Not sure, not sure… I thought I did well, but the arrow through my middle is still there. That feeling is either grief or heartburn, which can really be used interchangeably. What is grief if not a burning of the heart? But, I digress. I think I got through today fairly well, I was not bowled over with sadness, nor images of her death as I have been in years past. Rather, I decided to celebrate her life today, to remember only good and wonderful things, and I was not obsessed. It was very freeing, actually.
Dad , however, was a real “not -very-nice-person” today, and rather than dealing with him in a loving and gentle manner- I was a real smart-butt. saying things like, “I guess you don’t know where the trashbags are anymore, huh Pops?”. Really low stuff. I learn about not taking away the ill person’s dignity and pride, and then I turn around ten minutes later and do exactly that! I seemed to really lay it on thick today, I sure hope Dad does not remember what a cruel daughter he has.
As a child, growing up I played the clown, bee-bopping through life trying to always keep the peace in the home that I so desperately longed for. If everyone was looking at me, they would forget to hate each other! So, I danced the co-dependent’s dance, completely burying whoever I really was.
I remember that girl being really smart- the teacher’s gave her special tests, and had her sit up in the front of the class, to be a hated example held up in all the other kid’s faces. I still remember the names they called that girl: Brain, Nerd, Bookworm, Four-Eyes…The Education board even had a “special category” for studants like myself, and they touted it to the parents: “You are the parent of a child who qualifies for the “Advanced Education Program” as an “exceptional student”! Oh boy, somebody help me contain my excitement. Now the other kids had more reasons to hate me.
My mother took me up to the school on a Saturday, and I saw all the other “exceptional” kids. All the wierdos and bookworms and losers gathered in one place, and here I was: one of “them”. I had to find a way out of this. About that time the Professors showed up and we were escorted into the “testing area” away from our nervous parents, who all waited with bated breath to hear if their kid was going to the Moon, or to work for the CIA.
The tests seemed stupid. A bunch of hypothetical questions about how I would solve certain problems, like, if I had a pair of shoes in a locked closet in Tennessee, how would I know what size box to put my red felt hat into in Mexico, if it were Sunday and the federal tax was 2.9%. Yeah, those kinds of questions.
I muddled through somehow, and got to have a milkshake at the “Big Boy” on the way home. All in all, a day well lived. Weeks went by, and finally a letter: I had passed and would soon be admitted to these wonderful classes. I must admit, I was excited! The reality, however, was about as interesting as unsalted air-popped popcorn. It had all been a bunch of hot air..(get it? hot air? air-popped popcorn? ha, I am SO witty!!!)
Anyway, the only real difference I noticed was I had 2 art classes a day, and advanced Engish, where I could read with the seniors. It was pretty cool, but the year passed and I found pot. Pot made my life bearable, especially when Mom and Dad totally lost interest in me. I remember bringing my report card home with all A’s but one, and they barely glanced at it. So I quit trying too. Everybody liked me better stoned, i was a much better clown.
One day I tell you more about how the real Kiko dissapeared. In the mean time, be kind to a nerdy kid, he just wants to be like all the others. Ordinary and loved.
But for now, I am content. I have a Mom and Dad who did the best they knew how, and they worked so hard all their lives to care for us, They were not perfect, and feelings were hurt- but guess what- I hurt the people I love too. We don’t do it on purpose, I don’t think. We just muddle through:). Hug you parents today!!!