I actually knew this girl. I knew lots of girls similar with challenging childhoods. Hundreds of girls.
Girls like her have a harder place to succeed from. These teens come from all race and zip code. What they shared was their cyclic life, raised generations deep in a void mindset.
I think that when you see that spark of possibility, of hope and see that they truly want to break free and not be in this, you gain more hope, too.
I think of the characters like Julia Garner as Ruth in Ozark. Emmy and Shanola’s as Fiona and V on Shameless. These raw, authentic women keep fighting. Like phoneix who rise from the ashes each and every time because they are fighters and it’s all they know. They’re too smart to let the cycle continue, protect the children as much they can be a downright force when they’re confidence kicks in.
So this girl I once knew – please know I’m not defending a murderer, nor am I minimizing this violence – absolutely not. When I briefly knew her, she was a kid. She was actually a teenager, but when I looked in her eyes, I saw a kid. She was a challenge, too. She could tell you stories that had to be some of the saddest expereinces you would believe. Every girl had them. The details may have been different but the end results of what was left in the aftermath were similar. I’m sure alot of guys have them too. It’s time to let it out.
For this girl, for as sad you could feel one moment, you were ready to kick her out for the way she would run her mouth.
You know, I always thank God that I at least had my young years in a bubble of normal, innocent, melancholy, safe childhood filled with happy parents, grandparents and whole family trees. Reunions every year were five miles up the hill. We had neighborhood pals like Goonies with a splash of Stand By Me and an occasional Sandlot.
Yes, before fracking, heroin, opioids, government corruption (Yes, this CEO of $4500 overdose injections is their Governor, Joe Manchin’s daughter. Coincidence?) unrecoverable poverty, growing up in the Ohio Valley was probably the best thing ever.
Beech Bottom, West Virginia was. The. Shit.
And it should be again. If I ever get myself together to form enough capital to launch a few slam dunk businesses, I’ve got a multi-million dollar one for Wellsburg… just sayin’. (Get me a grant)
Back to my point.
All the augmented realities I had to mind train myself to overcome and use to my advantage as if a superpower happened in formative years, but not the foundational ones.
I don’t know how to know what it’s like to have had bad shit happen from day one. And it’s not necessarily the parents’ fault either cause it goes back and back and back. At that point, you just want to scream and say Stop the madness!!!!
Do you know what I imagine it must be like? I imagine that when you’re growing up and all this bad stuff is happening and you’ve almost become numb, as a child, to the anxiety, fear, shame, pain, disappointments, <add any other emotion that sucks here> and as your limited education is developing and your exposure to media, social, and movies … you naturally start to connect the dots.
You don’t want this, you hate this, and yet the only people you see breaking out of it do so through money. You can buy your way out. Whatever it takes to get the money to make life easier.
That’s not it. I mean, yes, it’s part of it – you need money to do things. I need money to launch businesses that improve the lives of others. But that doesn’t come easy until you invest in yourself as the company first.
Education – and I’m not talking just books and school. I mean life education – the Rachel Hollis and Super Soul Sundays and authentic testimonials from people like them that made their lives better when they realized freedom can’t be a zip code until you’ve allowed it to be a mindset.
If you can retrain your mind through continuous workouts of positivity and meditation and prayer amongst many other things, and have solid protection from the triggers that threaten your new education.
We need to fix this. Fund this. Because the reasons why I love Ruth, Fiona and V is because they are too brilliant in their fight to confidence street while constantly fighting every roadblock coming at them.
It makes me think of those nail-biting stressful movie moments of relentless car chases or mega house wars on Game of Thrones.
At the end of the day, some succeed, meaning they have normalcy and balance and find joy, gratitude, and grace every now and then. They keep those memory demons at bay for mind training drills later. It’s a journey, after all.
I don’t know the circumstances of this murder. I didn’t do any research and I do not know how she ended up in Mississippi or stabbing a boyfriend to death.
I’m just thinking about the kid I knew that had quite a mouth and seemed to always be in trouble for legit stuff I didn’t witness but had to follow through on from shift changes. She’d admit it.
I knew she could go one way, or another and depending on the situation, it could be either. I just hoped she didn’t end up a teen and pregnant someday. For most girls, that’s the blessing that ends up making the fight to get out much more, let’s say, dynamic.
Our system isn’t set up to support teen girls or the situation they are in. It needs to be revamped. I have ideas and am hoping to talk to my state rep about that to see what I can get started. I got a change made in Iowa in 1994. It’s about time I try again.
Since I haven’t read into the public info about this case, I have no idea what the motive was and therefore, you killed a guy with a knife and got caught doing it. That’s disappointing. There are other ways. Even though we watch shows daily where it’s justified. That worries me. It’s a debate I don’t want to get in to. Just a fact to mention.
I often wonder if she remembers ever knowing me that long ago. I didn’t really ever get into any of my experiences when I worked with teen girls as a barely adult myself. I just had a couple of years on them. I also think that sharing any details of myself would be generic, like playing confessions for street cred stupid.
What I think it was, was when I did tell them how you can get over stuff, and analogies of other life things to get them to understand what I was trying to say, they knew it was authentic. I meant it cause I believed it to work because I did it myself.
Not why I did it, but that I did it and it works. I dare you.
I remember she at least listened, and seemed to genuinely like when I was around.
I think some staff resented that because they came in assuming I was too easy on them because the journal was light and most had a great 14 hour shift, but the ones who worked with me saw that I didn’t cut corners or make passes, I decided what was poor coping skills versus deliberate acting out and addressed it accordingly.
Some people truly have to learn how to chill when hitting a low tolerance threshold of frustration and no way to express it positively. Now, keep in mind – you never hurt yourself, others or property. You do that, and we aren’t talking – you’re out.
But I’ll debate you. I’ll push back. If you win your point, I’ll give you credit and talk about how to present it better next time. If I win – sit down and stop it.
Otherwise, let’s be normal and do normal stuff together so we can learn new stuff we are interested in.
In her case, and not seeing her in almost 25 years, I hope there’s more to the story. That could’ve been me once. Ok, twice but the same person. It wasn’t and I am thankful because I did everything I could to never be in the situation.
But I had people.
Does she? I don’t know.
Did she turn into a villain and like Nike…..Just do it?
Don’t know. In these cyclic generations of poverty and abuse, you’re either Ruth and Wyatt or her horrible dad Cade.
Just like Forrest says, “That’s all I have to say about that”.
Stay tuned. Thanks for reading!