was that I got to talk with Debbie, Bill's wife. Chris disliked her as much if not more than she disliked me. It was her pure dislike of the both of us that brought Debbie and I closer. We had a lot of fun laughing together. She was the only person on earth that could understand the cruelty of Chris completely. One of my favorite Debbie moments would have to be the day I was in charge of 3 gigantic burn piles. I wanted to add some highlights to my hair but doing so was OUT of the question! I had managed to purchase a bottle of this stuff called "Sun In". The gist was it worked on heat and sun. I had sprayed some into my hair that morning and then blew my hair dry. I didn't notice any difference. You could say I was not a believer in the whole works on heat thing . . . yet. I went out and met my father in the yard. He gave me a quick lesson regarding the fires he was setting and how I was to keep them from growing out of control. I worked those fires for hours. It was a hot day and being in the midst of fire piles made it VERY hot. I found myself mesmerized by fire. It seemed alive to me. The way it moved. The crazy way it jumped. I could even hear it breath. I'm sure a fire fighter would agree a fire is just shy of a living entity. It's scary amazing. Anyway, I finally had them down to ash piles and I was more than ready for some lunch. I went into the office and Debbie exclaimed, "What did you do to your hair?!" I was a little confused. I replied, "I sprayed some "Sun In" in it this morning but I didn't see a difference." She couldn't even talk anymore. She managed to say the word Mirror and pointed to the bathroom. I ran. She looked so shocked. I was a little frightened. As soon as I saw myself I screamed. My hair literally looked like a fire itself without any blues of course . . . perhaps you could say my hair resembled a lions mane! I never used "Sun In" again! Oh the scene at the dinner table that night was priceless!
I developed way too fast as a child. My nick name was weed because I would grow in spurts. By the time I made it to the 6th grade I had the body of a woman. Personally I have never been comfortable with my chest. It has seemed to be a curse. In the 6th grade I basically went to bed not needing a bra and by morning my mother had to take me shopping for one. It was so bad I couldn't go to school that day without one. As if that wouldn't be horrible enough had it happened to you, I was called down to the Principal's office that next day. It turns out adults aren't too into instant boobs either! I was told it was unacceptable to stuff one's bra. Let's just say it was one of my first want to ball up and die moments. My nickname was Dolly Parton and Chesty for the remaining year.

I did get a little chunkolicious my freshman year but that weight seemed to drop off over the summer. By the time school was getting ready to start I had slimmed down a lot. Chris was taking me to purchase my school clothes. My clothing budget was less than my brothers. He earned more because he worked out in the field with my father and always had overtime! Since I was obviously a slut who could not be trusted, Chris had decided my clothes should be very lose as not to outline my body. I had to purchase pants that were a size too big and wear them with a belt. It was so ridiculous that if I took my belt off some of my pants would fall right off my hips without even being unbuttoned! The irony was not lost on me.

I could have told her I wasn't interested in sex until I was blue in the face. She would Not have believed me. I was already labeled a liar so what I had to say held no value. I hated my wardrobe and I was not thrilled with my life. Around the first month of school being back in session, I made a failed attempt to end my life. All I ended up doing was sleeping off my abundance of swallowed pills.


I had a pretty tough schedule my sophomore year. All college prep classes. No study hall allowed. Chris was not into idle time at all! She had signed me up for speech class. I was the only sophomore in a class of juniors and seniors. I was terrified. The mere thought of standing in front of these strangers and giving a speech had me trembling so bad I can't even explain it. I did not concur that phobia until 10 years later! Anyway, I decided to take myself out of the class. I forged my father's signature on the withdraw fail form. When my report card came I was in more trouble than I care to go into. The good news is the school had to take the withdraw failure off my record and that move was enforced by Chris. The school never stood a chance with her arguing against them. My grade point average was unharmed. Yippee.

Looking back I realize I was not talking to God daily anymore. I knew he was real. That I could not deny. I just no longer believed he was cheering for "Team Wendy". That year I decided I must have missed something with this whole sex thing. There had to be a reason Chris was so convinced I was into it. I decided the next chance I had to explore this painful activity, I would. As it happened I had a few band friends that Chris approved of. One night we all went out. We ended up at a house in Carmel and this is so awful to say because I don't even remember my "boyfriends" name but he was there. Everyone went into separate rooms and I was in a room with this boy. He had a condom so no worries about babies. I was no more thrilled with the result than I was when I had performed the deed with Danny Joe. Adults, I decided, were crazy. Who in their right mind actually enjoyed this?! The one good thing that had come out of my giving myself to this guy was I received an invite to the Carmel prom. Of course Chris would not let me attend that! Proms produce babies you know! She informed me I would have time to go to a prom my Junior and Senior year. I was much too young to go to one my Sophomore year. Needless to say, my guy was forced to pick another girl to take to the prom and shock of all shocks I never heard from him again. I would like to say I was sad over that but honestly I was not. I never had feelings for him. Just curiosity over sex.

Chris and I had battled numerous times over the year. Once over my opinion of a sitcom. Another time over me loaning a hair dryer to Tami in the dead of winter. We had two of them. The one I loaned her shut off after 10 minutes and you had to wait for it to cool down before it would turn back on. Tami had been drying her hair in front of a wood stove so she really needed a hair dryer. She had that hair dryer for 3 weeks when Chris realized it was gone. I was grounded for my deed. I decided Chris was the most selfish person I'd ever met in my life. One day as summer was fast approaching I asked, "Would you allow me to get a job working somewhere else? I really don't like working for you." By the Grace of God, she conceded. Westfield only had the Dairy Queen back then. I imagine she thought no one would hire me. Unfortunately for her, I was hired! My first real job. She could no longer be in control of my paycheck. Up until my job at Dairy Queen I had never even seen my paychecks!

The craziest thing Chris ever did to me was attempt to get me fired. I showed up for work that evening and my manager Sheila pulled me to the side and informed me that my mother had come in earlier and requested that I be fired for my own good. I was dumbfounded. I didn't even know my mom knew where I was working and why would she want me fired? My head was spinning. I looked at Shelia and said, "My mom, long brown hair?" and I placed my hand at my waist line. Shelia looked completely confused and said, "No, shoulder length and auburn." I was floored. I gasped, "That's not my mom! That's my step-mother!" Shelia said, "Well, I told her we had no reason to fire you. You're the best worker we have." She informed me that Chris was pretty hot when she left.

The next day I called my mom and told her what was going on and begged to come live with her for the summer. I don't know why she caved but she did. Chris was not happy but she did not stop me. I don't think she wanted my dad to know the lengths she had gone to in an attempt to run / ruin my life. I had my mom's car to drive. We had basically the same hours. I would drop her off at work do my shift and go back and wait for her to get off of work and then we'd go home. I was 16 now and decided that perhaps I should look up Danny Joe. I did not want to sleep with a bunch of men. It was bad enough that I had already slept with two of them. So much for saving myself and going through life with only one person. I figured if I wanted to keep that number from growing it would be in my best interest to track down Danny. It took me a couple of hours to find that house again. When I did, it was Danny Joe's sister Tracie that I found. She explained that Danny Joe lived with their mom. She hadn't seen him for a few months but would take me over to her mom's apartment. My heart was pounding so hard on the way over there. I hadn't seen Danny Joe since the day I'd forced him to sleep with me. When we got there Danny wasn't there yet. Tracie introduced me to her mom and the front door opened. In came Danny Joe and another boy who turned out to be one of his step-brothers. Danny Joe was smoking a cigarette. I couldn't believe my eyes. Seeing me standing there, I'm not sure he believed his. He made some snide comment as he walked by me. Something like, "Have you come back around for a boyfriend? That's not how things work. I'm not up for grabs I guess you can have my brother." I told him, "I don't need your help with finding a boyfriend Danny Joe. I'm quite capable of doing that on my own." He went on by and plopped down on the couch. I went into the kitchen with Tracie and her mom. She was fixing us lemonade. I stood at the end of the table glaring at Danny Joe. His mom asked how we knew each other. I said, "We met at a Sunday School class four years ago." His mom seemed surprised. She then informed Tracie that Danny Joe was going to be a dad. I felt the room spin. I don't know how I managed to stay standing. Danny and his brother headed back out after that. I told Tracie I needed to be going soon myself. I explained I had to work a shift that night and I needed to get ready for work. Tracie decided she wanted to hang out with her mom. She walked me out to my car and apologized for her brother. She asked me not to be a stranger. I don't even remember what I said. All I remember was I felt like I had been separated from my body. There was no way I could hang around and watch Danny Joe become a father. That was the last time I ever laid eyes on Danny Joe. It wasn't the last time I thought about him though.

As I drove off I looked up to the heavens and yelled. "Really? Really?" I was so infuriated at the way my life was turning out. I continued on my rant to God. "Danny Joe is having a baby? It's not with me! What about this grand plan you had for me? Hugh? Now I have to find someone else? Do you take great joy in this?"

Again I warn you. Anger is not a wise emotion. It clouds your mind and allows you to do things you would not do under normal circumstances. Anger can turn you into someone you never were. When you feel this emotion taking the wheel in your life, I encourage you to get on your knees and pray.

I must get ready for the day ahead. I can't believe it is already Friday. Soon I will be kicked back enjoying the weekend with my babies. I love the laughter they have filled my life with. Babies are blessings . . . took me a while to fully appreciate that to the fullest! May you have a blessed day my friends.

Wendy, Mom of Many



 
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