Here I am in my baton twirling days. This picture was taken August 20th of the grand old year of 1968. Yes boys and girls, this was before color pictures were all the rage. Let me tell you, our cute little cowgirl looking outfits were purple. My favorite color. And yes, tucked away in my hope chest (another old time thing, where you saved things in the HOPE that you would someday marry) is my outfit. I saved it for my future daughters and granddaughters to play with and wear. Okey, enough of the boring stuff, on with the story.
I took baton lessons when we lived in Colorado Springs. In the summertime we got to march in parades. I remember 2. I want to say that the first one we marched in was in Manitou Springs. It had to be or I certainly would not remember a name like that. The second and bigger one we marched in was in Pueblo.
Some things are a little bit sketchy. Like where did we start? Not sure. I don't even remember is being dropped off. Marched the parade route. Get to the end. This is where the memory gets more fuzzy. Did my parents say where they would pick me up. I can't remember them saying anything of the sort. Some girls were "told" to stay where we ended up. Others were "told" to go back to the park. So I decided to go back to the park, cuz most of the girls were doing that. We walked back and hung around the park. One by one all the girls got picked up.
Finally it was just me. And it was getting later and later in the day. I would watch the cars driving past. Nope, never saw my mom and dad. I was freaking 11. I was starting to get scared. I'm sitting on the the little retaining wall that surrounds the park. I cry, I'm wondering, where are they? Did they just go home without me? Why haven't they come back to the park? I think all the things that an 11 year old thinks when they are alone, in a strange place. I move from the east side of the park, to the south side of the park. Back and forth, in the hopes that they would drive by and see me. Finally, a police car comes around to where I am. They stop. And you know what. I can't remember a thing about what happens from this point on. Were my mom and dad with them? Did they call my mom and dad and come pick me up at the park? I DON'T KNOW.
Ok, scary sidebar. Have I mentioned that I don't remember anything about my 5th grade year. Nothing, to the point of wanting to go get hypnotised but am deathly afraid of what I will find out. Aren't you about 11 when you are in 5th grade?
(Stepping back to the table) I was a real lost child. Lost in a city that I didn't live in. Lost in the shuffle of 6 other children. Trying to be a big girl in a little girls body. I realize now that my parents must have been frantically searching for me. I don't blame them. Ok, maybe just a smidge, but only because I was never told where they would pick me up.
This story is making my heart pound, and the tears are trying to flow. But at least I have this forum to get it out. I'm not holding it in. I'm letting those things out that cause me heartache. And I know that is why I always have to have people with me now. Being alone is scary.
And to my own children, this is why your crazy mom ALWAYS felt the need to be there with you on your new adventures. Didn't want you to be Lost In The Shuffle.