Chosen Family

Posted: August 16, 2012 in Bipolar
Tags: ,

There is the family you’re born into and the one that you pick. This post is about my family of friends. When my blood turned against me, my friends picked up the slack. Everyone needs a back-up plan.

Pam, my black sister, never lost her absurd nature, eternal smile and opinionated wit. She, plainly and shamelessly, told me what time it was and ordered me to get a watch! At times, I hated her. Other times, I really hated her!

Still, I always loved and respected her. When she died, the witness to crazy teen me to married woman me was evicted from my life. Pretty shitty of you, Pam. As I type this, I gaze up to a lovely portrait of myself, my sister Carmen and Pam. Hell of a smile, she had.

Then there was my Marengo family. Every last one of them were role-playing freaks and lived with me! Jason, better friend than boyfriend, was the ring leader. Clarence, his second job was playing ‘comedic death’ via a black trench coat. Tysen, oh yeah, was a giant, smelly bear who knew everything.

And Kristen, AKA Kris and Tits, was Ty’s girl. She was 4 foot nothing, gigantic boobs and owner of a childlike face. I use to tell her that she was a pedophile’s wet dream. She looked 10 yrs old and was always carded.

When late teens and 20 somethings get together in an old house, people move in and out all the time.  There was zero censorship as well. Such an environment made for awesome trash talking!

One day, Jason and I were playing ‘The Dozens’ and Ty was the judge. After being faced with a zinger, Ty turns to me and asked if I’m done. With a comedic explosion on my face, I called Jason a ‘Nigger’!

Ty eyes pop out, he chokes a bit then smiles. Trying to catch his breath, he says “Damn, girl! That’s it. Moni wins”.  Jason and Ty are, of course, black. I never used that word before, which made it all the more impressive.

All my friends from Marengo would gladly maim or kill anyone for me, if warranted. Fortunately, they never had to. After a yuppie ex-boyfriend lost his mind and tried to choke me, he called me from jail and begged me not to press charges.

I actually considered it. Jason calmly told me that if I didn’t press charges, he wanted me gone forever from his house and life. It was a good ultimatum. The charges were pressed.

Another time, something set me off and I got violently physical with Jason. He was very proficient in martial arts, but didn’t use it on me.  In the end, I got suicidal and was committed for a few days.

I was accepted back to my Marengo family, no strings attached.  Acceptance, above all else, made me love my motley crew. Everyone had afflictions, but none were rejected from the circle.

We were stupid, crazy, happy, unhappy, broke and flush all the time. I was blessed and cursed with roommates possessing nose-attacking body odor, carpet hairy backs, applause inducing boink sessions, yummy Italian (sort of) food and science projects in the frig.

There were limits, of course. No sex offenders, druggies, alcoholics or woman beaters allowed in the circle. Life with my Marengo family was good and bad.

I left that loveable flop house to be with my husband. It was a good choice that nearly broke my heart. That miserable 3 bedroom Casa de Locura (Crazy House)  sheltered me, encased me and released me.

That house witnessed love, lunacy, tragedy and stupidity. I left it, cried and moved on.  Whoever says they’re adults in their 20’s is a liar. None of us knew shit back then. You’re just young enough to recover from the mistakes.


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