Childhood Photograph

Good Morning, I apologize for only posting once this week. I’m currently updating the entire blog and thus had time for only one post this week. I decided to write a story about someone finding a childhood photograph. It’s not complete, obviously, but I like where it’s going and decided to continue this story and will publish the final product on Friday. Here, you can see where I made small notes and such. I think it’s important to not get hung up on the details unless finding them fun to explore.  Enjoy the Rough Draft!

ditch  I found this picture in a box my mother packed between a toaster oven and white bed sheets. She gave me back a whirlwind of memories getting lost in the woods that stood on the outskirt of Lawnwood, Florida. Small kid faces the color of cream and peanut butter wrapped themselves around my heart. I suddenly longed for my old friends despite leaving them for newer ones. Harold, Chloe, Mark, and I all shared something inerasable despite wanting to live somewhere else: our childhood.

I would have lived anywhere else back then if given the chance. However, my parents moved to Lawnwood to get away from city life and thus ended up in a town of ten-thousand people. I met Harold and Mark Cliffhanger first when they moved in next door to me on Loving Street. Everyone at school made fun of us for living on “wussy” street, except Chloe Belle.

“I want something pretty like that one day,” Chloe said to us on the bus one day. Mark and Harold sat behind Chloe and me. We all ended up together because of our last names and the bus driver’s fondness for an alphabetical seating chart.

A Ditch <<< The Childhood Memories Happen Here

My childhood friends and I climbed into them, gathering black dirt underneath our fingernails, and pretending to live in the forest like elves. We conducted leaves into king sized piles that we slept on and cooked with. The forest became a home away from all the chaos that filled our houses back in Lawnwood. We built orange pine needle towers that warded us against evil witches that liked to hunt children at night. We helped one another learn to ride broomsticks, sometimes falling ten feet from a pine tree branch. Harold never got the hang of landing on one’s feet ever since his brother Mark pushed him, expectantly, off a three-foot ladder.

“We’ll try again tomorrow,” I always told Harold after picking him up off the ground. Harold, a short kid with plump cheeks, nodded and went to help Chloe cook dinner. Chloe, a brown girl with pink ribbons in her hair, waved a palm frond over a pile of brown leaves.

The forest held many secrets that no one knew about except for us, a band of eight-year-old-kids. During this time, I already knew that something felt different about me aside from my shy nature. Whenever other kids approached my friends they often accepted them whole-heartedly. If someone approached me though they often stayed standing a few feet away, as if I had some kind of disease.


The Aftertaste of a Dream


Four years ago I got rejected from art school in New York City. The experience left me stranded in the middle of Florida with two best friends. We gathered our strength together in order to help one another. A flock of hands lifted one us out of a broken heart and into the art studio, where they learned to give into their emotions with by studying them. A flock of hands pulled one of us away from a small town, where everyone believed that a medical degree led to happiness, and into the vibrant city of Orlando. Each of them found a way to believe in themselves again while I wondered where to start.img-thing.jpeg

I switched majors, from art to writing, but still felt aimless. New York City no longer appealed to me since Orlando became my home. Its craft coffee shops, literary clubs, and hipster bars resonated with my need for culture. I no longer felt the craving to taste other cities, but I still craved a dream.

One of my friends went on to graduate and moved to a different state. The other one got married and continues to study art at the same university that I attend. We still help one another get through the hard times. Although, not all hard times call for the attendance of friends. For example, I felt the bitter taste of rejection the other night and thought of New York City. After several seconds it dissolved into something sweet. My teeth grinded against one another in anticipation for the next sample of rejection. I needed to taste something like it again. Maybe I’ll go to grad school. Maybe I’ll intern at a radio station. Either way I need a dream again.