Writing is a wonderful form of therapy! It transfers thoughts from the brain to the fingers on the keyboard and it’s personal. I like that! When I write, I don’t consider who may read it or what they could interpret from it. It’s MY thoughts and MY emotions that end up as words on a page.
Sometimes, I laugh as I write and sometimes I cry. Sometimes, it’s just an expression of my day. Often it’s because I don’t have anyone in my home to talk with. I carry on conversations on a virtual page because the quietness seems very loud. I’m not a sad person. I consider myself to be pretty balanced emotionally. I have friends that I could talk with about life, but on a page my thoughts thread together without the give and take of a conversation.
Most of the time, I’m in bed late at night as I let my words flow. I write as I think. Not long complicated vocabulary, just ordinary words. I feel as I write. Memories filled with happiness or regrets. Things that can’t be taken back or added to. I reflect on the future and it’s filled with longings because my time on earth seems to be flying by.
I’m writing about my life. Read it or not, laugh or not, cry or not. It’s not for you unless you just want to share a part of my life. It’s my reflection because when John died, I was left alone with our history. I’ll share that part of my life and the part that went on without him. My life didn’t end when he died, but it did change drastically. Every season that a person goes through changes them. I’m mapping my seasons.
I often think of my life beginning at seventeen. Not that I knew it at the time, but looking backwards with the wisdom of age, I know that’s when my future stood before me. The person that would help transform me into the woman I would become stepped into my life with a simple request. “Run down the stairs singing the school song.” He was a boy on the verge of manhood with a silly grin on his face. Shaggy, wavy, brown hair and green eyes that lit up when he smiled.
It was Thespian Club initiation and we were to follow requests made by the other students in the club. Dressed as Dorothy from the “Wizard of Oz” with a sign on my back, I was pretty easy to spot. I’m not sure how many other initiates there were, but we all looked pretty silly and we all had signs. I remember responding, “I’m going to be late for History if I have to do that.” Longview High School was large even in 1979 and I had to still make it down the main hall toward the back of the school. I was given a reprieve and my day continued. I didn’t see him anymore until later that week.
At Teague Park, we were to meet our mentors from drama that were suppose to help us navigate through our first year. I was older than most initiates because I was a junior and it was my first year at LHS. I don’t know why I even signed up for drama as an elective. I had never been interested in being in theatre before except when I was in sixth grade and our choir put on the musical “South Pacific.”
Mercer (as we called our drama teacher) teamed up the ‘Big brothers & sisters’ with the new members. When my name was called I was paired with John, as my ‘Big brother.’ I believe it was an accident. I never heard from Mercer that he asked to be mine and John never told me either. We were friends from the start. I can’t remember how much time we spent together at first, but before long we were hanging out together. He was very easy to talk with. John had a great sense of humor and I loved to laugh, so it was like salt and pepper. One complimented the other.
To be truthful, I’m not for sure what he saw in me. I’ve never been beautiful. Passable, yes, but not anything more. I’ve never been slender. I had a nice smile, but I had a terrible over-bite and was shy around most people. Small talk has always eluded me and still does to this day. I seemed to know John forever. He let me hang around with him and his friends. He drove me everywhere since I didn’t have a car or a driver’s license. We were great friends, but I never thought of him as anything other than that.
I actually met my first real boyfriend buying John a valentine cookie at the mall. Tony Williams worked at the Great American Cookie Factory. I thought he was beautiful. He was athletic, but short for a guy. Blond hair and a great chest. He played football for the Hallsville Bobcats. We flirted on and off for a few weeks and then we begin to date. He was the first boy that I parked with in a car and he was a wonderful kisser. We dated for about three months and then he broke up with me. My friends and I retaliated by skipping school, driving to Hallsville High School and letting the air out of all four tires on his truck. Silly, I know, but satisfying at the time.
I’m not sure why I’m going this far back down memory lane, but it’s making me smile!
The story continues, but I’ll stop now and go to sleep with a smile on my face.