Monday, January 17, 2011

No Good Deed Goes Unpunished

Raising  a  family  isn't  hard  to  do.  That's  why  when  I  visited  my  old  classmate,  Chansela  Thompson,  I  sat  outside  in  my  two  seater  praying  that  my  tubes  would  tie  themselves!  Five  children,  ages  ranging  from  seven  to  eighteen  months.  Poor  child  was  only  twenty-five  with  a  streak  of  gray  hair  in  her  loosely  made  ponytail.  She  needed  help  badly,  but  the  bastard  that  got  her  pregnant,  was  in  prison  for  non  support  payments.  It  would  have  been  funny  if  the  kids  hadn't  been  deprived.  I  waited  in  the  car  for  another  ten  minutes.  After  I  heard  cursing,  I  ran  up  the  twenty  steps  and  poked  my  nose  in  the  wrong  business.

"What  are  you  doing,  Chansela?"  The  thin  framed  high  school  drop  out  had  her  third  oldest  in  a  headlock  trying  to  manage  the  mane  on  her  head.

"She  won't  stay  still!  I  have  to  be  at  the  damn  social  services  at  ten!"  Popping  the  chubby  bowlegged  girl  on  the  back  of  her  neck  with  the  wide  tooth  comb,  Chansela  threw  her  on  the  sofa  full  of  dirty  clothes.  My  heart  sank  as  I  went  to  see  if  the  little  girl  was  alright.  Wiping  tears  from  her  eyes,  I  asked  her  name.

"Malinda."  Sniff sniff.  "what's  your  name?"  She  then  wiped  a  long  watery  booger  from  her  nose.

"My  name  is  Ariona.  Your  mom  and  I  went  to  high  school  together.  Here,  let  me  tell  you  how  we  met."  I  sat  Malinda  on  the  sofa  beside  me,  where  we  could  get  a  spot,  and  began  telling  her  the  story  of  how  Chansela  and  I  had  met.  Malinda  paid  close  attention  as  I  began  with  the  cafeteria  showdown  between  me  and  one  of  Chansela's  friends.  How  she  didn't  like  me  because  I  had  worn  the  same  outfit  she  had  but  looked  better  in  it.  Well,  that  was  what  I  told  her  before  she  threw  grape  jelly  all  over  it.  Malinda  laughed  at  me  getting  my  ass  whipped  by  a  tiny  Asian  exchange  student.  Shaking  her  chubby  face  at  how  Chansela  started  a  bet  on  who  would  win  and  cashed  in  big  when  the  Asian  karate  chopped  me  in  the  throat!  Oh,  did  she  holler  when  I  told  her  about  the  footprint  in  my  forehead  that  lasted  weeks  after  the  fight.

When  the  story  was  finished,  Malinda  hugged  me  and  ran  into  her  room  when  I  told  her  to  get  dressed.  After  all,  her  hair  was  neatly  combed  and  pulled  back  into  a  ponytail.  Chansela  was  completely  ungrateful.

"What'd  you  do,  offer  her  a  candy  bar?"  Sliding  her  feet  across  the  dusty  floor  like  house  slave.

"No."  I  said  in  disgust.  "I  just  tried  a  different  approach.  One  not  so  violent."  Chansela  laughed,  then  threw  her  hands  in  the  air.

"Please  take  them  if  you  think  you  can  do  better.  Please!"  Chansela  sat  on  the  arm  of  a  vintage  chair  with  so  many  stains  covering  it,  the  original  color  was  obsolete.

Finally  all  of  the  children  were  ready to  go.  I  had  no  idea  how  I  was  going  to  safely  transport  five  children  in  a  two  seater  car.  The  baby's  car  seat  alone took  the  space  of  another  human  being.  Secure  enough,  we  all  rode  across  town  to  the  local  social  services  for  Chansela  to  reapply  for  food  stamps.  It  was  called  a  re  certification,  but  all  it  meant  that  after  three  months,  she  would  have  to  come  in  and  report  any  new  changes  or  if  things  were  the  same  within  her  household.  The only  new  change  I  could  see  in  Chansela's  household  were  less  roaches.  I  guess  the  rats  stopped  being  picky  and  ate  them!

When  Chansela  finished  her  errands,  I  offered  to  treat  all  the  kids  for  ice  cream.  By  the  annoyed  expression  on  Chansela's  face,  I  could  see  that  was  a  bad  idea.  My  first  mistake  was  allowing  the  words  ice  cream  to  loosely  slip  from  my  mouth  around  children.  For  the  entire  ride  home  they  really  did  scream  for  ice  cream.  Chansela  became  violent  and  reached  in  the  back  and  punched  all  five  screaming  children.  That  wasn't  fair  at  all!  The  eighteen  month  old  didn't  know  what  ice  cream  was.  He  just  wanted  to  get  out  of  that  soggy  diaper.

"Hey  Chansela!  What  the  hell  is  your  problem?!"  Opening  the  passenger  door  while  I  was  still  driving,  Chansela  leaned  outward  as  if  trying  to  jump.  I  slowed  the  car  down  right  in  the  middle  of  traffic.

 "You  raise  'em!"  Chansela  jumped  out  and  slammed  the  door.  Without  grabbing  her  children,  or  looking  back,  Chansela  stormed  down  the  street.

I  tried  to  reach  Chansela  all  that  week,  but  no  luck.  In  my  opinion,  every  parent  needed  a  break.  Maybe  Chansela  was  overwhelmed  by  all  of  the  responsibilities.  I  did  wonder  though,  if I  had  been anyone  else,  would  she  had  left  her  children  like  that?  It  was  hard  at  first  adjusting  to  the  new  life  of  motherhood.  Waking  up  at  5:30am  and  not  returning  to  my  comfort  zone  until  midnight.  Eric,  the  eighteen  month old,  was  a  handful  by  himself.  But  all  the  children  were  doing  well  even  though  there  were  some  new  rules  to  get  used  to,  like  proper  hygiene.

Nylona,  Shannel,  Malinda,  Tonia,  and  Eric  all  benefited  from  the  new  five  bedroom  home  we  moved  into  over  the  summer.  By  law  I  was   not  the  adoptive  parent,  but  with  the  knowledge  and  compassion  of  the  local  school  system,  nothing  was  reported  to  the  state.  For  the  next  six  months,  the  six  of  us  lived  in  warm  sweet  bliss  until  Chansela  showed  up.  In  court  that  was.  Chansela  was  captured  and  charged  for  prostitution.

Chansela  was  released  and  actually  cooperated  with  police  to  find  a  non  existent  kidnapper.  When  the  school  heard  of  Chansela's  allegations,  they  immediately  had  me  arrested  and  charged  with  five  counts  of  kidnapping.  When  I  told  police  how  I  really  got  the  children,  they  were  unmoved.  Then  I  showed  the  detectives  the  before  and  after  photos  of  the  children,  they  released  me,  and  locked  Chansela  up  on  two  brand  new  charges,  neglect  of  minor  children  and  stupidity!


ariona taylor said...

Of all the stories, I think this is the best one. What do you think?

Anonymous said...

That is just crazy! I commend you for being there for the children, because God knows what would have happened if it was someone else that did not give a damn...

What happened to the children? Are they back with her?

ariona taylor said...

Though the NC police department sucks, they wouldn't dare give that chick her kids back. Family stepped in.

Thanks for reading and for your feed back!!!

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