Monday, June 13, 2011

Public School?

Homeschool ended. My parents did something wrong. As a child I was surprised by this realization, but as an adult I understand we all do things wrong. Technicalities and a general lack of fight in my mom and dad landed my brother and I in public school.

No big deal, right?


Kris and I “grew up” in the city and these people knew it. From the way we walked to the way we talked.

“Go back to Illi'noise’ you damn yankee!”

The deep-rooted hatred behind the insult didn’t register until I was much older, but the insult itself . . . that hurt. Imagine being told to go back somewhere you never knew. Somewhere you were born and had family, but had no sense of home. Texas was my home. I was six months old when we moved there.

Of course, I was more focused on pointing out Illinois is not pronounced Illi'noise'. My constant editing of everything only brought more teasing.

Insults are common amongst children, but things at the dilapidated trailer weren’t going so well either. Dad lost his job. Mom had to find work to help put food on the table. Over the course of a few months I went from having an amazing childhood to having nothing.

The cliché all clouds have a silver lining applied to me in 1988 because that was the year I discovered I love reading and I love writing. I hoarded Babysitter Club novellas in my nightstand. Every day after school I’d sneak a few pages of reading in and when I’d finish a book, I’d grab my spiral notebook and write. Most of my stories were illegible at best, but it was the creativity I enjoyed. The release of all emotion inside me. It’s what I still love.

Did I ever finish one of my novels? No. But I wrote a lot of short stories about cats and dogs and whatever else came to mind. A few stories made me proud enough to take to school and read aloud in class.

If only someone had recognized the energy, the passion I had for writing then and pointed me in the right direction . . . how many books would I have written by now?

I don’t blame anyone. Not my parents. Not the teasing kids who didn’t know any better. Not myself. Everyone does something wrong. And if things are meant to be, they will be. I’m smiling now because I’m writing and it still makes me happy.


  1. I know very few people who were not teased in school. I didn't live down "smelly Mel" until the tenth grade. Although i couldn't imagine the ridicule my older three kids recieved when they moved to Canada. The hatred the Canadians have for "outlanders" is brutal. twelve years gone, it hasn't changed much. The tears my daughter shed breaks my heart.

    I complain that I had a hard childhood, though i realize my life was cake compared to most. My writing came to me as recurring dreams and nightmares. Until I wrote them down they continued to haunt me. I thought it an omen. Without those lousy times and the pain that was born of it, I know I would not have the love of and aptitude for writing, and though its hard, I can't imagine my life without writing.

    Great post Krystal! Thank you for sharing.


  2. You've finished one of those novels NOW! Can't wait to find out what lucky publisher picks it up. Meanwhile, it's so cool learning about you through your blogs!

  3. Oh yeah AND I wrote the last sentence to novel number 2 today.

    I'm glad you enjoy my history guys. Sometimes I wonder if it's not boring. :-)

  4. Ken/Dad7/18/2011

    Things always have a Reason, a Time, a Place and a Purpose. Hard times come to make the good times gooder. Problems always come so they can be solved. Why did this or why did that happen the way it did? Don't know! We are like a lump of clay on a potters wheel waiting to be turned into a beautiful vessel to be used by the Master. The lines in the pot that reflect light in that very special way are from the RTPP. The RTPP in our lives has made us all what we are today

  5. Yes, Dad, they did. Which is why every one of my stories ends on a positive. There was pain. There was hurt. But all that pain and hurt made me who I am today.


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