Girls Write Out
Tuesday, October 14, 2008

A Leopard doesn't change her spots – but they look fabulous!

When my husband and I hadn't been married very long, he invited a kid from the hood to come live with us. As in me. Because he was at work all day. We'd known Curtis when we lived in the hood. He was one of eleven children who lived with a grandmother, who wasn't their grandmother, but every time a druggie mother dropped off a kid, she didn't have the heart to put them into the system.

Now don't get me wrong, Curtis was a great kid, but he was sixteen. I was 26 and I didn't know a thing about kids, much less a teenager from the hood. So Curtis started getting into a little trouble. Not really, but the white, upper-class kids blamed him for stuff and the parents were turning on me. Did I mention my husband was at work all day? SOOO sucked!!!

So I told my DH, "I'm not good at this. I don't want to do this anymore. The moms scare me and Curtis is going to get blamed for something he didn't do." So DH did what any clueless, doesn't-get-it-yet, new husband would do, and took me into the pastor to straighten me out.

The pastor, who had spent 25 years in Africa, listened, nodded his head. My husband said, "Curtis is not Kristin's problem." To which the pastor replied, "Then get Curtis out of the house and find out what your wife's problem is."

So what was my problem? Well, I'm sort of a diva. Always have been. The only girl on both sides. I never babysat, never played schoolteacher, and could have done without the minivan stage of life -- though I love having the kids to fill it, just not driving a bus.

The older pastor has a caustic personality. Like me. His wife was sweet and gentle-natured. The kind of woman you think of when you think of a quiet spirit, Proverbs 31 and all that. My husband said to the pastor, "Mary (pastor's wife) wouldn't do this."

And I'll never forget, Mel's laugh. He stopped for a while to laugh and said, "Well Bryed, I don't know if you've noticed, but Kristin isn't Mary." And I'm still not Mary, though I'm a little closer.

If you're still with me. God uses me to plant seeds and spring up a harvest. It just isn't the quiet, baking, craft-creating, sower that my husband imagined for himself. But seriously. I drove a 5.0 GT Convertible Mustang, lived in a really cool studio by myself, and worked as a marketing director for a mall. What part of haus frau did he see in that, exactly? Face it, he went for the package and thought he'd mold me. Good luck with that. In his defense, my mom is a quiet spirit. Unfortunately, for DH, I'm my dad. So...I learned a few things, and I don't buy on credit, but you know, I still know a good deal when I see one! LOL

So what part of your spots didn't you change? Not sinful behavior, but not something you're proud of either?

FYI: Curtis comes in two weeks. He's a college graduate of UOP, married to a gorgeous gal and he's up here to audit a financial institution. How's THAT for accomplishment?
posted at 9:22 PM  
  Comments (8)
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At 9:31 AM, Blogger hotcoffeenow said...

I didn't get married until 32, so I was pretty independent - career woman, my own place, etc. I still retain a lot of that independence and require a little 'alone time' on a regular basis to keep from going crazy. And when I was little, my grandfather used to call me a Prima Donna - I still am. Much to my husband's amusement. Or chagrin. I can't tell which. :)

At 10:09 AM, Blogger Kristin said...

That is too familiar!! I need that alone time too. I had a child home yesterday and he talked incessantly. His siblings were out at 12:30. I thought I'd go nuts. LOL

At 1:04 PM, Blogger Pam S. said...

When I was in college (in the mid 70's), I was hyper-active, silly, and was considered off-the-wall. I am still all of those things. and people regularly ask me, "Do you ever stop moving?" Nope.

Also, I can do cool tricks with a hockey stick--like twirling it like a baton. My husband thinks that's really off-the-wall, but my students love it.

At 1:58 PM, Blogger Kristin said...

Pam, I'm glad to know i have a soul sister out there. Bring on the weirdness and have fun!

At 3:24 PM, Blogger Diann Hunt said...

Sometimes it's hard for me to be serious--when I should be. I'm one of those who laughs out loud in the library. In the doctor's office. When the conversation has turned serious. I don't laugh when people get hurt, just so you know. Not even a fan of America's Funniest Home Videos. So there's that. But I just tend to see something funny in everything. My husband doesn't always appreciate that "quality."

I probably have issues, huh?

At 3:36 PM, Blogger Pam S. said...

No, Diann. Those aren't "issues." That's called a "great sense of humor." That's why it's so much fun to read your books (and Kristin's too!)!

My husband is the serious type. He says I keep it "interesting around here." He says that's why he "sticks around." (I forgot to say that I was practicing the hockey stick tricks in the kitchen one night...and we have a small kitchen. Yeah. Yeah. I know. It was a really dumb idea to practice in the kitchen. I admit it.)

At 4:31 PM, Blogger Ane Mulligan said...

Looks like you helped plant a couple of seeds in Curtiss. :D

At 9:15 PM, Blogger Kristin said...

Curtis was going to succeed on his own. He really had the drive and such a sweet nature. He was always a great kid, as was his brother, Matthew. Those two we had a special affinity for.

Curtis watched successful people and asked a lot of questions about how they did it, but he was one of those kids who nothing could knock him down. I'm telling you, the stories that kid could tell. Amazing. He's 30, but he was 8 when he sang in our wedding, so i still think of him as 8. LOL


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The Authors
Kristin Billerbeck
Kristin Billerbeck is a proud Californian, wife, mother of four, and connoisseur of the irrelevant. She writes Christian Chick Lit; where she finds need for most of the useless facts lulling about in her head.

Colleen Coble

Colleen Coble writes romantic suspense with a strong atmospheric element. A lovable animal of some kind--usually a dog--always populates her novels. She can be bribed with DeBrand mocha truffles.

Denise Hunter

Denise Hunter writes women's fiction and love stories with a strong emotional element. Her husband says he provides her with all her romantic material, but Denise insists a good imagination helps too.

Diann Hunt

Diann Hunt writes romantic comedy and humorous women's fiction. She has been happily married forever, loves her family, chocolate, her friends, chocolate, her dog, and well, chocolate.

Hannah Alexander

Cheryl Hodde writes romantic medical suspense under the pen name of Hannah Alexander, using all the input she can get from her husband, Mel, for the medical expertise. For fun she hikes and reads. Out of guilt, she rescues discarded cats. She and Mel are presently taking orders from four pampered strays.

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