Everyone has a story.
All of us were once little girls.
We all have memories. Some happy. Some not.
Some we share.
Yet, many more lay hidden in the secret pages of our heart.
We try to forget about them.
So that we can be strong. So that we can be happy. So that we can be free.
That’s what I thought, until one day, I stood at the cusp of a childhood dream about to come true.
But as my pen hit the paper to capture those moments, they all came alive.
My memories were no longer stories I once told myself. And I began reliving them.
Unexpected. Painful memories. Trauma. Anxiety.
Just a Visit
I was seven years tall. I didn’t want to be afraid.
It was supposed to be simple. Just a visit.
On the weekends, my father would come see my sister and me. After the divorce.
I was supposed to climb into the car with the cracking vinyl seats, into the car with the peeling rooftop — of my daddy’s olive green Nova. It smelled like old, dirty ashtrays, as I slid in the back. It smelled sad and lonely. But, I didn’t say anything.
I kept quiet as my little sister with chubby wrists and cherub-rose cheeks toddled in to sit beside me. I felt small and awkward, my hands on my lap and shoulders hunched over as my daddy turned around and smiled a little too widely, his eyes begging for me to smile back. But, I didn’t know what to do.
Because my momma said nothing about this visit. Other than I better not take anything from him. I better not come home with anything, other than what I left with that morning.
Which was nothing.
As we rode across town, across the train tracks, up and over the metal buildings and smokestacks of the old Del Monte cannery in Sunnyvale, everything stood eerily silent. It was Saturday morning and everyone and everything was still in bed. The streets rolled by empty, as I looked out the window and wondered where we were heading.
I still remember how big the Kay Bee toy store looked as my father tried to hold my hand walking through the parking lot. The square letters spelling K-a-y-B-e-e were suspended kid-tousled happy on the signage way up high.
Even though my little sister couldn’t read, she didn’t need to. She was getting excited, her little feet hurrying ahead.
But, I knew better.
Nothing ever came simple for me.
That day at the toy store ended up just as I had feared…
To be continued…
Psst… I have a VERY special announcement at the end of my post today on (in)courage.
So, be sure to join me there today, friends. I especially need your company as I step out. Thanks for walking this journey with me.
To Read The Rest Of the Story
…To read the rest of the story “Make Room For You. Your Story. For Rest.” – click here to join me over at DaySpring’s (in)courage site, where today’s post is published.
Take a virtual coffee break together and share your thoughts. I’ve turned off comments here, so we can all meet up there!