Thursday, April 5, 2007

I Once Was Lost

Not very long ago, I was writing about how I fall in and out of people’s lives. How I’m not a very good friend. Etcetera, etcetera, etcetera. Out of the blue, someone else has appeared from my past. [Good thing I’m not a guy or perhaps some long, lost offspring would be appearing at my doorstep. Now that’s something a girl would remember going through. A guy? Not so much.]

What’s my reaction to this? Joy. Really. Joy. [And not just because they know about this blog.] I loved those people. I loved them very much. I will tell you the story of them. Perhaps you’d like to pull up a chair. If it’s early morning or late at night, perhaps you’d like to get a nice fleece throw to keep the chill off.

I started smoking and drinking and smoking dope much younger than anyone should start. I guess in today’s world, being 12 and doing those things isn’t that unusual. Back then, before color TV, it was young. [I joke. Color TV was around. We just couldn’t afford one until I was 7 or 8.] I lived for being high. Sure, I still went to school. I still showed up. But, more often than not, I showed up under the influence.

I am sorry about that now. I am sorry for many things now. I accept who I was, what I’ve done. I am at peace with it. I still need to work out the kinks of how to get my kids to not be so freakin’ stupid as their mom, but I’ll get there.

And I believe I am who I am today in large part thanks to a teacher and his wife. His name is Dale. Her name is Claudia. They are much older now. [Hee, hee, hee.] Then, they were hip young things. He came to teach theatre when I was a sophomore in high school. I was 15. The other theatre teacher was a bastard who is likely rotting in hell right now. Good. [Oh, sorry, see, when you think about the past, all those feelings you’ve passed come up and bite you when you’re not looking. I mean, may God have mercy on his soul. Of course I mean that. Really. I guess.]

Dale appeared. He was 23. Claudia was 25. Young things, right? Young, poor things living on a teacher’s salary and a secretary’s salary and struggling to scrimp and save and buy a house and raise a family. And they opened their lives to me, a wondering lost soul. And they didn’t just open up their lives to me. They opened their lives up to many.

It was the year I was 15 that my mother asked my father for a divorce. It was a very bad year. And I was a very lost soul who didn’t get along with anyone in my family. And divorce back then was odd and scary for other kids and other parents. “Could it be contagious?” I guess some thought so.

But some didn’t. Some saw a lost soul. And opened their hearts to her. And opened their arms to her. And opened their home to her.

And 30 years later, when I remember that lost soul, I remember who helped her find her way. And I thank them. With joy.


Undercover Angel said...

It's wonderful when teachers really care. There are so many out there that really don't and are just in it for the paycheck...

Scribbit said...

One of my friends had a similar experience and was eventually adopted by one of her high school teachers.


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