I have been doing a lot of soul searching lately, not as if this is a new thing, this is something I do frequently. I am truly a lost soul. I am in a crossroads in my life, and like many I have hit before I don’t know which way to go. Most of the time I jump in head first and just travel the path it leads me. This time in life I can’t bring myself to chase either way. I sit here and am along for the ride waiting for the path to choose me. The people that are left in the balance are not satisfied that this is the course of action I have chose. So it leaves me contemplating on how it is I have come to this rock hard spot in life, and what life altering event brought me here.
I look backwards, because if you follow history it has a tendency to repeat itself and sometimes leads to an educated decision. The more and more I can not bring myself to find the answer I need, the farther and farther I go back. This is what brought me to the memories that have always tormented me and maybe the reason I hit so many crossroads in life.
Anyone who truly knows me knows I have not lived the most gracious life. Growing up my father was a Rolling Stone and my mother was along for the ride. I have stories clear back to before I was born. My journey into this world began with parents in jail for distribution of marijuana. During which my mother gets sick and upon examination she finds out she is pregnant with a child. Not her first but due to primitive medical testing the first she truly knew about before it was to late. That’s where I come in. the oldest of four, two others with my father, and one with my stepfather. He is a whole other story on its own.
Growing up in life wasn’t all that bad until my parents divorced, then the roller coaster ride truly began. I seriously have completely blocked out the second grade. I can remember several things from Kindergarten but could not tell you who my second grade teacher was. I can remember 3rd grade just as well as I do the first but second has been removed completely from my memory.
My father was an unskilled labor so he had to travel for work. My mom would follow at times but it never seemed to do any good. They always ended up back where they began, with my dad face down in the dirt. This story my father was in California, being mainly oilfield and the great bust it brought us in the 80’s, he ended up trying his luck drilling Geo Thermal wells near the Mexico border. He took everything he owned and he headed to California, where he slept in the brush with rats until he could land on his feet. His first payday, having lived on watermelon he picked from the patch he headed to town to get something decent to eat, only to have everything stolen while he was gone. One thing about my father he always hit bottom and found a way to work his way back up.
He missed us kids, I remember talking to him on the phone and listening to him cry as he ran low on change. I know he was struggling and didn’t have much, not sure if its 100% his fault or if he just had that bad luck. I do know he has always loved my brother and sister and me with everything he had. Even though his actions sometimes questioned it we all new it, and just hoped he would figure it out someday. He eventually did later in life, when he decided to grow up.
Missing us, he had convinced my mother to spend Christmas with him in sunny California. First time any of us had even left the state. We traded in our winter coats for shorts and sandals. All of us kids were so excited. This was our first and only vacation any of us had as children. We moved a lot and have seen a lot of things but we never took off to have fun. It was amazing, meeting new people, seeing things that I had only seen on TV. I remember his apartment building having a pool, and though there was no water in it, it was the coolest thing in the world. My father even took us to Mexico and spent the day walking around eating different Mexican cuisine. Everything was so amazing and exciting, so much better then home. I could of stayed there forever. Often think of it when I need a happy place to go. Everything isn’t always as glittery as it seems, which now I come to the part that makes my stomach turn and the true reason I decided to sit and write.
My mother, I love her to pieces but she has always been quite gullible in life. She had big dreams for us kids and still does to this day. She always told me I could be anything I wanted to be I just have to work for it. She would tell me how smart I was and that I truly have a gift of a golden heart. Sometimes I think its just the fact I hate people being sad cause I know how sadness truly feels. either way she believed in us kids and she still does. I love her for that. It truly made me believe in myself at times in life I needed it the most.
Our trip, being excited children with big hopes and dreams, we all thought this was our time. The time our parents decided to get back together and that we would be a true family again. Though my mom was quick to put that out of our heads though, we still wished.
She had a boyfriend. A wealthy man, he sold tools out of a Snap-On tool van. She rant and raved about him, and the highlight of our trip was on our way she was going to stop and surprise him. He didn’t live in the same town as we did, but he wasn’t real far away either. Just over the mountain pass about 3 hours into our trip and we would be there. Not bad for getting a late start.
My mom always like me liked to make others smile. She loved to be a big surprise, She worked that day so we had a late start. She was packed and ready and excited like a school girl, we heard 3 hours of how amazing this man was. He lived in this awesome house where we could all have our own room. She had plans with him whether he knew it or not. She was truly falling for this guy.
When we arrived it was dark, I remember the street lights as we pulled in. He lived in to what appeared to me the nicest neighbor hood I had ever known anyone to live in. As we pull up in my mom’s little mini station wagon(I still can’t remember what kind of car it was) out front of this gorgeous house was a Snap On van just as my mother described. I have to admit I was really getting excited. This is something of fairytale to a broke trailer park kid. But as everything dreams are made to be broken, it didn’t last long. My mother parked in front of the van which was parked on the street the wrong way, she told us to stay in the car as she went and surprised him. She planned on us staying there that night.
When she knocked on the door, I could see a man come out. He looked surprised alright, but not in a good way. This part gets a little blurry in my memory but I could see them arguing and couldn’t hear what was said. If my memory serves me correctly another women came to the door real briefly and retreated back inside. I remember my heart breaking for my mom, just as it still does to this day, when she returned to the car crying and explaining to me it was a big mistake. Thank god my brother and sister had slept through it, I would hate to see their hearts also break. It’s not like I knew the guy, had a feeling I would never cross his path again, hopefully neither would my mothers.
We drove straight through that night. I stayed awake as long as a young boy could. I tried to comfort her. I didn’t know what to say, how could a 10 year old boy even begin to understand what my mother felt in her heart. I just new it hurt, and the only words I could tell her was “its okay mom, I love you!” but i have a feeling at that time it wasn’t enough.
I woke up around midnight from a door closing, in Salt Lake. My mother was lost and was trying to get directions with no such luck. At least I knew how to read a map and could finally direct her back on our path. I love my mom, with every beat of my heart, sometimes I think she trusts too much, and wants to see the good side in people. I called her gullible earlier and that truly isn’t fair. I think she has a faith in people that I will never ever understand. I myself never could truly trust anyone. I think if I ever had that faith it washed away in tears a long time ago. Long enough that I can’t remember.