Going into fifth grade my Father married our Stepmother and we moved into the city. Calling Slocomb a city is like calling Dothan “Birmingham”. Trust me, that killed in Alabama.
We’d been living on my Father’s bosses property in a trailer that belonged to us.
We had love if nothing else.
When our Stepmother entered the picture, all our lives changed for the better. She was not what you would call “nice”, but She remains one of the best people I know. She is a truly good person, and I can never be mad about it. We fought like hell over some serious shit, but she is not messing around and neither am I. She does NOT get the amount of credit she deserves for making all our lives better just by existing.
I didn’t need Tyler Perry to sound off to know what it was like having an old school person ranting about the bullshit of today, that was my life, and I loved it. (We love you, Tyler Perry.)
She could make you cry from laughing.
Alright, so when my Stepmother found us eating out of that Pizza Hut dumpster- I’m Kidding!
We moved into the city right at the end of 4th Grade.
The weeks leading up to my departure, the other kids tried to convince me to stay. My Parents let us choose. My Brother chose Slocomb, so I chose Slocomb not knowing that it was two campuses.
The kids in my class did everything they could to keep me there. I thought they were being ridiculous and frankly I thought since my housing situation had gotten better that I would naturally be around better people. I didn’t say it.
Slowly, the kids lost their resolve.
They started shutting me out. They wouldn’t play with me. They wouldn’t speak to me.
By the last day I was so irritated that when Mrs. Faye said I could leave I stood up and walked out without a word.
The Second kid in roll call was the only one to look at me in disbelief.
Rustin, I love your country ass.
ALL YOU COUNTRY BITCHES, I LOVE YOU SO MUCH.
Shut up, Chanzy
Me not saying anything was odd. I don’t know why I did it. We were (mostly) friends and most of it was hard-earned on my part.
The Teacher followed me out to the car, because they used to give a shit about you.
She had brown eyes,
“Are you sure?”
I just sat there, and we left.
If I could see what was about to happen, I never would’ve left Poplar Springs, or the CLASS I would’ve eventually Graduated with.
I would miss all of them very much.
They knew everything and loved me.
Don’t take people for granted, is the point of that one.