Christmas Village Dream with Katrina
By: My Truong
Sitting in my room with my hot chocolate. The smell of it reminds me of the Christmas Village. Katrina, you told me that you were there a couple days ago and it was beautiful. You’re so lucky! I had always wanted to go to that place at night, seeing the sparkle of light, look at the high tall Christmas tree that I will never get to go. My family alway want to keep me in the house sitting and doing my homework. Come on now, does it look like I'm three? (ugrrrrr). I'm sixteen, maybe not old enough to do wild things but I’m old enough to go see the village with my friends, right?
A sixteen years old girl don't sit home and look at the television, watching Korean drama in bed, whining, and smelling the Christmas season. Look at how beautiful it is outside! Can you see the light sparkling, the smell of snow, the cold air that you breath in? Why do I have to sit here and drink chocolate ? ( silence for a second.) I don't get it. We live in America now. Even if we live in Vietnam at this age, I can do whatever but I guess not. They think it’s dangerous to go out at night. I hate that. It’s like a life in jail.
Wow what you said is not a bad idea Katrina, look at how big that window is. I could still totally fit through that window. Using a long rope, then climbing out to escape, but I don't know how to climb the rope. I could walk slowly downstairs and sneak out the house like you said, but are you sure that my mom wont find out? I don't think that’s safe. Maybe I should just ask them to bring me, but I want to to go with you guys. I’m stuck here with my family. But even when I asked them to bring me they will be like “I don't know the way” or “I’m busy.” See, this is what I hate whenever I asked them. They say they are busy but whenever they ask or should I say whenever they told me to go they can't even wait for five minute so I can finish changing.
Ugrrrrrrr Katrina help me I don't want to stay home anymore (crying). I don't even understand why I have to do this. I can't stand it anymore. Can they ever understand strict parents creates sneaky kids? Yes, maybe I can't go to the village at night or escape the house to sleep over your house but they don't know what I do in school. They told me I shouldn’t have a boyfriend but it looks like that rule doesn't apply to me. I could always find a way to hang out with him. I could always understand they want the best out of me but also making me become like one of those sneaky little girls is not the best out of me. The escape plan is on, but I have a better idea and a safer one too. I will try to ask my mom to let me go to your house for a sleepover and if she agrees, we go from there. (Someone knocks on the door so they stop the talking.)
That scare the crap out of me. I didn't know what to say when she ask me what we were doing in here. Then I saw a bunch of markers on the ground so the plan was that we were doing our project. That came to my mind. Good thing I said that.
Today is April 17,2008, my name is Athena in case I forget my name when I get oder and read my diary, I just turned 12 a few days ago. I was expecting my dad to call me on my birthday, but another year and I didn’t get a call from him again. I called him right before I started to write this diary, he didn’t answer once again, he ignored my call. I always tell my self maybe he is busy working, or is sleeping, I just make things up in my head and try to believe them because it hurts knowing the truth that he is actually ignoring my calls. I can memorize the operating lady that says “I’m sorry but the person that you are trying to reach is not available at this moment please leave a message after the beat” I don’t leave messages no more to my dad because he never receives them he says, I don’t think he knows I’m 12 years old or when is my birthday, because i think he still thinks that I’m that 8 year old girl that use to call him everyday and leave a message to him and then he use to call me back once in two weeks, I always asked him about the message I left him, he says he never gets them, but now I know he does. He lies to me. I always seen my friends in school with their dads playing on the swings, and their dads pushing them. Yesterday I sat on the swings while waiting for my mom to pick me up from school and I sat on the swings imagining him pushing me on the swings. I always wished and still wishing to have my dad to play with me. He comes to visit me, not often as I thought he was. The day he comes to visit me; puts a smile on my face, but then I realize while I’m getting older, that the love I had for my dad, slowly is turning into anger. My dad has a son he is 2 years old, and when I use to go over his house I use to watch him play with his son, I’ll admit it I do get jealous, when i see him playing with his son, I always wonder why he never played like that with me. My mom, I love my mother, she has always been there for me, she tried talking to my dad on how I feel, but my dad doesn't seem interested in it. I act different around him when he comes to visit me now, I still smile but then I think of the times he didn’t answer the phone when I was little, or when he just comes to visit me to give me some money, or take me out to eat or buy me things. Maybe he feels like he can buy me things and everything will be okay, but its not like that. I have feelings, I hope he knows that. I’m not the little girl that use to believe everything he use to say, the lies he said to me. I’m 12 and I have grown, and my mind is understanding a lot of things now. Sometimes I wish my dad would understand the feelings I have, but there is only one problem, if only he would actually sit down and listen to me. Sometimes I feel like no one loves me, no one understands me. I try talking to my mom but she has enough things to worry about. I’m young why am I dealing with this kind of problems at 12 ? I’m suppose to be worrying if my hair is perfect, my nails are painted pretty, but no I don’t have that in mind. I have my dad in mind. Why doesn’t he answer the phone. Im going to try again and call him. (Picks up the phone and dials her dads number and starts to call, Ring Ring Ring). He didn’t answer, I’m not surprised no more. I’m getting use to my dad not answering my phone calls. What upset me the most that he didn’t call me to wish me a happy birthday. I sometimes don’t want to hear from him again, but he is my dad. My mom says, to just give him time, that he is busy working. I gave him enough time, since I was 6 years old and now I’m 12 years old and he still doing the same thing, not picking up the phone. Lying to me. Making excuses up why he couldn’t call me for my birthday. I don’t know if he knows it but I’m getting tired of all his lies, his excuses, soon I’m going to grow older and not think about him, well he could cross my mind, but I’m going to be strong and just ignore him. I’m tired of all this. I should start doing my homework, i had enough of talking about my dad. English, and math homework and my 500 word essay on someone you admire isn’t gonna write it self. If only I had my dad here to write about him. I always wonder if he would be a good person to look up to. I’m never going to find out. I have never felt a love of a father. I wish I did. Sooner or later he is going to come to me and try to talk to me, but as how he did to me was ignore me, then I’ll do the same. I know I will always love my dad, but while the years go on, the anger will be taking over the little love I have for my dad. Well here goes another same old day, with out my dad around. Mom; if you ever find my diary and read this, don’t show this to dad. Its a secret. I love you mom.
Well, I usually start by telling him how much I like his Burlington Coat Factory necktie, or how delicious the cornbread is that his wife made. Honestly, that’s what I want to tell him. It’s what I’m used to, quick and easy, but I get the feeling that it won’t be a loaf of cornbread sitting on his living room table and his necktie will probably be Ralph Lauren or Nautica. We’re standing on this porch two inches from the rest of our lives and the only thing I want to say is… Is this outfit okay? (chuckles) Yea, that’s a question the girl would usually ask. I wasn’t even this nervous when I introduced you to my parents. My mom used to always say “If she can’t use a comb, don’t bring her home” (chuckles). I was surprised at how okay she was with you. All throughout high school I was so afraid to bring home anybody who wasn’t black. I knew my mom would smile in her face, but as soon as we were alone she’d call the whole family and complain about how all the good black men never want a black woman. One day I asked her, Did she ever think that women aren’t categorized by race? Did she ever think that the same human traits aren’t subject to race? I guess her reaction to you today was some type of new understanding she has. Have you ever been with a black guy? I mean I know my family has some issues with race, but you guys get the most hell about having problems with another race. I used to think that women like you were only nice to us black guys in order to stay on societies good side. I thought that, because of my skin color, I was only limited to a certain selection of females. I don’t know if you can understand this, but when I met you it was one of the lowest points in my life. I knew I loved you immediately, and I hated myself. I hated myself because I felt that my skin color was keeping us apart, and at that moment I would’ve done anything to shed my skin so that you might be able to see me for the person I truly was. Amazingly enough, you did. Maybe you get it from your father. (Knocks on the door)
"As we sit here and think about the legacy, and impact she had on us."
What is this? where am I at? This can't be true, I was just home.
Sitting on my favorite red chair next to the window early in the morning, watching the sun rise and the birds start to sing. As I wake up to the sound of my favorite gospel singer Yolanda Adams. I can still hear her sweet voice singing on the radio to the song open up your arms, wow what an amazing talent. I remember eating my favorite meal that day pork chops Mac & cheese, mash potatoes with extra gray. I wish I would have took cousin Sam's advice or more like his warning. "You need to stop eating all those fatty foods before you end up in the hospital cousin, you sure anit getting any younger."
"We have to remember she wouldn't want us to cry, instead she would want us to remember the good times, we had with her."Those two words "good times" bring back so many great memories from my life. I remember meeting my best friend in first grade, the first thing she said to me was "I like your dress, want to be friend’s.” From that day on me and Susan Campbell has been together forever, well I thought. I remember on a hot sunny day my mom was filling my pool with water, and while we waited to take a dip in the pool here comes our neighbors. We decide to play with them only to prove that girls can do anything guys can do. As me and Susan was running from them I trip over her foot and landed straight on my knees. After I realized how much pain I was in, one of the boys noticed my leg was bleeding from almost every angle. After I showed my mother and got clean up I saw a scar. That scar never went any where, it was the only thing that have been with me through my whole life.
"As we are about to lay our beloved wife, mother, and friend in the ground. Is there anyone that would like to say any last words"
This thought of never seeing my family and friends again hurts me to the core. The fact that I get to be with my lord and savior, and don’t have to struggle anymore is worth it. So as I leave this world, but not my memories I realized I have no regrets. I wish I could tell them right now, how much I love and will miss them truly, but life doesn’t work like that. I will be watching over everyone from high above the clouds, and wiping there tears whenever the think of me.
My phone rang, it was my cousin crying, he never did this before so I knew it was serious. He told me that he had just heard about Chrissy, our aunt. I was kinda in shock that he called, of all people, me? We weren’t close. I had to make sure he knew I was there for him. I tried calming him down and I began to tell him everything that had happened so far. I could hear him sniffling as I started talking.. I remember it being so close to summer that I could smell the warm air and hear the ice cream truck driving down my street. Only a few weeks left of school until the summer of my life would be here. It was a Friday and I was excited for the weekend, I took the train home from school that afternoon where my dad picked me up at the train station. I asked my him how my aunts appointment went and I could tell by his reaction to my question wouldn’t have a good answer. As he began to explain to me all the agonizing details I froze. He said that it was terminal cancer meaning that she will die from it. I fired question after question making sure I knew everything. How long is she going to live? was my last question. He waited a while, then told me that less then 5% of people live longer then a year. A year? Only a year? Maybe knowing all the details wasn’t the best idea after all. I didn’t want to cry in front of my dad, I never really cry when I’m around people. A weird sensation goes through my body when people see me cry, I hate it.
I asked my cousin a question to make sure he was still there. You remember when all the Philly people went to the beach for Mothers Day weekend to kinda get away from everything? He replied “Yeah, I remember.” I wasn’t sure how to explain this to him just cause it was a sensitive topic for everyone, but I gave it a shot. “So while we were down at the beach everyone had got Chrissy something special to just show her how much we love and appreciate her. Everyone got her something little like a bracelet, a phone case but when it came to me I had so much more to give. I had wrote her a letter, explaining and telling her every single thing I wanted her to know, but I couldn’t bring myself to give it to her. Instead she just got a boring cheesy card and a necklace from me. The next day I woke up, expecting it to be the same as every other morning but when I got down stairs I knew something was up. The living room was empty, nobody in the kitchen making breakfast. Eventually I realized that everyone was outside. I went out to see what was going on and to my surprised everyone was laughing and joking around with my aunt about losing her hair. We didn’t think it was going to happen this soon so we had to come up with a plan.” My cousin interrupted.. I don’t wanna hear anymore he said. This was a surprise to me but I didn’t argue. We hung up the phone and at that moment I realized that this might not be the summer of my life but it will surely be one that I never forget.
(sad talking to therapist at school) Hi Jen wassup. I have a lot that happened today and that went through my mind.I had a lot of questions that ran though my head.Lets see....were to start... oh ok , I got it. (Dad walking into room flicking on the light) .The normal wake up call.My dad came in to my room babbling on about nothing with still a little white powder under his nose (wipes upper lip) like he always does when he is high. I got up and had to shove him out of my room. I got dressed and when I opened my door he was standing in the hallway just staring at the wall,Just staring at it! Like it was doing tricks or something. Ugh how I hate him so much, But I really don’t want to loose him.
I guess that’s wrong to say that I hate him because he really is the only one that loves me.Sometimes it is hard to tell so I ask myself a lot if he really does love me or does he just tolerate me? He has to love me because he takes care of me, ever since my mom left he was always there.Even though he is using drugs he has still been there at every school even, he was there for every award, and every change that I went though.
Then again i don’t know what to think because he does do drugs. Him doing drugs effects me in away that could never be fixed. I see him do things and say things that can never be taken back. If he really loved me he would never do things that hurt me,and him doing these things hurt me.Its not like he goes to work and does it when i’m not home, no he does it when I get home right in the comfort of our home, yea our home not his.Who does he think he is doing things as big as drugs right in front of me! Now what if i where to go and do the things he does i would be the one who is in the wrong. I would never do it though because see how it effects him and what he does when he is high.
When I do try and talk to him while he is sober. When I try to talk to him he just shuts me up and doesn’t want to listen to what I have to say about it.I understand why he doesn’t want to talk to me because he doesn’t want to hurt me while he is sober.Maybe does what he does because of me,maybe I put him under to much stress.Maybe my dad isn’t hurting me maybe i’m hurting him.
“Ok Ms. Therapist lady. This is what happened, and it’s the truth. I used to lie, but my mom says lying is bad.My mom yelled at me. She yelled “Cas honey did you take your pills.” Yes I yelled back, only I lied, because I really didn’t take my pills. I have to take little blue pills. The doctors say I have to take three every day. My mom says they keep me calm, but I have more fun when I don’t take them.
My mom told me she was taking a nap, and that I shouldn’t let anyone in the house. I went to the door, and told Tommy, Jake and, Max, that my mom was sleeping, so they could come out now. Those guys are my friends...At least they used to be. That doesn’t happen until later though, and my teacher says we are not allowed to skip ahead.
I told them that we should play a game, and they were all on board. That doesn’t mean they were on a train, it means they agreed with me. Tommy said he wanted to be a lion. I told Jake he should be a lizard warrior, and Jack was the evil wizard. I was a super prince, with rocket boots, and a golden swords. Why are you looking at us like that the lion said, only I acted like I didn’t hear him, because he was a lion, and lions don’t talk. You better go run evil wizard I said, holding up my sword. I’m gonna slay you.
I started running towards the wizard, and I hit him with my sword. His eyes got watery and he yelled, at me. Then he wasn’t a wizard anymore, he was just plain old max. Plain old max looked really mad, and he punched me in my arm, and said hey why’d you do that. I fell down onto my green carpet and started crying. I wasn’t really crying though, because I’m brave and brave people never cry. My mom came out of her room, and boy did she look mad, when she saw tommy, jake, and max. She looked like she was gonna yell but then she just shrugged and told us to be quiet.
We watched T.V. for a while. I wanted to watch “Jerry Springer”, but we watched “Spongebob” instead because my mom says that’s what ten year olds watch. I remember because it was the episode with “Mermaid Man, and Barnacle Boy.” My cat ran through the living room and I got a great idea. Let’s play hunt the cat I told my friends. We were all excited, except for Tommy. Max called him a chicken, and we all started flapping our arms and saying chicken, chicken.
Then, I had another great idea. My great idea was that we should play hunt the chicken. The chicken was scared, but we all started moving close to him,really slow. The chicken started running, and it ran into the deep forest. Me and the other hunters, started to chase. The chicken slipped between some trees, and we couldn’t find it, but we did find our weapons room. We all got big swords, and went to look for the chicken some more.We found it climbing towards a cliff, and cornered it. The chicken was clucking, like crazy and it almost sounded like a person was talking, only that can’t be right because chickens can’t talk. I held out my sword, ready to chop off the chicken’s head, and the other hunters started screaming. They kept saying the game was over, and trying to stop me, but I was a brave hunter, and they couldn’t stop me. Just when I went to bring down my sword, Tommy fell out of the window. I dropped the knife I was holding, and my eyes started to water. I was going to cry, because Tommy was my friend and I was afraid he was gonna die. Then I heard Tommy Crying, and screaming, and saying “My leg!, My leg!”. Then I started crying because Tommy was crying, then Jake and, Max started crying too. My mom came out and started saying bad words. She took us to the hospital, and tommy got a cool cast on his leg. He wouldn’t let me sign it, and now his mom won’t let me see him. I can’t see Jake or Max either. I still have plenty of friends though, even if they only come to play when I don’t take my medicine.