Church Makes Everything Better, Right?

Have you ever looked back on your life and wanted to kick yourself in the ass for associating with someone for way too long? Do you ever wonder why you tolerated things from people that you wouldn’t tolerate at all today? Yea, me too.

A lot happened after I returned home to California. It’s true that staying with my mom was a disaster and tension with my sister only worsened but that was a walk in the park in comparison to the drama within my social circle. I think most of us dealt with unnecessary drama in our early 20’s to some degree but this was like a “Made for TV Movie,” kind of drama. I have moved on but writing this entry has made me realize that while I’ve moved past the situation, really thinking about it infuriates me. I did get a hands on lesson in what loyal friendship means. I had a huge social circle but only a handful of real friends. I was 21 and even though I was really smart, I was still naïve enough to surround myself with the wrong people.

I had a few separate social circles between school and work. I made the mistake of introducing my childhood friend (who was also my neighbor) to my group of friends from when I worked at the sandwich shop. It did not take this girl long to immerse herself in the group, especially because there were some people she already knew from her early school years. It didn’t take her long to engage in sexual relationships throughout the circle and create drama along the way. She created turmoil long before I moved to Washington. In hindsight, that turmoil was on the list of my many reasons for leaving California in the first place. I lost sight of all my reasons apparently. When I came back from Washington, the mess was bigger.

What I didn’t realize is that by moving away for nearly a year, the dynamic in my social circle changed. I was now an outsider. This girl I grew up with was now roommates with my former roommate. She was romantically involved with my former roommate’s brother and he lived with them too. Outside of that, she had extracurricular relationships throughout other social circles with no regard for how it hurt other people. She confided in me every detail of her cheating. She constantly used me as an alibi when she needed to lie to her boyfriend, her parents (who she left her kids with), her husband (I’ll explain this later) and even her sisters who I was close to as well. She was drinking in excess and completely out of control. Her 2 babies were toddlers, around ages 2 and 4. I loved those boys.

I had been close friends with this girl since we were 11 and the situation was upsetting. I confronted her about her behavior and let her know that I would not lie for her to anyone. I let her know I was not an alibi and I expressed my concern for her kids. She didn’t appreciate what I had to say and our exchange was harsh. We did not hang out for about a week then attended a birthday party for a mutual friend at a bar. That night ended in her getting so drunk that she needed a babysitter and a sober ride. She could barely form a sentence or walk but she made a big scene as we were leaving the bar, insisting that she was ok to drive herself. Looking back, I’m sure the attention is exactly what she was after.

I was spending the night with my friend (also her mutual friend) that night and he lived close by. He and I brought her and her car to his house because she was refusing to go home after an earlier fight with her boyfriend. Said fight is what initiated the drunken tirade in the first place. When we arrived to our friend’s house we all went straight to his bedroom. She threw herself down on his bed and was moaning out loud as if she was having an orgasm. She thought it was funny. It was obnoxious and I was embarrassed for her. Our friends mom was home and in the next room and this chick was out of control. He and I finally reasoned with her and she passed out on the trundle bed. He and I ended up sharing his twin bed.

The next morning she had to be dragged out of bed to get up and leave so everyone could go to work. She called in sick. She and I exchanged brief words that morning and they were not pleasant. I let her know I was pissed and didn’t appreciate the way she acted the night before. I told her she owed our friend an apology. She got defensive and made excuses. She indicated she was sick, hung over and had too big of a headache to talk about it. She left in her car, I left in mine and drove to work. We did not talk after that.

About a week later I got a hand written letter at my place of work with a very vague accusation that I did something inappropriate to her physically on the night she got so drunk. She suggested I needed mental help. She went ahead and told our group of friends and her family this story as well.

She accused me in a letter that she mailed to my job. Let that sink in. It was non-specific so 20 years later I’m still in the dark about what the actual accusation was but I know it was sexual in nature. It was bizarre and it made me physically ill. That’s one hell of an accusation. Defamation of character, anyone?

What I am not in the dark about is the reaction of our friends who basically took the position of silence. Keep in mind, I had a 10 year history with this girl and her family separate of my friends. I had a 5 year history with my group of friends, prior to introducing her. Even better, I had a 5 year history of friendship with the guy she was living with and cheating on. I stood up for all of them and confronted her lying and cheating. They didn’t know that part. They didn’t bother to ask me either. Rather than talk to me or even try to give me the benefit of the doubt, they chose to accept her version of the story without question and ultimately rode the fence until our friendship faded away. Some of us are acquaintances on social media now but our deep friendship is long gone.

These are the same friends who spent all their time in my apartment when they wanted to crash for the night, eat a hot meal or party. When I moved away they all rented a different apartment together. When I moved back from Washington the only thing I had to offer was my friendship. Clearly, that wasn’t enough anymore.

They chose each other. I’m not suggesting anyone should have ended friendship on either side but it’s really sad when you have been loyal and truthful to people and they can’t even give you credit for that. My good reputation didn’t matter because she had a sexual relationship with someone in the group which created family ties with the others. Her reputation was to be a gossip, a liar, a cheater and a drunk but her accusation stood without question because she was sleeping with the right person.

I will give credit where credit is due. Two people who were directly involved in the situation stood by me and spoke up. The first person was our mutual friend who was there the night of the so called assault. He and I were both with her at all times in his bedroom. He said from the beginning that her accusation was impossible and it was, under the circumstances. The 2nd person who stood up for me, ironically, was her younger sister. Her younger sister was a part of our social circle and was always a great time! She had her share of fun but never at the expense of others and like me, she told the truth. She knew exactly who her sister was and she made it clear that this accusation was bullshit. She made that clear not only to our circle of friends but also to her parents and family who I’d grown up with.

In the social circle, most of our friends just slowly stopped interacting with me. They all lived together and hung out together so it would have been weird to include me if she was there. I was pushed out quietly. Funny thing is, she stayed with that guy for years to follow. She continued to cause turmoil for him, his family and the friends that surrounded them. She cheated on him repeatedly. Last I heard, she abandoned her children during their childhood years (They are now in their mid-20). She has chosen a life of drugs over her family and is absent.

See, every choice has a consequence. They chose her and the turmoil she brings. I don’t need to punish them or remind them of how wrong they were. They got to live with the consequences because she created years of chaos long after I was gone. Every adult who ignored the truth about this girl deserved what they chose but her kids deserved so much better. This is the most upsetting part. She had those kids by choice in high school. I was close to them since birth and can still recite most songs from “Barney” because we watched a lot of it back then. I think my favorite is still “The Peanut Butter and Jelly Song.”

I grew up with this girl and spent my junior high and high school years as the “4th daughter.” When this accusation was made, I had nothing to hide. I reached out to her parents right away to talk about what happened because I was so upset. I called and asked to come talk to them face to face and her dad told me never to call or come around and that I was not welcome. I didn’t even get to tell my side. They did not want to hear anything. I was told later that she told her parents that she wouldn’t let her kids around them if they associated with me. I can’t blame them for choosing their grandchildren but I can look at the bigger picture and see their part in her self-destruction.

They had an ignorant sense of invincibility because of their Christianity. Just because you are a church family doesn’t mean you are immune to the realities of the world. Your kids are totally capable of sex, drugs and rock & roll… and in excess! Jesus isn’t stopping them. Have you ever talked to an adult who spent their childhood attending church camp? You might want to ask them what made the experience so spiritual. If they are honest, they might tell you they got their first hand job or felt up their first girl there. There I go again, telling the uncomfortable truth. Church camp is a breeding ground for youth sexual experimentation. The end.

I had many conversations throughout my teenage years with my friend’s parents when she was in constant trouble. The denial was strong because in church people don’t have pre-marital sex or drink alcohol so she just needed more church. Church fixes everything. Since my home life and family were all about sex, drugs and rock & roll, I knew that shit was real and I tried really hard to convince them it was real. Maybe they thought I was a conflicted kid who didn’t know any better. Who knows?

Growing up with her family taught me that Christianity actually means nothing when people use it as an identity rather than a way of life. I promise you this… I’ve never used it as an identity and for good reason.

In a previous post, “Childhood, What’s that?” I shared that after moving out of my dad’s house as a teenager, I made arrangements to rent a room from my friend’s grandmother. This is the same family. I paid weekly rent, bought my own groceries, and had my own transportation. I provided for myself entirely. I lived there several months until I was told I had to move out because I was not attending church regularly enough (3 times per week). I worked full time and went to school so church was 3rd on the list for me. I found another place to live because I could not work, go to school and feel pressured to never miss church. I was 16 years old. During that time, their daughter was a new mom who was cheating on her husband and heavily using drugs and alcohol. She made it to church three times a week so she was golden. Ughh.

When I was 21, this same family who asked me to move out years earlier due to my declining church attendance, completely disowned me because of a one sided accusation. This same family knew their daughter was constant trouble and they chose to ignore that and disown me without conversation. How very “Christian” of them.

I remember feeling so betrayed when I was asked to move out of the grandmothers house because I started going to that church on my own when I was in junior high. It felt like my safe place where people actually cared that I was a young person struggling. Church was a choice, right? I chose to get baptized on my own because of the overwhelming sense of fellowship I felt initially. It was about a year after I got baptized that I was asked to move out. Suddenly, I didn’t feel a sense of fellowship. I felt a sense of obligation. I felt like I was in trouble for not attending enough. I got calls, cards and letters asking where I was. This stretched beyond the realm of general concern. It felt stifling so I ran far and fast. I remained close to the family but slowly distanced myself from the church. I think I only went a few times after that. So much for “fellowship.”

When I first met my friend we were 11 and in the same grade in school. I went to a school outside my district up until 5th grade because it was closer to my babysitter’s house. In the 6th grade I transferred to the school in my neighborhood which is when I became friends with her. Looking back, it’s odd that we were neighbors for at least 9 years before we ever interacted because she lived right across the street. She also had 2 sisters; one was 2 years older, one 2 years younger. I knew all the other kids in my neighborhood and played with them regularly despite attending different schools but I did not know these girls at all until I was in the same 6th grade class as the middle daughter. We became friends very quickly.

We were complete opposites. She was already wearing makeup every day and was a pro at making her big hair even bigger. She wore name brands and bragged about her “Guess Jeans” which at that time were new and popular. If you asked my dad, they were expensive and no different than my $15 jeans. We did not wear name brand clothing and we knew better than to ask.

She always wanted to do my hair and makeup. My wardrobe was practical and always in good condition but I was not a fashion diva, nor did my parents allow me to be. She still liked to coordinate my Kmart Sweaters and Mervyn’s jeans. I didn’t care half as much about being a fashionista but I was a good sport. We spent a lot of time being typical girls.

When I look back on the situation, I believe the reason I did not meet her prior to being in the same class is because her and her sister’s did not socialize much outside of their family. Most of the time we spent together was at her house which for me was a more pleasant environment than being at home. I was allowed to stay there often, and later than any other friends’ house because it was just across the street. I slept over there several nights a week, especially in the summer. I grew close to her parents and sisters. Her grandparents lived just a few blocks away and I knew them well.

Their family dynamic was very different from ours. The parents were still together after getting married in high school and having three daughters. The family socialized minimally unless it was with family or members of their church. No one drank alcohol, smoked cigarettes or did drugs. Every person in my family struggled with some sort of addiction and was divorced so this was completely foreign to me.

They attended church as a family on Sunday morning, Sunday night and Wednesday night, every week. Church attendance was not even a question; they just went and it was an expectation. In fact, regardless of where they traveled, if it was a Sunday they found a congregation and attended church while on vacation. As I got closer to the family in my early teen years, I started attending church on Sunday mornings for bible class.

I was exposed to religion early in my childhood. In a family of mostly non-religious people, we had a handful of Jehovah Witnesses. My dad was always in touch but we were not close to those relatives because they lived a different lifestyle than my dad. I knew them and I was aware of their religion because they did not participate in family holidays.

My paternal grandmother was a Jehovah Witness who was dis-fellowshipped sometime in the 70’s-80’s because she was a smoker and that was not acceptable to the church. I’m sure there are more details but cigarettes were a factor. I know that her being dis-fellowshipped impacted her relationship with her daughter and sister (they were witnesses) because of the rules of the church. I don’t know the entire story but I was told my grandmother’s attendance was shunned when my aunt got married to a Jehovah Witness boy because of her “dis-fellowshipped” status within the congregation.

My dad was not religious but always felt connected to the Jehovah Witness religion and studied off and on over the years with a few witnesses who came to our house. He also set me up with someone to study with from time to time. I remember feeling like I was studying because he wanted me to and not because I wanted to. I was afraid to say no. I attended the Kingdom Hall on several Sundays and went to a few annual Memorial’s with my aunt. I learned a lot about the basic teachings of the bible through my studies with various witnesses as a child. I never felt connected to what I was learning and my curiosity yearned for different answers. Looking back, I found it odd that my dad advocated for a lifestyle he did not emulate. It definitely confused me because in some way he tried to assert some of the principles in our life without actually living the lifestyle himself. You can’t live one way and preach the opposite. It really confuses people and as a kid I wasn’t too dumb to notice.

In my early teens I didn’t show any interest in studying with Jehovah Witnesses but I was interested in attending church with my 2nd family across the street. My dad constantly expressed his annoyance with the parents of my friends and how they were hypocrites. He passed judgment on their parenting. He referred to them as “hypochristians.” During that time, I wanted to do ANYTHING that my dad disagreed with. He had something to say about the Christians across the street who were hypocrites?? I am assuming he forgot what was going on in our house.

By putting his foot down, giving me absolutions and talking disrespectfully about people I cared about, he inspired me to study everything he didn’t want me to.

I actually attended church with my friends and spent considerable time in bible school so I felt confident I could knowledgably defend my decision to attend this non-denominational Christian church rather than study with a Jehovah Witness. When I was 15 I decided to get baptized. I was inspired one night while spending time with this family with a “Leave it to Beaver” appearance. I felt a part of something “normal.” Mom and her daughters were all BFF’s. This was awesome! This was what life was about. I’m going to go all in, accepting Jesus as my savior, become part of the church and part of the family. It’s going to be great…not so much.

When I got baptized, I invited my dad to come even though he had nothing to do with church or my church family. He refused to attend because he had his own ideas of what religion I should subscribe to. He didn’t believe that I fully understood what I was doing even though I’d been attending the church fairly regularly for over a year and actively attending bible study. He didn’t ask me any questions about what my reasons were but he told me that my reasons were wrong. He still has no idea about my first-hand experience with religion or how extensively I’ve studied the bible but I allow him to discount my knowledge most of the time without arguing. It’s not worth it because, to him I will always be wrong on this topic no matter how many times I’m not wrong. It’s just the way it is.

It all felt so functional to me compared to my home life. As a young person, I couldn’t identify the underlying issues until they were right in front of me. I still disagree with the way my dad chose to handle my interest in religion, especially because it was so hypocritical in nature. What I will say is that I can look back and appreciate his position on what was going on in their family as it related to their daughters and their interaction with boys. It disturbed him and rightfully so.

My friend met a man at church that she fell head over heels with when we were 13. The man was 24. He was new to the church and was living with the preacher after a tragic family history that left him alone. I wasn’t boy crazy in high school. I think that’s mostly because my responsibilities didn’t leave me much time for boys. I am sure my being overweight impacted my self-esteem too. I never put myself out there. In fact, most of my friends were male and I never considered dating them. I don’t think they ever saw me that way either. Even if I was boy crazy, that’s not something that was going to fly in my dad’s house. I can’t imagine my dad would have allowed me to have a ”boyfriend” at 13, much less an adult man from church in his 20’s. Her parents were the exact opposite! They encouraged the relationship. Her mom used to giggle like a little girl and bounce on the bed, teasing my friend about him and how cute her boyfriend was. I remember being shocked by that. My dad definitely had an opinion too.

In 8th grade I didn’t spend much time with her because most of her free time went to her new boyfriend from church. He was at their house every day after work or school and spent the weekends with her family. He slept there most nights in fact. He just blended into their daily family routine. I would talk to her on occasion when she would confide in me the details of their physical relationship which her parents were oblivious to. It was as if they believed that because he was a church guy, he would never dream of having pre-marital sex with their underage daughter. I remember always being puzzled by the chosen ignorance. Sometime in the summer before our 9th grade year, they were caught having sex. I believe a miscarried pregnancy revealed the truth but I could be fuzzy on that detail. It’s been years. Regardless, it turned into a huge family drama and I remember being shocked that they were shocked at these two having a physical relationship. The man spent the night at their house every night for fuck’s sake!

The parents demanded that the couple break up (after allowing them to date for more than a year). There were threats and all the upset that goes along with it. None of that changed that these 2 were already attached so they started seeing each other secretly. During this time, my friend was confiding in me about the details. She was in a lot of trouble at home and kept on a pretty tight leash for much of our 9th grade year. Eventually, it was impossible to keep the 2 apart and they were given an ultimatum to get married because the idea of them having pre-marital sex was too big of a sin to bear! So, he married her. I was 15 and planning a full wedding for my closest friend. So weird.

We handmade all the centerpieces, rolled every piece of meat for the tray and stabbed a toothpick in every square of cheese but don’t think for a second that it wasn’t odd to me that my 15 year old friend was marrying a man from church who was 11 years her senior and dropping out of high school to do it. This was all with her parents blessing. In fact, I went with them to the courthouse the day her parents signed the legal paperwork to allow it. This was the same family I was going to church with because they give me a sense of “normal.”

The wedding came and went. She dropped out of school in our sophomore year so they could move to Southern California to live happily ever after. She got pregnant right away. She spent her pregnancy in Southern California but came back home to have her baby. I mentioned earlier, this family is socially tight. She came home so her mom could be there to help raise the baby. When he was just under a year old, the reality of the situation set in. She started to rebel and with a vengeance.

She was always promiscuous and fooling around with boys in our social circle from school. When they got married and moved away no one heard from her. She moved back and had her first baby. When he was nearly a year old, she started leaving him with her parents often and made excuses to her husband to get out of the house to go party. She was sexually involved with multiple boys within extended social circles. It was almost like a competition for her. If there was a new guy in the room, she was going to sleep with him or get his attention in some way. She had a habit of sleeping with other girls boyfriends and did not limit her choices to the boys that her friends were into. She had a long term sexual relationship with a homeless guy who lived in his van. He was a friend (he was only a couple years older than us). That’s a different story. I’m not kidding about their relationship, though. Her standards weren’t very high. Her parents knew she was sleeping with a homeless guy and they lived in denial about the reality of it all. She liked drugs and drinking. We all did but she liked to play the role of the drunk and blacked out girl who needed constant attention. Drinking with her meant being a babysitter. She was wild and she always hid it from her parents (in plain sight). She often went out to meet up with different boys and lied about where she was. She would come home with hickeys on her neck that she could not hide and instead of being honest, she told her mom that she and I were wrestling and I pinned her down and put a hickey on her neck to be funny.

Her mom confronted me about said hickey. Her mom gave me a lecture once about how sucking on girls necks would mean that I was a lesbian. Then I got a line of questioning about whether or not I was a lesbian. Then I was counselled on how homosexuality was wrong. I never just came out and said that my friend was lying. Why bother? They believed her ridiculous stories no matter what I said.

I never looked at her parents the same after watching them see their daughter through her Sunday dress rather than face the truth about her. I could see exactly what was happening. They had 3 daughters. 2 of them were married off to older men in church. They had a very “Leave it to Beaver” appearance but the circumstances were unusual. In hindsight, the parents got married in high school and had a baby their senior year, then 2 after that and are still married today, over 40 years later. Same with the grandparents; married very young and for life. This is their “normal.”

To me, it’s insane that a woman who just married off her 15 year old daughter to a 26 year old man was lecturing me about how homosexuality is not ok because of a hickey that I never gave? Omg! Her daughter was a high school drop out with a husband who was 26 and they just made her a grandmother at 35. Why are we worried about a hickey and if I like girls? Talk about deflection.

So, it’s ok to get married at 15 to a grown man, have babies and drop out of school as long as you go to church 3 times a week? I was working, going to school and trying to have a better life. I was not having sex with one boy, much less 3. I definitely wasn’t lying to people about unexplained hickeys but my church attendance was down so I was asked to move out. Never mind the behavior of your daughter because she makes her church attendance quota.

Eventually, she had a second baby and her fairytale marriage crumbled like a powdered donut. She couldn’t stay home for more than one night at a time and both her babies were always with the grandparents or their dad. During this time she started hanging out at my apartment. This was the apartment I lived in prior to moving to Washington. This is about the time I introduced her to my circle of friends. You all know how that ended up.

I chose to maintain a friendship with a person who lied and cheated and the consequence was that she eventually treated me the way she’d been treating other people the entire time I’d known her. I stood by her through marriage, the birth of 2 babies, divorce and 10 years of shenanigans but I was not immune. I chose to introduce that poison to my group of friends. I knew who I was dealing with and I gave her too much credit. Silly me.

I’ve grown tremendously over this. I realized that I spent my childhood seeking what society might consider “normal” and I attached myself to it. What appeared to be “normal” was a cluster-fuck of dysfunction wrapped up in a pretty bow because they were a typical American church family and the parents were still married. They had dysfunction in their household too. It just looked prettier than ours because the house was nicer, the grass was greener and their church had all the answers.

Meanwhile, my dad was right about the oddity of their family dynamic but in my eyes he was equally guilty. He was calling Christians hypocrites for living a lifestyle other than what the bible teaches. I suppose he didn’t realize that he was being a hypocrite for judging them for their lifestyle and choice of religion when his own life was in conflict. What I witnessed was my dad judging someone who was living no better or worse than him. They just sinned differently. I witnessed my dad, a “non-Christian” trying to force his understanding of Christianity on me when the only thing he practiced religiously was smoking weed and playing blackjack. How was I supposed to take that seriously? Remember the commercial in the 80’s on the anti-drug campaign when the kid gets caught smoking weed and the dad confronts him by asking where he got it from. The kid responded with, “I learned it by watching you, alright!”? Yea, I was that kid.

On the opposing side, I witnessed 2 parents choosing to believe that because they were a church family, their daughter wasn’t completely out of control. The denial led to so much pain in the long run because they just kept going to church and enforcing attendance. Who cares that she was still high on pills from the night before? She was in a pretty Sunday outfit so it appeared to be “normal” to anyone who was paying attention to the surface.

I knew her well and I think she grew up so fast, was encouraged to settle down with a man she had a crush on at 13. She started having babies before she ever finished school and it was encouraged. I think she did all that to fit in the pretty box of Christianity her family envisioned for her. I think she outgrew that box and went crazy any chance she got. What do I know? She only confided in me for 10 years.

I know this… my dad’s lifestyle was not in line with any church. The family I was close to had an abundance of conflict as well. Personally? I was at peace with working, going to school and being true to myself without the conflict or trying to uphold a “Christian” identity. I drank with my friends. I did my share of drugs. I was no angel. I can live with those choices because I supported myself. I was not a liar, a cheater and I was loyal to a fault. I have always been true to myself and accepted the consequences, good and bad.

Over the years I’ve researched different religions, attended multiple churches and respectfully worshipped with many people of many faiths, I have decided for myself (and no one else) that no one has all the answers and neither do I. I don’t need them. I’m not excited about heaven and I am not afraid of hell. I definitely do not need organized religion. I am definitely more connected to science. I choose to continue to focus on living right and doing right by my fellow human rather than arguing the validity of the bible and setting a lifestyle standard based on it. The truth is, no one really knows for sure but everyone wants to be right. Everyone wants to insist they read the right version of the bible. Who cares? I just want to make the most of this life and treasure every moment along the way because the only guarantee I have is this very moment. If that’s not ok with Jesus, Christians or anyone else, I can live with that.

I understand various beliefs. I appreciate that religion fulfills something deeply personal to many people. I guess I just long for the day when people live by the words of Jesus for themselves rather than judging others in Jesus name. I long for the day when people who claim to be Christians start to act like Christians and stop holding people accountable in life strictly by the number of times they appear in church. Praying before dinner, attending weekly services and leaving your contribution in the collection plate is only the start.

Today, I am a comfortable agnostic, meaning, I’ve read the bible and studied enough to know that isn’t the answer to it all and not one world religion is going to change that. My dad is now an Elder Jehovah Witness who emulates the lifestyle. He converted when I was in my early 20’s. We still strongly disagree on religion. It’s the one subject that still divides us. Regardless of my disagreement of his chosen faith, I deeply respect the peace it brings to his life as an individual and I am grateful he found inner peace after years of torment.

I can’t speak for the family I grew up with. We reconnected on social media several years later but it’s never been the same. I have seen pictures of the “babies” who are now all grown and when I see them, it makes me sad because I know they will never know me. They will never know how much I was a part of their early life or what a privilege it was to love them and watch Barney with them. I will always have a love for the youngest sister and appreciate that she kept in contact with me over the years on a minimal basis to maintain our friendship. Her family came first and I would never expect anything else. Deep down, I know they know the truth and I don’t doubt there is much regret on their part in this whole situation. I wish they would have listened to me when we were 15. I wish my friends would have given me more credit when we were 21. In my life, praying about it never took me anywhere so I took action instead.

I got the hell out of California. My previous bad decisions were not going to define me. So, off to Washington I went… again. I only knew one thing; I was NOT going back to an office job. I wanted to do something more fun!

Are you reading my blog for the first time? You can catch up on my story by following the links below:

When a Ginger Snaps

Childhood, What’s That?

Someone Forgot to Tell Me About College

To Parent or Not to Parent

Your Kids Are Watching, Remember? Divorce and Co-Parenting

19 Years Old and Free

Going Back to Cali…



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