Tales of Growing up

There was once a little girl of 3 years. She lived with her family in a small house in a tiny neighborhood. Aside from the girl, the family consisted of a mother, father, a teenage boy, and 2 dogs. The neighborhood was poor, but peaceful, and the trees and flowers were blooming beautifully as springtime arrived.

All was seemingly well until one day, Father ran into the house to announce a terrible storm headed towards the neighborhood. The warning gave inadequate time to prepare as a massive wind gust shoved Father into the house from the doorway. The sky darkened and the air smelled of rain.

Mother grabbed the girl and Brother and ran towards the closet at the center of the house. Father fought against the wind to pull the front door shut as the dogs ran inside. Finally he was successful and took his place in the closet with his family.

The small house vibrated. The family held hands and kept their heads down and eyes closed. It was pitch black in the closet. The storm raged around them – they heard crashes, screams, and powerful cracks of boisterous thunder.

The ferocity of the storm continued through the night. The family trembled together in the tightly packed closet.

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——

An eerie silence slowly draped the atmosphere of the closet . The girl opened her eyes and found herself sitting alone. She stood and stepped out into the house.

The sun was beaming through the windows. The two dogs ran passed her, wrestling over a strip of rope. Brother sat silently at the dining room table, eating a bowl of cereal. Father was out. Father was always out. Mother was in her bed, crying.

Whether thunder and funnels of fire and fury, or a home full of cracks and tears, inside the house or from the clouds – a storm is a storm. That’s the day the girl’s eyes opened and her heart was broken.

It Very Much Still Breaks My Heart

Back when she was young and hopeful, she let it inside and it ate her alive. With a willing host it can start its own life. Then the parasite punctures the host and watches it die. Slowly.

The virus overtakes the body and becomes the new person. It’s a rebirth combined with death and others will never know of the revelation. One day, it’s sand. The next, it’s snow. Warmth is replaced with flesh killing cold.

Many said yesterday was cursed. Numbers and celestial objects determine our value and worth. Cross your fingers and watch your step, just around the corner awaits a potential threat.

Hot or chilly, no one truly knows when the world will burn and follow the path of the dying star. The cat chases a moth in the night. He’s as black as moonless midnight. The prisoner in the basement dreams of grass and sunlight, but he’s too far gone. He can never leave the horrible hell he slid himself into. Crickets chirp outside the windows. They are invisible. Do they even exist? Or is the noise only in our haunted heads?

None of us has seen 10 p.m. since before summer’s bitter end. We’re all in need of extra freedom and friends. I did something wrong, I committed a sin. My own choice, it was. My personal destruction. I don’t regret it, and neither do you. Both of us lied and stretched the truth. So here we go, forever apart. Where did our friendship end and our battles restart? It very much still breaks my heart.

A Story of Stormy Lives

There’s a problem child at school who gives her hell everyday. She cares about the kid but he won’t do his work and likes to show off his fluency in disrespect. If she calls the mom, the step daddy takes a belt to the kid’s body – over and over. Broken bones won’t fix behavior and broken homes are what’s in style.

She drives home to enter the world of a different broken home – her own. Her daddy never beat her with a belt but his bottle became his idol when she was just an infant. Several times she’d wished he’d just beat her.

Mother is out buying ingredients to make soup because the temperature is predicted to drop below freezing after the upcoming storm. Father is where he usually is in his spare time. He calls her into the living room to come see him. He’s on the couch, slightly intoxicated.

She asks, “What?” impatiently. She’s had a long week with rowdy kids and wants to lay in bed to dream of better days.

He pauses and forces out the words, “I spent the night in jail.” He tries to fight back tears but his effort is fruitless. “DWI.”

The man looks broken, but she has no pity, only disgust. Pity once lived in her heart, but it died long ago. It was a well gone dry. All that’s left now is contempt and disdain.

She says nothing. Through his tears he says, “You can shoot me. I wish someone would.” She leaves.

It’s staring to thunder outside with an occasional slash of lightning. She prepares to bring her dogs inside the house. The house will be a muddy mess in the morning, but the dogs will live. That’s all that matters.

Mother gets home and talks to her about the legal situation. Mother spent $2000 on bail money and is about to blow her inheritance on a lawyer. The money was literally months away from being used as a down payment to begin building a new home – a nicer home, one they had always dreamed of. Now it’s money for a court date.

“Part of me wishes he had just crashed and died,” says mother. Mother feels terrible saying those words, but Girl feels the same. Girl has wished death upon Father for fifteen years.

The storm outside grows.

Girl tries to work on her homework. The storm is slowing the satellite connection. She’s patient, but tired. The saddest part of struggles is when she stops caring anymore. She has lost interest in the fight and removes herself, emotionally, from the war.

Let the boy drop out of school, let the father drown in drunkenness, and let this massive storm rip away everything she’s ever known. She’s gone. Is it sad or is it…illuminating?

Yes, the storm will always pass. In the end, it leaves a trail of ice in its wake.

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