It’s 1:30am, I have about 5 hours and 10 minutes before I need to be up, but I can’t fall asleep. So, I’m up. And I’m writing. Because I have been trying to go to sleep since 9pm.
All I can seem to think about are my old memories. Very distinct and exact memories.
I can remember where everything went in my last house – the house where we lived as a family last.
I can still here the way the different doors creaked – I can hear the kitchen door that led out to our Asian patio. The way my mom’s desk looked, the stain on the carpet in the hallway just outside my room. The way the carpet came up just enough to see the green tile in my closet. The way the laundry hamper smelled in the hall. How we organized our freezer and pantry. Potatoes on the bottom shelf, onions too, both in wicker baskets. Those rice and blueberry treats mom would get from Costco. The guest house. How it always seemed to smell of barbecue chicken. The closet, weird coats, how we would go out there just to watch tv. The old cigar box in the guest house garage. The tire swing by the horse pasture, the orange grove, the brick wall, the nut trees by dad’s shop. How the orange trees smelled in the summer, the way snails would gather near the sprinkles, our pool. The second story of dad’s shop, how you could hear rain hitting the tin roof. The old war maps dad hung in his office out there. His big metal work table. The way the old blacktop road would burn my feet, mom’s white porch swing, our pomegranate tree. The lemon tree, the tree house we built with Callie. Mom’s garden. The basil plants. our compost pile. The brick fireplace inside, the big solid wood mantle above it. Dad’s bear hanging in the dining room, my pine piano. Mom’s brown rug. My music rack. The little patio outside the door off our breakfast nook. The lights suspended in there. Tig. The kittens. Our playhouse, and the summer we spent at the house before we moved in, sesame ring pretzels. Too much Febreeze. Mom’s clothes line. When dad worked in Vegas and mom made that bon bon ice cream that the whole block loved. Mom’s fourth of July parties. The vegetable stew she would made during thunderstorms. How we could see the beautiful mountains outside our kitchen window. When mom would wake us up by singing. Getting ready for youth group, that shimmery purple eye shadow I loved. The ivy wallpaper we had in our bathroom, the stone walk-in shower that’s light didn’t work so it was always dark. All the goddamn storage space in there. Our craft closet. Mom’s closet, which was always organized. The little garden outside mom’s bedroom, the wall of windows that were in front of her bed. Her beautiful bathroom, the high windows, tall ceilings, wood and stone everywhere. Our beautiful, expensive, World Market table. The wall of windows in our dining room. How mom would let us make an pillow fort out of the living room during the summer when Lacey and Katie would stay with us. That Thanksgiving when Uncle Winky brought his Brazilian friend, who was probably his boyfriend and we were all just oblivious to how gay he was. Sage and Sonia. Spending summers with the Deitz, their treehouse. Going over there to hang out with Jacob and Nate before any of us were out of the 8th grade. The year Jacob started high school, when he started driving, when he went off to college. When Carson started dating that dude with the weird name – playing in the orange groves outside their house, the palm fans. The mule. Callie’s horses. Going with her to mediation in the hummer, taking her to her dad’s house. Going to see movie’s with her and Melissa, always having diet Dr. Pepper and tootsie rolls. When Melissa would decorate for christmas, and their entire house transformed into a winter wonderland. Ms. Terri’s 15 foot christmas tree, staying out until 1am to help get ready for VBS at Foothill. The red berries. When Mrs. Hengst took her Sunday school class to see Mega Mind and I felt super left out.
Oh my god. Carson and Hayley are both married. Jacob and Nate both have girlfriends and are going to graduate college soon. Callie is a Sophomore. Riley and Katie are in college. Lacey is graduating this year. Sonni is at COS. What the hell happened to my childhood? I will never spend another summer at the Deitz cabin. I will never climb frog rock again or go to Dudley Ranch. I’ll never go hunting with my dad again. I’ll never go inside the 38o house…. I’ll probably never see the Sisto’s, or step inside Foothill.. Who knows if I will even see Delaney or Owen.. But I’ll never spend a halloween at their house, or go into their treehouse with those weird little brown berries that fell off their tree, or see their clawfoot bathtub filled with plants that DD put outside her bedroom window, or watch Owen obsess over Cars or Nate over spongebob or Jacob playing Call of Duty on their family computer… I will never sit on the Deitz porch swing and hold kittens again, or see Boomer.. I miss their pebble walkway and watching everyone play volleyball on summer afternoons while Melissa obsessively cleaned her house.
I’ve only been writing for twenty minutes, but I just took a long journey back into my childhood.. I can’t believe where I am today, when I used to lay awake at night and think about my future. I never imagined my parents would divorce, and moving to the coast was always a desire but seemed far fetched. Going to a public high school? Unheard of. I’ve had three boyfriends? ALLYSA! Y0u were supposed to marry Jacob, Nate, or Caleb – preferably Max. C’mon! You were going to get married in Gramp’s church, with that nasty blue carpet and wooden pews and green cushions, the weird cross with backlights. But too much for that, because it has all been torn out and redone. Now it’s The Road. Those little lights that used to line the stage are even gone. The smell is gone too.. And you have been in every room in that church now, all the mystery is gone. The fear is gone. Now it’s just a musty old building, and the imagery of Burt is dead. You had your thirteenth birthday party there, it was really fun. You worked there, too. When you were 15. You watched your little cousins roam those halls, now. Oh yeah – Uncle Juano got married and has three kids. Uncle Wink has two. Aunt Ne has Ribbon now, and you lived with her as well. You miss that. You also lived with Nana and Gramps, your room was the one with the weird, old closet that always scared you. The one that used to be Gramp’s office with the bottles filled with sand and coins. Also, I don’t really have to tell you this because you kind of already know, but you don’t believe in God at all. But you already have your doubts.
So much has changed for me… I kind of just want to go to Katie’s trailor and just sleep among the musty old smell and bad internet. I want to wake up to the neighbor’s rooster crowing and the hill we all know is Goliath’s grave…