"Children begin by loving their parents; after a time they judge them; rarely, if ever, do they forgive them." Oscar Wilde 1997
Mel and I had been together a year. It had been a smooth beautiful ride. The children were our only disruption but if they hadn’t, they wouldn’t have existed.
All who have children know this and teenagers are a special treasure if you enjoy being treated like a child…by a child. Add to that a debate student and you have self-righteousness all sewn up. Raising a teenager is a showcase of maladjustment, idiocy and a series of low comedy disasters.
Yet, Mel was their god(dess). I don’t know what she was doing with them. Just recently one of Devon’s best friends told me that Mel would give them Vicodin and Schnapps to shut up. I don’t think she did. But hazzah to her because they were pretty well behaved when she was around. And the girl who told me this is now 30 and actually cherishes those moments, so I didn’t want to spoil the fun for her. Her history is hers, who am I to ruin her treasured high school years?
I worked some unrealistic hours. Mel worked the afternoon/night shift at Methodist. She would arrive at work at around 2:45 PM, take the half hour walk to her destination in Anesthesia. She got off at 11:00 PM and arrived home around midnight.
Devon had her extracurricular activities and when she was not involved in debate she was out at the clubs watching her brother with his group “The Fools”.
I know, how could I let a 16 year old go to clubs to watch a bunch of punk rockers whose parents had no idea. Well…her brother made her stand backstage, or on stage. She was safe. He was and still is very protective of her. I gave Devon a wide berth as a teenager. As long as she got good grades, not A’s or B’s but straight A’s of 98 and above, I had nothing to be concerned about. Very difficult for any student. I know, To the uneducated, an A is just three sticks. Me, I remember the first time I heard about the reward system at school “Look, you got a gold star” All I thought about was what was I going to do with that? Nothing could provoke high grades from me.
She had her debate, which she was the researchist. She had to compile information on every subject which is why she got such high grades. She read everything. The Wall Street Journal, The Christian Science monitor, which surprisingly is a factual source for many current affairs. She did not have the resource of the net as we do today, though the internet existed, it was still in the beta stage…as opposed to now. I had purchased the entire Britannica Encyclopedias. The large ones with the gold gild and leather covers. I still have these and cannot unload them. In case you are interested. (They look lovely on the shelf). Nonetheless, she was an ideal teenager…on paper. When she would practice her debate speeches in the allotted time she was to be given, I understood NOTHING. Of course I was incompetent even though I didn’t know enough to be incompetent.
For the most part she wore grunge clothing, Doc Martins and multiple piercings. But when she went to debate tournaments she wore Karen Scott and Kasper suits, Jimmy Choo shoes and a perfect bob haircut. To give you an idea of what I was dealing with, she would get ready to go out with her brother. The uniform was usually some black t-shirt with something regrettable on the chest, ripped hose over more ripped hose usually of some sort of netting…for Halloween she had spider web hose. She would top this off with a kilt style short skirt and her doc martins and her makeup…no need to discuss that. On One occasion, when she opened the door to leave I told her how absolutely cute she was. She slowly closed the door and turned to go to her room to change.
Of course every teenager falls prey to peer pressure, even her. And this child had a strong personality.
One evening she and her best friend went to a local chain store. Devon had $60 in her pocket. But her friend dared her to “lift” something. Devon chose some No.2 pencils. With $60 in her pocket. No.2 Pencils. And she didn’t do it well, the first time in her life she failed…miserably. The phone rang and I saw on the caller ID the store name. Immediately I was terrified. I knew she was there and I was afraid she had been hurt.
We went to court and Devon did not want us to go up with her. She stood in the line waiting her turn and then the judge said her name…loudly.
When she got up to the bench, the Judge asked her “Where is your client?”
That is how impressive she dresses ... when she needs to. She was dressed as if she were going on a debate tournament. She explained to the judge that she was “The Client”. He told her to call her parents up, being Mel and I.
The judge was Judge Weise, a famous personality. A movie was made about a major Insurance Carrier being sued in a groundbreaking lawsuit and he was the lawyer that brought the suit. He was also on Fox news every Friday night for a “Letter to the Lawyer/Judge” type of show. In other words, he was a popular person.
He asked Devon what she planned on doing with her life. She told him she planned on attending Law School. He covered up the microphone that he really didn’t need anyhow and told her he would not accept anything but a “Not Guilty” plea. He feared she would never make it into law school should this make her "permanent record", something she had been worried about since she was 8 years old. He dropped the case and hired her as an assistant.
The first day she worked for him, he brought her to the courthouse. He needed to go into the court quickly, so he handed her his keys and wallet. And left her with all of his worldly goods for a couple of hours. He also made her become a bondsman…bondswoman. AT sixteen. This was the child that appeared to the general public.
Of course behind closed doors she was the polar opposite. And her bedroom???? Oh…I just cannot say. Mel got so angry about it, but as I told her, if the child gets the grades she needs to be successful, she can hire a maid.
Devon could be left to her own devices. So I worked long hours. I needed to, the child was expensive and so was Mel. I could work 40 hours or 100 hours a week, I was always broke. I live on Social Security and I have more money now at the end of the month than I did when I brought home $1500 a week. After taxes.
When one works long hours on a computer they will be regaled with physical discomfort. Sometimes my neck would hurt so bad that I would get a migraine lasting several days, cutting into my earnings. I have an unusual metabolism. While most people when taking a narcotic would be ten sheets to the wind, I was hyper. Since, I have been diagnosed with an “endorphin deficiency”. Doctors were pretty loose with medications and I was given Hydrocodone. Mel would go to doctors with me, thus I was constantly having tests done.
Then Mel introduced me to Soma. She said she had thought this through… It’s best to catch a “Mel” train of thought early before it derails and kills the whole town.
And nothing would be the same.
Beginning of Book
Yes, this is absolutely positively true. If you lived this wouldn't you write about it? Some of the names of characters in this blog are fictitious. This is an account of actual events. Some of the events have been compiled together for the flow of the story. Even when I read my own work, I wonder how it could be so. But if you study your own life and compartmentalize it into less than 200 pages, you would be surprised how interesting it really is!
TRUTH HAS WITNESSES (Dianne Lindsey) This material is the copyright Dianne Schuch Lindsey and cannot be duplicated in any fashion without the express permission of the Author. All rights reserved ©