25 Days of Memories, Day 16

Summer.

Such a beautiful name for a rather heinous girl.  Ironic, really.  Summer was the bane of my existence at daycare.  And yet, she ruled the playground so you had to play nice in order to have a happy recess.  Okay, so truthfully I don’t remember the much about her, but I remembered enough to know her name, which is in and of itself significant.  There was something about a lipstick and a slide at the playground…and five-year-old gossip.  That is all I remember about Summer.

Daycare itself, however, I remember plenty about that.

Let’s see, there were those monkey bars that I loved, despite the fact that I usually got blisters on the palms of my hands and once even fell off of them and dislocated my elbow.

Even at 5, I must have been a drama queen because when I screamed to the daycare workers, they insisted I must have just sprained it.  The workers told my my mom as much over the phone with me screaming in the background the whole time.  “Oh, you know what a drama queen Lindsey can be, Ms. Fleeman.  It’s probably nothing.” My mom thought it best to come pick me up and have things checked out just in case.  And good thing too.  It was bad enough to require a cast!

Looking back, this is the earliest reference people make in stories to me being dramatic.  But the first time anyone called me a drama queen to my face was the summer I turned 19.  That’s a long time not to know you’re a drama queen.  I still don’t fully believe it.  A hypochondriac, sure, but I come by it honestly.

Back to daycare.

Let’s see, there was the time we were coloring and I borrowed a beautiful cerulean blue crayon from a girl next to me.  Let’s call her Lyla.  I proceeded to break Lyla’s beautiful blue crayon.

Panic stricken, I turned to Lyla with the face of an overly apologetic puppydog–the puppy that just got caught pooping on the rug.

Lyla sighed and said, “that’s okay.” She handed me the azure blue crayon from her pack of 100 crayola crayons–the last brilliant blue she had left.

With all the exuberance of a forgiven girl, I grabbed the blue crayon grateful for a second chance.  The force of my joy proved too great, however, when that brilliant blue crayon broke in all of its brilliant blue glory, leaving my shame to double and my cheeks to glow red hot.

“Um, Lyla…” The sad puppy-dog face returned, this time eyes glistening.  “This one broke too.”

“That was my last one!” said Lyla angrily.  “You owe me a dollar!”

Oh happy day! A way to pay off the debt that weighed heavily on my spirit.  Surely…surely my mother would agree to giving me one dollar!

At the dinner table that night, I hesitantly brought up the matter as my mother cleared the table.

“What do you need a dollar for?

“I, I…” I began stammering.  Truthfully, I hadn’t thought I would need to explain my request–I hadn’t prepared a speech or even collected my thoughts.  If I confessed to my crime of breaking two of Lyla’s crayons.  Would I be forgiven? Could my mother understand?

She didn’t of course, and I didn’t get the dollar.  My mother didn’t seem to be as concerned with my unpaid debt as I was.  I was in agony, but she assured me that Lyla would understand.  So I dropped it.  Apparently I had learned the serenity prayer early in life.  If mom said no, there was nothing more to be done about it.  I guess I dropped it the issue because I went to daycare the next day and didn’t worry about it.  Haven’t worried about it since, in fact, but those first few hours following what can only be described as some of the most agonizing of my five-year-old life.  Perhaps even more traumatizing than the time I pooped my pants at daycare… ; )

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