California Here I Come!

Well now I’ve gone and done it. I married him. I didn’t really think to much of it because I followed the example my parents set for me growing up. I listened to their love story and saw how they did everything together. I saw their good and bad days and thought “Hey, I can do this.” All the while, there was a sense of loss somewhere deep inside me and I could feel it. I left school to be with him. I moved to the West Coast to be with him. At barely 20 years old, I left everything I knew because I trusted him with my heart and thought it would be okay.

He got what he wanted and now he could keep me close.

“Where are we going for our honeymoon?” I asked. That question was shortly before the wedding. He replied that we could not go anywhere immediately because he had to get back to work. He would figure that out later. So no romantic honeymoon for us. Just get me to California and that’s that.

We landed at LAX and he drove us to Huntington Beach to start our life together. He brought me to our first apartment right on Warner Avenue. A main thoroughfare to the beach. That was all I needed to know. Which way to the beach? I actually own a tank top that I bought at the flea market that has those exact words. Yes, I kept it. It is all I have left besides these crappy memories. He told me that he was leaving the next day for the next 4 days and that while he was gone I should look for a job. Hmm. Okay. I started to wonder how I would accomplish that without a car. He told me I could walk to the grocery story down the street if I needed any food or other items. How the hell do I get to the beach? I don’t even have a bicycle. Have any of you been to Los Angeles? Southern California? Orange County? You cannot get anywhere without transportation.

First order of business. Leave your new wife and let her figure it out. Awesome. I quickly realized that this was not going to be one of those great love stories.

When I talk to people about their 20’s, they mostly tell me about how they sowed their oats, traveled and partied. I missed all of that..It never happened for me. I laugh at this statement because so many people judge me without knowing the real story. I wasn’t out late at night, raging in the clubs. I never did that until I was too old to really do it, but I needed to see what the hell that was all about. By the time I saw what people in their 20’s should be doing, that ship had sailed for me. I was stupid and got married. Then I moved away from my family and went to work at World Savings Bank on Warner Avenue. Why did I take a job there? Because I could walk there. You know, that control thing must really make some people feel superior. I walked to that bank on day two, filled out an application and got a job as a teller. What else was I qualified to do? Nothing. Perfect. Just how he wanted it. I didn’t need an education. Remember? Guess what? I also found out where the nearest college was located because I was not going to give that up. Shit. I need a car. I can’t go anywhere! I started my job immediately because there was no honeymoon to worry about or family dinners or friends nearby.

I will not forget the day I got my first paycheck. He kept calling me at work to see if they paid me yet. He finally heard what he needed and drove to the branch to collect my check. Yes, he went out of his way to take my paycheck. He walked in and walked right up to me, took my check and left.  Every single person in the branch stood their with an expression of “What the fuck just happened?” I did not have a say in what we did with any of my paychecks. I handed them all over to him. I’m stupid! I know this! That pissed me off.

And so it begins.

Ladies, it is NOT okay to let a man treat you like this. EVER. It makes me so angry and I have tried for a lifetime to let that anger go. It is not directed at him, but at me. Why did I let him do that? Love? I don’t care who you are, stand up for yourself. Let me be the lesson.

I still don’t have a car. I will save that amusing story for my next post.

 

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