Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Character Sketch: C.

is a precocious child.
Born like an avalanche into her broken parent's lives but they sifted through their different races and religions, blizzards and traffic jams to find enough love for her even if they didn't have enough for each other. Her mother held her every night and thought that C. was scared, but the only thing C. thought about is big red balloons sticking to branches.

C. was calm on the inside until she was three and then her world was all princesses, Kitty-cats, moo-cows, and puzzles. C. wiggles while in time-out and runs around naked. She knows no rhythm but dances. Her S's sound like P's and she loves carrots and nothing green. For Halloween she was a jack-o-lantern-superhero-princess. She said, "cricket or cleat" and everyone ruined it for her when they said, "No, it's trick or treat."
Once she sang about rockin' and rollin' all night, without knowing some consider that the devil's music. She slept under her bed and pretended to brush her teeth until someone told her monsters lived under there and that the tooth fairy wouldn't take a rotten tooth. By then, she knew how to paint with more than her fingers and she noticed things that blew in the wind and far off noises.
When she was six, her mother found four gray hairs in C.'s Hershey kiss colored curls and C. cried harder with each pluck. She thought she broke a toy once, and she wanted to forget it, to hide it from her babysitter, to never break her own heart again. But she realized what living really felt like when it snapped back together. Unfortunately, C. didn't know that not everything is an easy of a fix.
C. didn't concern herself with where things came from but she always asked, "Where is the daddy?" when the story said, "Daddy" but didn't picture him on the page. C. skinned her knees, too many times for scars not to form, while learning to ride her bike. She said, "I hate you" by the monkey bars, to a boy who loved her but pushed her, and bit her, and cut a chunk of her waist length hair to her ear. C. did like the weight off of her, but it all grew back.
She visited her daddy only once. The day she got back home, C. stared down at the palm tree on her one souviner t-shirt as her mother washed the lice from her head.
C. kissed a boy, as a "double dog dare," under an elm tree, then was bitten by a spider on her knee. That night she cried while her mother pushed puss from the bite mark and until she saw Andy kissing Leslie behind Burger King, she thought it was all worth it. C. wondered if she would forever associate heartbreak with oozing wounds. Her mother said, "Your knees are strong." And C. said, "But nothing else is." And her mother said, "You're tough." And she said, "I'll never be the same." And her mother said, "I love you." And C. said, "I know."


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