Writing Prompt: Childhood and Spaghetti

Write as much as you can in fifteen minutes using two words given to you. Words may be reused, but the writing/story will always be different.

*IMPORTANT NOTE: Some of my writing may be more appropriate for mature audiences than for younger audiences or children. Please read with caution.**

Writing Prompt: Childhood and Spaghetti

I didn’t have a lot of money growing up. We did what we could to get by and hoped that the utilities would stay on long enough for us to get them paid. I probably grew up sooner than I should have with all the worry I went through as a child. That’s something I wouldn’t understand fully until I was older.

As we didn’t have a lot of money, we constantly had to go really cheap on groceries. Which meant that a lot of time we’d have the same kind of dish multiple times during the week. I ate without complaint because I knew that complaining would do no good. I also didn’t really mind it so much at the time if I was being honest. I was eating and that’s all that mattered. There were many people in the world who weren’t even getting to do that. 

One thing that took me a long time after I turned eighteen to really enjoy again was spaghetti. I still don’t really care for it all that much. There would be times that I would have spaghetti three times in a single week during my high school years. To this day, I still can’t stand boiled hot dogs. Can’t even stand the look of them. 

Childhood wasn’t exactly easy for me. There were times I was happier than other times growing up. The worst time of my life was when I was a teenager. I had moved in with my father while I was in middle school. My father and his wife made it very obvious almost from the first day that they didn’t want me around. They resented having me under their roof.

I don’t have a horror story of being beaten senseless every day. I didn’t have to wear heavy makeup to cover the bruises. I don’t have unhealed broken bones. In some ways, I can say I was really lucky. In some ways, I wasn’t. 

The abuse I faced on a daily basis was all mental. I was constantly grounded for my smart mouth. I couldn’t have friends over. I couldn’t go to friends’ houses. I was constantly accused of thinking about sneaking out to go to parties. Parties I was never even invited to because I found it impossible to make friends. 

My stepmother hated me with a passion. She would constantly pick fights with me. When that didn’t work, she would turn her kids against me. They were young and would hit me, and while they were hitting me, she told me that if I touched them she would put me in juvenile. There came a point that I was happier being at school than at home. I remember begging my mom and grandmother to let me move back in with them. It was a nightmare. 

While my father wasn’t the real culprit of all of this, he didn’t really put a stop to it either. If anybody told him what was going on, he wouldn’t hear of it. It got to the point where I just stopped talking about it. I just started keeping it all to myself. I felt like I had nobody to help me. Eventually, I felt like I deserved it all. 

It’s been twenty years now. I still have nightmares. Not as often as I used to. Thank goodness. I still have major struggles with my self-esteem and self-worth. I also have issues dealing with my anger. I think that’s mostly from where I was being hit by my siblings and was basically forced to sit there and take it. I was essentially shamed for being upset over that. To this day, when I get angry, I get agitated with myself for feeling angry because I don’t feel like I’m entitled to be angry about anything. Either that or I’m just so detached from anger that I talk about it nonchalantly like it’s happening to somebody else. 

I’m better than I was, but I still have a long journey ahead of me. I’ve since learned that family doesn’t always come from blood relations. I also learned that not everybody is meant to stay in your life forever. The moment I turned eighteen, that side of my family threw me away like trash. I was hurt at first, but now I see that they really did me a favor in the end. I got out of the nightmare that I’d lived for five to six years because of that.

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