Wednesday, November 16, 2011

I beg your pardon?

Today's NaBloPoMo prompt asks us to write about the moment we leave childhood and enter adulthood.  I don't know that there was a particular "moment" for me.  It was more of a process.  I do remember a moment when I was maybe 9 or 10 years old and realized that I could probably be anywhere in my little hometown and be able to find my way back to my house. 

But adulthood, I guess, is often about a loss of innocence, and I'm reminded of the disturbing revelations coming out of Penn State.  MissKris recently blogged about a personal experience of hers, and I have heard similar accounts from others. 

Several years ago, I wrote about a particular situation I found myself in while collecting donations for a high school band trip.  In short (pun intended?) A "family man" had answered the door, and while his friendly wife made out a check for the band, he proceeded to try to impress me with what was underneath his bathrobe.

I was not all that innocent, though.  I was probably 15 or 16 years old,  so it wasn't particularly traumatic.  I just thought him a pig and felt sorry for his wife and the two kids that were in the next room watching cartoons.  For their sakes, I didn't say anything to Mr. Jackoff.

Another time, at about the same age, I was at my job as a hotel restaurant busgirl.  One of my duties was to run room service. 

I took a hamburger to this man - as I recall, he was a truck driver.   He asked me to stay for $200.  Him, I did feel a little sorry for.  He was still a pig, but I felt a little sorry for him.  How pathetic. 

I hope that entering into adulthood is mainly a process , and not one defining loss-of-innocence or loss-of-protection-and-nurturing moment.  But I know it doesn't always work out that way. 

Yesterday's POD was Marion Jones, in going with the "running" theme.  Let it be known that I have just as many Olympic medals as she does.

Today, I chose Tom Cruise's character from "Risky Business" - the guy somewhere between childhood and adulthood.  I thought his expression is probably similar to the ones I had when dealing with Mr. Band Donation and Mr. Truck Driver. 


terri said...

I don't remember specific incidents, only a particular time frame. I remember being in 4th grade, around ten years old. I felt confident and carefree. I liked other kids and felt liked back. I didn't worry what other people thought of me. By the following school year, I had lost my sense of self-confidence and began to worry ... about everything. I think that was the start of it for me.

Guano said...

Lawnmowers were always heavy.
Then one summer, I could push the lawnmower like it was nuthin'.
That winter, shoveling snow was nuthin', too.

Rebecca S. said...

When I was a kid I looked, and dressed like a boy. I had short hair, but pierced ears. One day, when I was 12 I walked up to one of the salesladies at Woolworth's and asked her for the bathroom key. She paused..."Would that be for...the...ladies?" It was at that point that I knew it was time to embrace my feminine side and I let my mom buy me a flowered blouse that fall for school. It just suddenly mattered to me how people perceived me. Sigh. We had some creeps in our neighbourhood too. One man used to answer the door in a tube top - around his hips. Yuck.

Anita said...

I suppose we're all created with safety mechanisms - to keep us "somewhat" unaware of how bad and/or painful things are that we encounter in life. It's the hindsight that brings it to the surface.

As the child of divorced parents, I suppose seeing things that led up to the divorse are the things that matured me, yet probably caused some harm too. I was between 9 and 11 during the separation and divorce.

I tell my kids that whatever enters their brains - the images, etc. - never go away; that if they have any control over it, to do just that - control it.

I'll have to go over to MissKris's blog.