If I was posed with the question as to weather or not my childhood was a happy one, I would have to answer that most of my memories from my early life are fond. For the most part, my life was completely and totally fine and dandy. For the most part.
But then, peppered throughout my childhood memories, I have ones that are slightly less than perfect. What could possibly go wrong in the life of a six year old with siblings, toys and imagination galore? Plenty. Like that one time…
*you are now going back…back…back…into the mists of time…*
I had just had my sixth birthday. I had received many wonderful presents and had had more sugar than ought to be allowed for a child of my age. I lay on my bed, content and happy as I looked over my recently opened gifts. And then my sister walks into the room. In the back of my mind I wondered why she had such a suspicious look on her face, but my mind was so clouded with happiness, all reason was gone.
“Hi, Jo.” She says, a strange glimmer in her eye.
“Hi, Nikki.” I say, not too interested. I was busy playing with one of my new gifts, my favorite one. It was a Beanie Baby giraffe named Twigs, given to me from my aunt and uncle who lived in
Then Nikki’s eyes lingered for a moment too long on my giraffe, and then her voice cut into my bliss. “I’ll give you three dollars for that giraffe.”
I was astonished. She expected me to sell her Twigs for a measly three dollars? “No, thanks.” I said. “He’s my favorite.”
But the glimmer of envy remained locked in her eyes, her resolve in no way weakened. Then she produced her trump card. She pulled a large, pink, heart-shaped box from behind her back. “Look at this, Johanna.” She said slyly. “Isn’t this pretty?”
Blast, she was good. She knew my weakness, the little thief. Money I could resist. Pretty things—boxes especially—not so much. And she knew it. “Isn’t this box pretty? It’s in the shape of a heart,” she said, stating the obvious.
I looked at the box. It was pretty, to be sure, and I wanted it. But one more look into the eyes of Twigs, and I just couldn’t do it. “No, that’s okay.” I said.
But Nikki was not daunted. “C’mon, Jo. I’ll give you the pretty box and three dollars for the stupid giraffe. C’mon.” now the thing about Nikki is that she has a way of making you think you have no choice weather or not to obey her. I felt trapped…like somehow I had to give her my giraffe because she told me to…but not sure why I had to. I did want that box, though. And three dollars wouldn’t be too bad to have, either.
Well, in the end, Nikki convinced me to give her the giraffe for the heart-shaped box and three dollars. Immediately afterward, though, I was horrified that she had used her evil powers to trick me into giving away my birthday present. I even begged her to take the box and the money back…I wanted Twigs! He was sad without me, I could tell. We were both miserable, I tried explaining to Nikki. But she would hear nothing of it. She had achieved her goal. She had successfully—and legally—stolen my birthday present.
I had always thought Nikki would make a good criminal if she ever took it into her mind to become one, and after that I knew it for sure.
But Nikki was not always such an evil, birthday present-stealing, sister-tricking, unfair trade-making desperado. Like that time we were detectives. But then we couldn’t find any mysteries, so we made flyers and distributed them throughout our neighborhood to the various residents. But then we still didn’t get any mysteries, so we imagined up our own. Like, if the neighbors were painting their fence, we were just sure that they were trying to paint over blood spots. We also thought for sure that the garbage men were stealing stuff. Why else would they be driving around while it’s dark? C’mon, people, let’s have some common sense here.
Or when we found a little stray puppy and brought it home and fed it while mom and dad were gone…and got in trouble for it because “Now he’ll never leave!” according to our dad. Nikki and I were confused because, well, isn’t that the point?
Or like the time we decided to run away from home (I don’t remember why now, and I’m pretty sure I didn’t then, either), and actually packed our backpacks and made it to the front bushes before losing our nerve.
Nikki is awesome. The bestest big sister ever (as long as she keeps her paws off my stuff). I couldn’t picture childhood, or life at all, without her.