Typical Midwest middle class family.
If that phrase doesn’t help you form a mental image, I apologize. This post may not make that much sense.
The first family member I told about my move to Los Angeles was my younger brother.
“When are you leaving?”
His thumbs twirled as he delved back into Call of Duty, and I could see his brain processing the news as ‘I get your room’. I called my older sister, who lives in Washington, D.C. the next day.
“Oh my God! That’s so cool! Have you told Mom and Dad yet?”
“Are you going to?”
After a pause that was longer than it needed to be: “I guess.”
“You’re going to have so much fun. I’m jealous.”
“Really? I’m having an anxiety attack.”
INT. KITCHEN – AFTERNOON
MOTHER sits at the table on her computer.
I didn’t sugar-coat it. I want to write for TV. LA is the place to do it. I told her about some of the places I found with housing potential.
Mom: “Can I just say one thing?”
Kate: (sighs) “What?”
Well, she kept it to one thing. Silly me. While I was worried about affording rent and a car, not to mention food and healthcare, I should have been thinking about my drug budget. I’ll have to stick with the cheaper drugs for a few months. The mountain of cocaine is a dream…no. I don’t do drugs. It’s never been an issue. Now, it is, for some reason.
I let her ramble. Things like: “you don’t have a home there,” and “I guess that means you’ve given up on horseshoeing school,” came up.
I kid you not. My mother had a dream for me and it was shoeing horses. How do these things happen? Mom had my whole life planned before I hit ten years old. She even picked out the guy I was supposed to marry by the time I was eight. Seriously? In the words of Sarah Palin: you betcha. Imagine her disappointment when he moved away after second grade.
I know this because she told me. It is one of my greatest failings (in her eyes) that I haven’t pursued a relationship with a guy I haven’t seen or heard from in sixteen years who may or may not remember me.
Are you starting to see why I need to break free?
Let’s tack a lesson on here:
Life’s hard. The economy sucks. People will do obscene and degrading things for minimum wage just to have a job. Can you imagine what they would do for more?
But, things can get better. Maybe you don’t need to pack up the car and take a Thelma and Louise dive into something, but you need to get out. You need to be on your own. Your parents will never see you as an adult. They had dreams for you, but you aren’t their horse-shoeing Barbie.
Lesson learned? Good. I’m going to make the world a better place.