My Beautiful Wickedness

Me and Horse, on my second birthday
February 9, 2008, 9:04 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

I remember a lot about this birthday. I didn’t want to go down for a nap, but Mom promised that when I got up, I could have dinner, cake and presents. I always got to choose what I wanted to eat for my birthday and what kind of cake I wanted. I always wanted spaghetti with meat sauce and cherry cake with cherry icing (which I now find ickly sweet and gross). Anyhow, when I got up, my brother had returned from school and Dad was also home reading the newspaper at the table.  My mom had woken me and dressed me in a brand-new dress that she had made — it was still a little stiff with starch and I wanted to fuss with the black bows and untie them and retie them, but Mom said I couldn’t do that.  She tried to make me wear itchy tights with ruffles on the butt that scrunched whenever I sat down, but I fussed.  That’s why I’m wearing socks. I also had to wear my shoes indoors because the house was cold (meaning, though I didn’t know it, that they’d been opening and closing the back door putting together my present.

I came in looking for the cake (which I figured would be on the table, which my mother always set very prettily on the days of family ceremony) and so when I hit the kitchen, I was a little confused that the lights were so bright. My parents had just gotten a Super-8 camera that required blinding Klieg lighting and so the kitchen itself (which was white, with white floors and white tile and white formica counters, waxed and polished within an inch of its life) was incandescent. I know we have footage of me blinking and trying to get the blue spots out from my eyes.

Maybe that was why it took me a while to see Horse. Horse — or Rockyhorsierockyhorsierockyhorsiewhoa, which was his full name — would be my best companion for many years. I loved Horse. I rode Horseuntil I was bending the springs, well past my tenth birthday. When my parents’ marriage was on the rocks,when I was a loser in school, whatever was wrong seemed to get better when I hopped on Horse and pretended to ride away. Imagination is a wonderful thing and my imagination as a child was so much bigger and more real than my own life. I read constantly, but if my parents managed to get me to put down the book for a minute, I’d probably go out to the porch and ride Horse. I think my dad began to believe that I was addled and never was going to grow up. (I also played with dolls until I was twelve or thirteen…I just grew up a lot more slowly than other kids my age.).

Not pictured in this one, but pinned to Horse’s rein was a doll my mom made out of the striped pink material of the dress. The doll’s name is Pink. Yes, I still have Pink. (I also have my other early childhood doll, also home-made, named Red. I guess I always did believe in calling things by their right names.)

The cake was good too, in case you were wondering.



2 Comments so far
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There was one of these at my grandma’s house, so it must have been left over from my mother’s tenure. I loved loved loved it.

Comment by Krista

I always wanted one. Always.

Comment by Kathy T.

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