I’ll never claim to have had the worst upbringing. I was raised by my grandma, with my older sister, from the time I was a year old and she was three; my sister, not my grandma… That would be awkward. We lived in frugality, never having much that we wanted, but never going without anything we absolutely needed.
Guardianship was taken by my Gma, because my parents simply weren’t ready to be parents. If I’m being honest, they still aren’t, but that’s here nor there. The person one might refer to as my “biological father,” used to beat my mom physically, and emotionally.
He had held guns to her head and dared her to leave him; that sort of thing. My sister can recall some of this, but honestly I was far too young. I do have some odd reccuring dreams, however… “The Mentor,” being the most prominent.
Anyway, I was a relatively normal kid, albeit rambunctious and slightly pyromaniacal. I also exhibited abnormal cognitive adeptness from a young age. (I don’t like being proud of things, so keep the praise in your pocket, please.)
After a few incidents, attempting to set my sister’s room aflame, setting my grandma’s Dodge Shadow aflame, roasting the entire west side of our apartment building, and otherwise just having a very unhealthy relationship with fire in general, it was decided that I would undergo therapy.
It was at therapy that I was given certified pyromaniac status, among some other debatable labels that aren’t entirely relevant. I was six or seven at that time, though my therapy sessions were part of my weekly routine until I was maybe thirteen, or fourteen. Teresa, my sister, would join me in the counseling sessions, because we were government funded orphans, so everything was free to us, other than certain things for school.
Teachers would become frustrated by my unwillingness to cooperate with school syllabus, or their rules in general. “Bad kid,” was a term I was numb to, but “problem child,” I never became used to. I’d look directly in the eyes of the sad sack of white dried up dog shit who’d say I had a problem, and tell them to go fuck nine of themselves.
Eventually, they caught on that out of school suspension was a free ticket to a lazy week at home, and started giving me in school suspensions. When that happened, I just stopped going altogether. If I only knew…
I got my equivalency diploma at seventeen, before the rest of my class graduated high school. I took two tests, passed, and that was it. Free forever. Until I wasn’t..
You remember the moment you realized that the real world was all about working your dick into the dirt until it was no longer a metaphorical statement? That was a pivotal moment for me. I knew then that there was no possible way for me to make it as a musician, a writer, a pro skateboarder, or whatever else I had hoped to become until then. So I did what I thought was necessary; I started working.
Burning Over A New Leaf
I had worked a bunch of hard labor jobs like landscaping, roofing, rubber molding, etc but knew that I wanted to use my mind and not my back. This was going to take some serious consideration, which was never my strong suit. I was always more of a “just go for it,” person, so that’s what I did.
I was working at a plastics factory when I started college. I hadn’t decided on a major yet, but I took the prerequisites for biology, because at the time, I had more interest in organic existence than in technology. That turned out to be a super fruitful decision when I realized I was an idiot savant when it came to medical science. In my first few semesters, I basically handed my gpa to William Wallace and had him throw it through the fucking roof (Scottish Ironman reference), I made the dean’s list, and was given the chance to become pre-med.
I was on top of the world! I was still working full time while going to school full time, I had a truck and a sports car in my driveway, and somehow had time to drink on Saturdays with my close friends!
Awesome job, right?! Then I got hammered drunk one Halloween night and drove home. Biggest mistake of my life. Smashed the truck all to shit, attempting to answer a text from my friend while driving home. If you’re thinking “what a fuckin idiot!” Then you’d be right! From that moment on, my life has just been an uphill decline. By that I mean, my life has declined in such a way that it seems as though I’m trudging up an impossible hill.
There’s no happy ending. The sports car I had in my driveway? I thought it was a good idea to sell it to pay for the upcoming semester that I hadn’t received loans for, and I was still not qualified for grants quite yet. I also had to put my studies on hold, because without a vehicle and now no license, I couldn’t drive myself to campus, nearly fifteen miles away. Not so bad right? I still had a job… Shit I lost that too?! Fuck!
I got a gig with one of my best friends, in a muffler shop, doing… Well.. muffler work. I learned to weld and bend pipes, and it was just him and me in there for five years. Within that time I had a beautiful daughter. To this day she’s the one thing that makes my heart feel like my entire existence wasn’t a cruel joke. Now with another daughter literally days, weeks, minutes away from joining us here in the dread manifest plane, I hope to show her that it’s not so bad if you can swallow your pride lol
My fiance is unfortunate to have to sit on the throne I made for her out of my own fecal matter and leg hair, but I’m fortunate to get to say that we share the same air. She is the queen that I prayed for some time ago, and for the record, I don’t believe in deities from any traditional sense, but I did pray, and she is here with me now, so who knows?
I might update this thing, given that I did skip MANY crucial details. I skipped Buddhism, I skipped addiction, I skipped meeting my biological father, losing the father I would consider my father, losing my Gma (that was a huge turning point, that I’m still not back on track from). I skipped too damn many details. So I’ll be back to make this a fuller, more complete memoir. Until then..