Strange Confessions: I once sneered at a girl and said, “No!” in a disgusted way, when asked if we could roller skate together on a girl’s choice skate.
Our class at St. Vincent, (my elementary school), would have skate nights at “Wheels” once every month or so on Friday nights. (Bonus points for those who remember the splendiforous Wheels: local roller rink/eatery/arcade, it was an old supermarket, right next to the Villa Theater on Highland Drive. Wheels is long gone now, it’s some mini-strip mall thing, as all good things seem to go. Even the Villa is no more. Last I saw it was a middle-eastern rug gallery.) Our class at St. Vincent, at least how I saw, always got along with each other. Take me for instance: I was not a sports guy, a rich kid, a dungeons and dragons player, or a smart kid. Yet, I got along with all those types there. I absolutely loved going to St. Vincent’s, specifically for the memories of these friendships, now long gone as well. If I had a choice to go to a high school or elementary school reunion, I’d definitely want to see how all my elementary friends got on.
Yet, this memory has started to show cracks in my rose colored memory vision glasses, as I have researched this girl and had discussions about it with my wife. First of all, as this memory comes into my head once in a while, I cringe at my actions and lack of empathy. I wonder about how this affected this girl later on in life. I’m just sure she wakes up in the middle of the night from the nightmare she has all the time, about the cold-hearted boy that ruined her life from that point on. Or, maybe, I think too much of myself and the influence a moment I had with her that probably meant nothing. And yet, I still have these guilty feelings.
Anyway, this girl, let’s call her Tammy, she had tight, curly, short hair over a large forehead, buck teeth and was a slight bit overweight. She was quiet but smiled a lot. My memories of St. Vincent may have been great, being a boy and feeling included, but I never saw the girls side of things. I have seen how cruel girls can be to each other, especially in grade school. Maybe her smile was covering up the pain she felt because she was ill-treated or ignored by the other girls. It’s a terrible thing to think that she, just wanting to be accepted for once, asked the “nice” guy who was friends with everyone, only to be rejected once again. It seriously causes me pain to think about.
Then, I wonder about where she is now. If maybe this jerk (me) came out of the past and asked her to forgive him for that moment. Would she remember, appreciate the effort, or laugh at the idea that it meant anything to her now? So, I looked her up. Yes, I remember her name, how could I forget. I found out she was adopted. Her birth parents marriage was interracial and the mother’s parents never liked them being together, and after Tammy’s birth the parents got a divorce and gave her up for adoption. This was 1969 Utah after all. I found all this out on a site that links up adoptees to their birth parents. Isn’t technology… strange? I also saw she has a Facebook profile. So I went on and checked out her profile pics. I was a bit surprised: she is a heavy metal chick, who hadn’t really grown up. I also noticed that she went to Valley High, which was where the bad kids went. Most of her pics were taken in a night club/bar. All the girls wore immodest black, white, or jean material clothing, lipstick; bright, glossy red. The guys had long hair and ripped t-shirts. They all were having a good time, obviously. All her female friends comments were like “You look so good” or something to that extent, and the guys all saying how “hawt” she was. And then she’d be all like, “Awww, Thanks, and stuff”. Oops, sorry. I fell back into the 80s for a second there.
Now, I realize at this point, that nothing I say will make any difference in her life now. Not because she is happy or forgot, but that people’s lives go on. Here I am dwelling on my selfish actions in the past, well, not dwelling really, more like glimpsing occasionally, and their life goes on. Then I wonder; if that one guy came up to me, telling me how sorry he was for being a bully and thought it was funny to sick his little brother on me and I could do nothing about it because he would do… something to me, would I think he is ridiculous for thinking about me after all these years? I would be astounded! I would tell him no worries, that it was just part of the formation of who I was. Sure I was afraid for my mom to drop me off early to school and I’d have to deal with you, but it’s all cool now. It would be neat… in a weird sort of way. So anyway, I’ve seen lots of people my age who have never grown up and wonder if they had some sort of horrific life that made them that way. Hey! My life isn’t perfect, I know. Everyone’s life shouldn’t look like mine. But there is something about people who are in their 40s still partying like they were in their early 20s. I know, again, my life isn’t like everyone else’s, but… never mind. Lot’s of things to contemplate in this confession.
My point is: How far would you go to seek forgiveness from wrongs done by you in the past?
Do you have a story to tell?
This is a copy from my original Stranger in Rebellion Facebook site found here. If you liked it go like that page and thankee faithful reader.