I graduated high school! It was basically a miracle according to Joan. Since I wasn’t smart enough nor pretty enough to find a “good man”…at least I had my high school diploma.
Joan was also dating my old high school principal, Leisure Suit Larry. He left the school my sophomore year and was placed in the Superintendents office which was a little “cottage” office right behind my house. He was transferred out of the school after he got a DUI and was plastered all over the newspapers. Larry drove by our house twice a day to go to work and always would see Joan; who was beautiful, dressed well and drove a nice sports car.
One day while I was in class I was called to the Vice Principals office. He asked me about a friend of mine that was in a psych ward for attempting suicide. Extremely random question and was weird. Before I left his office he asked me about my dad. He says “I pulled your emergency card to get your class schedule and saw that your dad lives in California and works for an oil company. Does he work on an oil rig and travel back and forth?” Random right? I explained he lives there full time as he and mom were divorced. It was so strange how he came to that conclusion or question, he was a weird dude anyway, so I chalked it up as that.
Little did I know Larry had asked the VP to find out my mom’s marital status so he could ask her out. The story of Leisure Suit Larry is a whole other topic and posting, but Joan told me it was most likely his influence that helped me graduate.
My teachers treated me like I was stupid and so did Joan, maybe they were right. It was even more clear that I must be stupid when my college fund was no longer available.
When dad left he had set up 2 college funds for Sis and I, $10k each to start our schooling. When I graduated I didn’t get to start right away as I had to have an ovarian cyst removed 3 days after graduation and then Joan became very ill (another topic for down the road).
The following year I was ready, so I worked the previous year selling sports shoes. I went to mom and told her that I was checking out college courses and needed to know how I was to pay for it, with a check from her or a credit card. She smiled at me and giggled, “what makes you think I have the money to send you to college?” I explained that I thought dad had set money aside for us, and she told me he did but there wasn’t any left.
Joan further explained that life isn’t fair and sometimes we have to make sacrifices. My college fund was spent before I graduated on a new sports car for my sister. I remember the day like it was yesterday, I just didn’t know I was the one who actually bought her the car.
My sister drove a muscle car through high school that Joan bought her. After Sis graduated she had come home one day and called mom at work, telling her that she found a new car she wanted. I believe Joan said no based on price and that’s when Sis lost her mind. She cried and screamed like a toddlers temper tantrum, on the floor kicking and throwing a fit. Pleading “Please mommy please. At least I’ve never left you like Katy did. Maybe I’ll just move to dads too.” There you have it, a 19-year-old behaving like a toddler.
Basically Joan gave in at that point and she bought Sis the car..with my college fund. Yes folks, Joan sacrificed my future to pacify the little monster she created.
Once I realized where the college fund went…I died. It felt like a knife in the gut with Joan shoving it in deeper while in my face saying “You stupid little girl, you’re not good enough, paybacks are a bitch”. I clearly wasn’t smart enough to send to college. She clearly had to have balanced what was more important right? I sucked in school, her boyfriend helped me graduate and my sister’s happiness was more important than my future.
I felt stupid, ashamed and embarrassed to even think I could manage college. What was I thinking? Oh and Dad..he didn’t want to be bothered by it. Nothing he could do about it from there. It was done, and what’s done is done. Dad helped solidify my simple-minded self.