Innergiggler's Blog

I LOOKED IN THE MIRROR AND SAW A BULLY!

Posted on: January 26, 2011

Camp Mayfair – Summer, 1955

I’m eleven years old and my stupid counselors expect me to close my eyes and fall asleep at ten o’clock!  Shit!  I don’t even go to sleep at ten when I’m home.  Screw them!  When the two of them go to sleep – I’m taking over, again.

My watch says 12:00a – Kim is snoring soundly and Mindy’s face is tucked under her pillow where it belongs.  “Roberta – wake up!”

Roberta is up and tip toeing over to Sandy – Sandy wakes up Marsha – on and on – now everyone is dressed and ready –  except Carol Bender.  I march over to Carol.

“Wake up!  Get up!  Now!”

 “I just wanna sleep.   I don’t want to get in trouble.”

“Go ahead – stay here, you piss ass scardy cat.  We don’t want you anyhow!  Fine.  I’ll get her at breakfast.”

The seven of us are off on another adventure  –  a midnight stroll into Monticello where we’re gonna uhm…uh…find something exciting for eleven year olds to do.  Mostly just getting away from camp is thrilling.  No raid tonight – we’re on the move!  Whoppee!

Walking down the road of excitement in high spirits from being bad, we’re giggling and poking each other with delight.  “This is really fun!  We should do this every night.”

Let’s sing!  “Born on a mountaintop in Tennessee, greenest state in the land of the free…Davy, Davy Crockett, king of the wild fron…uh oh!  Shit!  I see headlights – it could be the Camp Mayfair station wagon.  Quick, head for the bushes – ssshh!  We can’t get caught!  Nobody move! 

But everyone is moving and rustling the leaves.  I’m stepping in something soft and scary.  “Sandy, you’re making too much noise.  Stop whining.  Marsha, get back here or I’ll beat the shit out of you.”   I try wrapping my hands around her mouth but she’s squealing so I let go. “No, Marsha, get back here.  Crap!  She’s jumping out in front of the car, raising her hands in surrender.  

Driving back in the Camp Wagon, the silence is ear-splitting, no one dadres utter a word.  I know I’ll be forced to sleep in Mrs. Berman’s room once again for two nights of punishment.  Just the thought of the camp owner’s snores shaking the bedroom walls makes me sick.   And I’m stuck next to her in the bed – all night long.

The next morning I let Sandy and Marsha have it.  “You need to be stronger!  I don’t want to be disappointed again!  And Carol – make sure she doesn’t get her breakfast muffin.  Someone drop it on the floor.” 

CUT TO:  January 26, 2011

I wasn’t allowed back to Camp Mayfair the next summer.  I blamed it on my brother who was always fighting with older boys.  I blamed it on Mrs. Berman – and Carol – and Sandy – and,  and, and…

Years later when I really looked in the mirror, I saw a sad, frightened little eleven year old who took charge at camp because she was powerless at home.  A little girl who mimicked her dad.  When we look at bullies – let’s look at mom and dad too!

Apologies to Carol, Sandy, Marsha, the rest of my bunkmates, the counselors Kim and Mindy and Mrs. Berman who was about 90 in 1955.  Most of all, apologies to myself for being less than I could be.

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5 Responses to "I LOOKED IN THE MIRROR AND SAW A BULLY!"

Interesting Linda, I find it adventurous and something I would never have attempted as I was a anxious, frightened child who was afraid of my own shadow and the pleaser who would never want to disappoint or get into trouble. But I did sometimes. See I think you were being all you could be and making a move and being a leader. Funny, how we see things differently. But it is your life, afterall.

Linda Linda Linda…Well I’m not THE Carol, but if it helps I will symbolically Forgive You!!!! I was bullied and I bullied!! It was all part of finding your ID!!! I see you learned your lesson!!! I’m sure you showed those girls that girls could be strong and loved being included in your adventures, as we all are now!!!! Love this & YOU!! XOXOXOX

I see Bully and think Bulldog.
No, I should have known better but I never thought it would bring me to SUMMER CAMP where Miss Princess Summerfall Winterspring rallies the troops for a get away(yes the thrill is wonderful)until you get caught! and we all get caught(hint).

I am almost choking with laughter and then silence for you are singing MY childhood song.
The song of Davy Crockett which I sang to my dolls each day at tea~~long story~.

Now I am APMP ~LOL visualizing the Princess jumping into the bushes and mush then seeing Marsha jumping out in front of the car and all of you sitting in dead silence in the back of the car in fear.

You were a bossy brazen 11 year old. There is always one. You might have hurt with your words at times and stomping on someones muffin is mean I do say but these are passages of life~growing up~learning right from wrong. You learned and grew from this and I bet every person you mentioned in this blog also grew from it~counselors included.

I bet if your Dad watched a video of this exact blog he would realize what you realized years later because we can all look back and learn from our pasts.
There is always one more dominate parent~kids learn this early on.
I loved this blog. Thank you for sharing it.

After 25 years of teaching I do not find this the bullying of today. Today’s bullying is physical, mental, constant, vicious, weapon/ drug dangerous and internet word bashing.

I am sure tons will disagree but there are life paths that need to be walked in order to learn. If all paths are eliminated or paved so smooth as to not hurt any feelings or take a few risks or changes then we are not living and not expressing freedom of speech or will~~~how lifeless we all would be.

loved this and you
check my wall I am posting something special just for you my sista!!

This one is from Maya Angelou via Amy Ferris via someone else but you get the idea…it was so great everyone shared now I’m sharing with you!

You did then what you knew how to do….when you knew better you did better. ❤ Love A.

I love this blog and all the comments!!!! My heart and head want to write and write. We aren’t born knowing all the answers!! You are a great gal, big heart, and learning and looking at yourself, which is what I hope we all do more and more. And I love Kathleen’s comment, with whom I totally agree on this.

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