I heard you and your family outside in the backyard today. I was stuck on my couch all day feeling like shit. I lifted my head long enough to peek out my window into the back yard we share. You all were out there. Having a little family barbecue. Your mom and dad were sitting at the table together. Your little sister was bouncing around a bit, and she seemed pretty happy. Your back was to me, and you were coloring on the walkway in pastel chalk.
At first I was happy for you. You all seemed like such a normal little family. Like a family that didn't scream at each other in the middle of the night every fucking night. For some reason, I just kept watching. I noticed that although your parents were sitting next to each other, they certainly weren't talking. Your mom was staring vacantly into the neighbor's yard. Your dad was tapping his foot impatiently, as if he couldn't WAIT to get the fuck away from her. Your little sister was acting pretty normal. And so were you. you were wearing a cute little green dress with purple stripes. And you were drawing pictures of a little girl wearing a little green dress with purple stripes. And the little chalk girl had a big frowney face. And on her little chalk face were little chalk tears.
Sweetie, that was the saddest thing I'd ever seen. You don't deserve that. I am so sorry. Here are some things that I really want you to know.
1. Honey, your dad is a fucking hick. Really. He's disgusting. There's a reason your mom left him, (even though she took him back). He's an asshole. Just as I was coming back from the store today, he came outside and asked if he could talk to me for a second. I stopped and listened as he apologized for the other night when there was glass breaking, you and your sister crying and he was screaming at your mom. Stupidly, I had actually gone downstairs to intervene. I only did it because I heard you crying. So anyway, your dad apologized. And here's why your dad's an asshole: He said "these things happen, you know?" Well, you know what, honey? No they don't. Not always. And certainly they shouldn't happen in front of you. You don't deserve that. You deserve to have parents who care so much about you that no matter how mad they get, they put it fucking aside. Don't get me wrong. I'm not a parenting expert. I don't have kids. But I have parents. And they got divorced, and they had rocky times. But they NEVER fought in front of me. Why? Because not scaring me was more important than any ugly thing they could possibly scream at each other in front of me. You deserve that. I'm sorry you don't get it.
2. Your mom, honey... well, she's kind of a harpy. And shrill as all get-out. I know this because the sound of her screaming "Get a fucking job you son of a bitch bastard" wakes me up at least twice a week. I could live with that, if I didn't hear you crying, too. ALSO, your mom is bad for yelling at you the way she yells at you. WHO CARES that you didn't pick up all your toys? In the grand scheme of things, Honey, you not picking up your toys, doesn't fucking matter. And here's what really sucks about how she screams at you: She won't remember each and every time she screamed at your throughout your childhood, but I bet you will. She might even later forget altogether that she EVER screamed at you. But you will remember. It's not fair. I hope that when you get older, you can put this into perspective, and realize that's she's the bad one. Not you.
3. Sweetie, it won't always be like this. Someday, you'll be old enough to drink.
4. I don't think your parents think much of themselves. And I don't think they think much of you. It's a shame, because you are a beautiful and precious and funny little person. TRUST ME, when you are older, people will see you for the wonderful extraordinary and sweet person you are. And, worst case scenario, you end up a stripper, you will ROCK that stripper pole like its never been rocked before. I promise you that.
5. I think your parents give your little sister way more positive attention than they give you. I'm sorry for that. But here's something I know. That girl has cankles in her future. Bad ones. You're going to be fine.
6. I don't imagine you are going to live here for long. It's a little too small for your family. And you are just young enough that you probably won't remember me. But I need to tell you that I will never forget you, and your crying chalk self. And for the rest of your life, I will be rooting for you. And I will always hope your future chalk drawings only have smiley faces.