Saturday, October 04, 2008
The Hardest Part
I grew up in lesser neighborhoods in my small city. Over the years, a lot of people have made a lot of assumptions about how bad or how hard that must have been. Even my parents occasionally act like it was a tragedy they had to raise my brother and I in that neighborhood. The truth, though? Most of the time it wasn't that bad. Our house was great and my mom made our backyard and oasis of sorts. Other neighborhood kids thought we were rich and they loved to come over and play in our yard because we had a swing set, a sandbox and even pretty flowers.
Now, at the age of 27, almost six years after my parents sold the house I grew up in, I am finding out about the hardest part, at least for me, of growing up in a bad neighborhood. Yesterday I went on a long walk downtown with my boyfriend* and we ended up walking all the way to my old house. No one lives there now. It's falling apart. The yard is a disaster, one of the enormous oak trees has died and a huge limb from it is laying across the roof of the house. The back door and kitchen window are boarded up, as well as the garage window. Parts of the fence are torn up or even missing. It's only a matter of time before it isn't worth saving and probably no one will ever want to save it anyway. I am nostalgic and sentimental at times and unfortunately that can lead to hurt. I was surprisingly okay yesterday standing in the backyard looking at the broken window of my old bedroom. It's really kind of hitting me this morning, though. I think for me the hardest part of having grown up in a bad, decaying neighborhood is knowing that my home for the first 21 years of my life is decaying now too.
*I really need a blog nickname for him, but nothing good has come to mind yet.
It is hard when people think they know how hard or easy your childhood was. I liked the descriptions in this post.
It can happen anywhere, sweetling.