The Handful

My poor parents…

They had no idea what they were getting themselves into when they decided to procreate for the second time.

Their first child (my sister, Michelle) was a calm, quiet child (I’m assuming this, as she is currently a fairly calm, quiet adult, and she looks very calm and quiet in old photos).

They probably wanted a second child to give Michelle a sister and (possibly) to give themselves another opportunity to eat birthday cake during the year. Because while cake generally tastes very good at any time of year, there is something about birthday cake that I can’t put my finger on. It might be the candle wax melting into the icing?

I digress.

I’ll bet my parents thought that both of their offspring would be calm, quiet and well-behaved children.

Let’s just say… it was not so.

I was a challenge. I was feisty, lively, scrappy. I would say inappropriate things at inappropriate moments. I regularly challenged boundaries and authority. I was not calm, or quiet (and definitely not well-behaved).

Some people blame parents for their children’s behavior. I don’t think Stan and Linda are to blame. (My mom possibly consumed too much Red #40 dye while I was in the womb, but we’ll never know for sure).

They are lovely people that tried their best. I was just a handful.


Case in point:

A few months ago my mom was going through their attic and came across a folder of my old drawings, notes, and schoolwork. She found a particularly intriguing letter from my childhood that I have transcribed (verbatim), for your convenience…


Dear Mom and Dad, 

I’m tired of getting blamed, spanked, kicked, pinched, scratched at bitten. (all from Michelle) 

So i’ve decided I running away! I’ve taken everything I want! 

Bye! Love Kim xoxo

Tell Grandma and Grandpa Bye! 

Here’s an idea where i’ll be!

(For their convenience, I thoughtfully included a detailed map of my location – near a shrub, between the Watt’s and Hesketh’s.)

If you find this letter Aug 19-21

23 i’ll be leaving that spot!

I don’t remember if I actually followed through on my plans, but I do remember living with my parents until I went to college – so I guess everything turned out okay in the end – for me, not for my parents – they had to suffer through it until I turned 18.

God bless them!

The letter


Kim, aged 7



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