Losing A House

From the moment that a stranger knocked on my door that early afternoon in March of 2011 the

lives of my family would never be the same. The nervous look on the face of this stranger and

the camera in his hand put a lump in my stomach the moment our eyes connected. I moved out

into the entirely too cold that for shirts I had on but I didn’t want be told what I knew was

coming in front of my family. “I represent the company that has taken over your mortgage. This

is a hard time for all and we would like to make things go a little smoother.” He was the typical

middle aged white guy in gym shoes, a pair of jeans and a light coat that protected him against

the not so cold of weather of March. I honestly expected the guy who was going to throw my

family out of the house that we had lived in for the past eight years to have look like some cold

callous state trooper type with a cheap windbreaker drab olive pants and shiny shoes and the

most severe hair cut in the world to throw/hand me a fold piece of paper telling me I had forty

eight hours to leave the premises. Having never seen people get removed from hearth and home I

assumed it would be like a bad lifetime movie. “ Why hasn’t ASC sent me anything in the mail

or returned my numerous calls. I have been talking with those guys for the past six months trying

to refinance with those assholes and now a company who has taken over my mortgage has come

to ask me nicely to move.” The man shifted in his shoes. Clearly he was still nervous but the

lump in my stomach began to heat up. “Mr. Sibley people are doing a lot damage to their former

homes and we want to make this easy on you and ourselves by offering an monetary incentive

for you to leave the house exactly the way it is.” He handed me a manila envelope. Over the past

year and a half I had seen reports of people who on finding out they were losing their abodes

destroyed the place they raised a family in. Dry wall torn, pipes ripped from the wall, flooring

smashed, windows broken for some measure of payback over losing a place they loved. I opened

the envelope and glanced at the words that seemed blurry on the paper. After refocusing I saw

that the now owners of my house were not only offering me money to leave the house the way

without kicking the walls in but they wanted me to clean up the place including the garage on

their time frame. The sooner we left the more money my wife and I would receive. That was

when the lump flamed into a white hot coal and I entertained the idea of kicking the messenger

into a coma. He had begun to take pictures of my house as he talk to me. I began to get the

feeling that his nervousness had been a bs ruse and that he had done dozens of times before. I

could hear my wife call to my oldest son for something and the lump that was burning like a

miniature sun disentigrated. This was going to be another blow to my already fragile marriage.

Almost two years to the month I lost my house I was laid off along with 500 hundred union

members and supervisors. My unemployment checks had stopped coming a month prior. I was

amazed at how instantly people change when you are no longer working and on unemployment.

Being evicted from a house would only make this marriage weaker and a couple could only

become so weak before they were no longer a couple. The fake nice man was stilling talking to

me about something but I had ignored him for the last thirty seconds. Instead of beating him like

a dog who bite me I wipe him from my mind and walked back into my house to face my wife.

She sat on the couch and looked at me. She had to know it was bad news. “ASC sold our

mortgage to a company that propbably is going to flip our house. They are going to pay us not to

destroy this place but we have to be out in three weeks.” Her mouth literally fell open as she

slowly rose from her feet and walked over to. I wasn’t sure if she was going to try and slap me

(because clearly this was all my fault) so I moved the envelope that was at my side to the space

between us. She took the papers from me and scrutinized them much more then I had. Instead of

asking me questions like how did this happen? Or what are we going to do? The only question

she asked was “Do you think we can move out in three weeks? I told her what I thought “There

is no way in hell we can pull that off. Besides not having enough money we haven’t even started

looking for a house. Six weeks maybe.” She never looked up at me while she talked to me. “You

can tell the kids.” She said as she walked away from. The only reply I could muster was “of

course.”

Our children didn’t take this as badly as we had expected. Children were more resilant and easy

to change then their adult counterparts. We would borrowed money from relatives. Family and

friends would help us move. We would rent a house in the same city to make the transitions

easier for our kids. I would eventually look upon losing a house as an learning experience but

realized that my wife would see me in a different light and nothing would be the same.

Clear eyes to see

A major source of our conflicts is that humans don’t understand themselves let alone

other people. It’s irritating when I hear people say things about former lovers or spouses

like “You’ve changed” or “Your not the person I knew five years ago.” When in reality

you didn’t have the wherewithal to see this person because you saw them in “your eyes” when

you should have been looking at them with “clear eyes”. No one decides to start cheating

out of the blue. It was always part of that person and you didn’t see it because you played

a slight of hand trick on your own mind. Now you’re attached to a violent alpha male who

may kill you and your kids or you’re tied for the rest of your life to a viper of a woman

who cheated on you numerous times and the paternity of the kids you love are suspect.

We teach our kids to read and write but parents very rarely teach their kids to see the

truth and people for what they are. As an adult you know full well that so much of what

you knew as a child was a half truth or an outright lie but you teach your children,

the humans that you are most responsible for in the world, the same horrible lies that could

very well mentally and psychologically cripple them as adults. Am I suggesting that

you tell a five year old cold hard facts about rape murder and pain? Of course not

but ask yourself how many things you wish your parents or some adult in your life had

told you in your youth that would have made your life a little easier.

Tell your girls to error on the side of caution and not trust any man outside of

her dad and brothers. Before your son decides to be a patriot and join the armed forces

take him to see soldiers that have become wounded on the inside and out because of

conflicts that have very little to do with protecting the country. Makes sure that

before they vote for anyone they know who is really behind that candidate and is

their agenda for the betterment of most of us. Train them to notice the inflection

in a person’s voice so that they can understand what they said and what they really

mean. Make sure they don’t take anything to serious. Train them to enjoy what they

have.

The blue caddy

The car that killed me was a 74′ Cadillac and it was blue in color. My brothers

and I were in a foster home at the time. It was my sixth birthday and like any

red blood American child I wanted candy to celebrate. My older brother Ed was

tasked with taking me to a corner store to get some penny candy. As we came to a

street I decided that I was old enough to cross the street myself. I pulled away

from my brother’s grip and ran into the path of an on coming car. I was told most

of this because I don’t remember what happened. That is not entirely true. I

remember exactly what transpired. I died on my sixth birthday under a car.

I was told that the bumper of the Cadillac hit me and I bounced off but in reality

I was dragged under the passenger side of the car.The front tire runs over my back

crushing the majority of my ribs. As the wheel ran over my body and destroying

my new clothes it violently turns my body over. The rear tire flattens

my sternum pushing blood, urine and feces from all of my orifices. I will be alive

for another three minutes.

My older brother is on his knees. He is too shocked to even cry. People gather to

see the boy who has died on his birthday. I think of my brother Raymond and my

mother. How will they react when they discover that I have died.

I tell myself that I am not died. I tell my self that this is little more then a

scratch and I will be back at my foster mother’s May house in a week or two. I tell

my brain to make believe that I go back to my mother’s care in a few months time.

I make my brain tell me that I am 7 years old and living at 730 N Sawyer and my

best friend is still Christopher Wright. My mind has experienced such pain that

it refuses to let me be happy. My mind knows happy it not normal for me. It creates

scenarios were I am molested by a friend of my older brother. It let’s me think

that I spend cold winters huddled in one room with the rest of the family and hot

summers with no electricity or gas. It makes me feel alone and abandoned. My mind

lets my know that suicide is an option that I will gladly indulge when the pain

is too great. Even brain lets me find a love but only to cheat on her shortly

after the birth of our first child. My dying brain makes me a shiftless and

lazy man who is a bad copy of a father and husband who can’t hold a job and feel

sorry for myself.

I fight for control of my dying minutes. I push happiness into my mind. I help

to make kids who will become adults that my wife and I will be proud of. I

overcome my troubled mind to become a better person. I make my mind push myself

through school and beyond. I make myself see my grandchildren and great

grandchildren who are every color of the rainbow. I make my brain see me on

my death bed with my children and the woman I love around me.

Then I close my eyes.