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A Brief Look At My Childhood

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A Brief Look At My Childhood

One day it was plain to see why our family moved from Everett. We had a nice apartment on Adams Street, it was ok. I was eight years old in 1993, a lot happened in the world, but that’s not important. What was important was my dad had been gone for three years now and me and mom were struggling. Sure the apartment was nice and all, but it was shabby and the night time parties my mom would throw could not support the fifteen to twenty people that stuffed into it like sardines in a tin. I was not thrilled that at night time I’d have the hardest time getting to sleep and then be forced out at quarter-of-six in the morning. What was even more lame is the fact that I waited at the bus stop twenty minutes, when to me at eight, that’s ten minutes more of sleep I should be getting. As Wideman said, “Nothing like that was possible on the other side.” (700) To me that meant that even though there were many things I did not like in my life, or thought was different than other kids my age, it was not comparable as a lot of kids my age dealt with and went through similar things.

I sometimes wonder why I had a lot of friends in elementary school. I mean don’t get me wrong it was nice, but I was not always the friendliest person alive. I had a lot of angst, angst I realized when I was older was normal eight year old things to be concerned about and stress about. I came off as rude and not someone who thought before he spoke. Kids still liked me and wanted to be my friend. I don’t take much time to look back on that time in my life, for some reason I still believe that it was not like other kids. It must be important to me if I have such strong feelings. However one of the things that I have realized as time has gone on it was not who I was friends with, it was where I lived. Biddeford, Maine certainly is a place where it is overpopulated and crowded. It was once a small mill town that never thought in a million years it would eventually end up as the place where section eight and run-down-apartments were prominent. It was peaceful, the “brother” to Saco, and close enough to New Hampshire and other key points of Southern Maine. Now I’m not going to bore you with any kind of history lesson on York County or anything, but it interesting to remember that you can tell, even if you go to Biddeford for an hour that it was not designed to be populated the way it is. I guess that why some people, and as wrong as it is, think that Biddeford is some kind of ghetto. To me, a ghetto symbolizes a struggle and not just cramped space. Shit, one time I was thinking about where not to raise a family and that town came up. I laugh even saying the word “Biddeford” now. I’m a Mass boy at heart, I was born there, lived there until I was dragged (not literally) by the forces beyond myself to good вЂ?ol Biddeford.

Wideman pointed out “My mother had been raised in Homewood. The old Homewood. Her relations with people in that close-knit, homogeneous community were based on trust, mutual respect, common spiritual and material concerns..” (701) This was true of my mother. She grew up in Biddeford and admitted it was much different. My mother and I had a different relationship than most kids and their parents. Emotionally, she was there for me, but physically she wasn’t always. I sometimes dealt with an entire day without seeing her. I knew what to do, I knew what time I had to wake up, when it was time to do homework. I knew also that other kids were getting more attention, and while I had a lot of kids my own age to hang out with, I was not always feeling home. Why the hell would I want to go home when I had so many friends at school. I had kids over my place all the damn time, but to me it didn’t always matter. As a kid, you want that special bond with at least one parent, and my asshole dad left my mother when I was five, so that left me with one parent and I was damned if I were going to strike out. But I’ve been used to that, not to go off topic, getting one chance at things. The community knew who I was in Biddeford, because they saw me a lot, and not always with my mom as any eight year old should have that supervision. At the library, corner stores, hell, even the elevators of businesses I used to infiltrate just to get a ride and smell the smell of being successful. That’s why even to this day its hard sometimes for me to go to businesses, because I remember the smell. The smell of not having a parent there for me when I needed, so I was forced to do my own thing, to make my own path. I want nothing else in this life other than when I have kids not to “give them things I never had” as many people are quick to say but just to be there for them.

I don’t know sometimes I even realized what was going on with things in my own life. My brother was a very big part of who I’d become, but except for the weekends I never really saw him either. That’s because he moved in with his father in Lyman, which is about 40 minutes from Biddeford. He is seven years older than me, and at that time I was just as mature as he was. When my dad left, my brother was the first one to hug me. He even says to this day the look on my face killed him and when he looked at me he saw that face for days. For the next two years my brother and I were as close as we have ever been. Unfortunately, yet fortunately at the same time, we did not talk from the time I was 12 until a few months before I turned 22. A strong family connection that most have and cherish is not something I have. I didn’t have it when I lived with my mother, and I don’t have it now. The day to day process for me has always been turning over a new leaf and starting fresh in the morning. Meaning if I had a terrible day, tomorrow would be better, if I had a great day, tomorrow shall be no different.

Once something, or unfortunately sometimes someone is out of sight out of mind, it is easier to not think about it. Whether it is a person or a place or a thing, it is always easier to not think about it when it isn’t there. That’s why when I left Biddeford at the age of nine, Biddeford never entered my head. I was attending a new school, never talked to any of the friends I had there, and had to become a new person. I lived in the North Deering section of Portland which is filled with houses, and middle-upper class people. It was very different. It was like my prayers were answered to get out of that wanna-be ghetto. Portland was so much nicer even in its smell, the fact that the sun seemed to shine brighter on summer days, the leaves more



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