My friend says that he was grandfathered into all those house parties back in the day because of his cousin, who was very outgoing. I laughed my ass off! His cousin lived next door to me, and I got to tag along with her so I was ‘in’ too, by default. He says he was lame in high school – he wasn’t. If he was lame, I was lamer, socially awkward. Neither of us were the dynamic outgoing types. I was introspective, neurotic and insecure. Yay! I’m not being down on myself – I just was so out of it and I knew it. It threw me into a state of confusion. I would think “These are the rules? Holy shit – how’m I supposed to keep up with all this?” You know teenagers with all their codes and rules. So I was stunned quiet ‘till I discovered liquor. I was a weirdo and a free spirit who didn’t have an outlet or other weirdos to hang out with. I think my childhood disease had a lot to do with alienating me. It fucked me up physically, took away my confidence. My parents were so young and didn’t know how to handle it. It would have been cool if I could have stayed weird but had the nerve to back it up. But it’s useless to say, if only this was that way, or that was this way… Today I don’t whine about how miserable I was. It’s not like I’m so tough either – let’s just say I had help with that childhood trauma in my early twenties. A group therapy type thing you know.
When I was 14 the brother of the alpha male of the wolf pack, the second lieutenant — he fancied me, so that made me more noticed, I suppose. ‘In’ by default? Haha. The funny thing is that I never really cared to be ‘in’. Those kids who were more at ease, popular, they intrigued me of course, but I really would rather have been left alone. My dad used to make me go out and play with the little kids. “Sandee, it’s not healthy to stay in your room – what the fuck’s wrong with you!” No, he didn’t say that last part. All I wanted was to listen to AM radio on the window sill (all those Bread songs from the 70s), write stories, read and play with my dolls. Why wouldn’t those damn kids yelling out the window for me to come out and play just leave me alone?! They’re all the reason I became an alcoholic! But seriously, [mocky voice] if I hadn’t had these experiences when I was a child I wouldn’t be the person I am today – blech.