This is the second incident that I remember from when my dad and FSM were still dating.
This happened at around the same time as the two previous entries. I had been singing my entire life. It was and still is my one great passion, and I happen to be pretty good at it too….or at least, I must be fairly good to have made it into the youth choir for the area where I lived. I lived and breathed that choir. All my best friends were there, and I couldn’t wait for choir practice every Friday….and I couldn’t wait for the trip to Thailand that was planned during my second year in the choir.
I nearly jumped out of my skin the moment I found out that we would be going overseas. It was like a dream come true. A dream that nearly got killed….
I told both my parents that the choir was going abroad, and that it would cost R5500 for me to go along. (about 3 of the kids had to stay behind in the end because they couldn’t afford it) We started with passport and visa applications immediately, and my parents arranged that each of them would pay half of the trip fees. It was close to December and I was starting to think about getting a job for spending money. Then Dad said the he and FSM needed to speak to me.
They sat me down in the lounge on a bright and sunny day, and told me that I couldn’t go. They gave me reasons why, but I was so devastated that I can barely remember what they were. Everything was ruined!! The one thing that I wanted more than anything in the world had been destroyed.
It was around this time that my relationship with my mom started getting better too. (in hindsight, she probably saw an opportunity to win me back, but I didn’t see it that way back then) I told her that my dad had said that I couldn’t go because he couldn’t pay his half. I was completely crushed. I didn’t count on Mom’s resourcefulness. Somehow, she managed to make a plan to pay the full amount, as long as I worked part-time during the holidays for spending money. My life had meaning again!!
About a month before I was set to go to Thailand, Mom decided to take me to the doctor to have him look at my skin. I didn’t have acne as such, but I did have a problem skin and it was starting to eat at my self-confidence. Dad must’ve authorized it because I was on his medical aid. The doctor prescribed Roacutane.
I was almost halfway through the three month treatment when the date of my trip to Thailand arrived. I asked Dad if we could get a renewal on my prescription as I would be running out halfway through my trip. And for a second time I was told no. This time it was because my portion of the medical aid had been used up. I decided that I wouldn’t let this ruin my trip and left it there.
The next ten days were those you read of in fairytales. I saw things that blew me away and had experiences that I can’t describe to anyone. The memories I have of that trip are ones that I will cherish for the rest of my life, because they offer me a bright light in the midst of dark times. I forgot about everything that had gone on at home and had the time of my life. Which is probably why I was so unprepared for what happened when I got home…..
I was ten years old when Mom’s cat died from a dog bite. I absolutely adored cats, and my parents got me a cat of my own after Katie died. He was the cutest little black cat with only a white spot on his tummy and his throat. His face resembled that of a mouse, so we called him Mickey.
For six years, Mickey did everything with me. I was the only person who could pick him up. He only slept on my bed and he only came when I called him. I loved that cat more than anything and when I came home from Thailand, he was gone…..
While I was away in Thailand, Dad had decided that he couldn’t spend every weekend at FSM’s house, and leave our dog and cat alone at the house….so they had to go. He (always having been more fond of dogs) arranged with Mom to give Hitler (our gorgeous 2-year-old German Shepherd whom I loved almost as much as Mickey) to friends of hers on a farm. Mickey, on the other hand, would be put down.
I came home exhausted from jet-lag, only to find that my darling cat was missing!! Thankfully, my darling mother had come to the rescue again and arranged that my grandparents would adopt Mickey so that he wouldn’t have to be put down.
It wasn’t very long after this that I decided that I couldn’t stay with Dad anymore. At the end of that same year (and after four months of therapy) I moved in with Mom.
Dad’s one condition for letting me move was that I would quit the youth choir…..
Have a good weekend.