I remember a sleep over ages ago. My parents had gone out of town for the night because my sister insisted on taking me overnight. I guess their whole plan focused around the fact that I would be gone for a good 18 hours. Doesn't seem like a long time, but it was eternity for me.
Sissy picked me up from school that day, and I felt like the coolest kid on the block. I had my big sister picking me up in her car!
She had already picked up my full overnight apparel from my parents, and we were on our way to our typical candy store sugar overload. I am not sure who enjoyed those trips more, her or I.
The plan was to sleep over at the condo she was living in at the time. Owned by a family friend who was away for the winter. I didn't care where we were going as long as we were together though. I never got her to myself. But the one perk for me was the jacuzzi in the condo. What 8 year old doesn't want to swim around in a mini indoor pool in the middle of the winter time? I was a fish in the summer months, so when the winter set in and limits were put on swimming by the hours at the local YMCA club I wasn't a happy camper.
But after the candy store, instead of making our way to the condo for our night of manicures, pedicures, and sisterly bonding over ice cream and junk food we started to head towards an area of town I had never been to. And it did not look nice!
Looking back now, I know she was going to cop drugs. But being 8 years old I was just frightened of the unknown and worried about the area, because my parents had always stressed that it was the place the bad people lived. Great right?
As if I couldn't get anymore scared at the moment, just as we are getting to our little corner store destination the car got a flat tire. I freaked out. I was a child, a scared child, and my sister couldn't handle it. She couldn't handle me. She couldn't handle what she was actually doing. Scoring crack with her little sister in the car? How could someone do that with a clear conscious?
A normal person couldn't and wouldn't. But she wasn't normal... she was an addict. Still is just in recovery although I don't think those who were dependent on narcotics at one point in their life should be abusing certain types of prescription medications. Another tale in its own for a later date though.
Eventually a dirty looking, scary, shady gas station attendant changed the tire for her. Only after we were forced to drive on the rim of the flat tire for a mile down the road.
With the donut tire on the car we headed to the condo. By this point I was so far hysterical that nothing short of offering me an entire toy store would calm me down. Put yourself in my shoes as a little kid, you would probably have done the same thing.
The memory is so vivid to me because it was the first, last, and only time my mother allowed her to take me in any type of overnight capacity, until much later in life. Once I was a teen at least.
I was able to play in the jacuzzi tub as promised, but she was more concerned with talking on the phone, and having other people over. I wasn't the priority even though she made it seem like the night would be mine. It always has been that way, but in the following years it became men that came first.
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