You used to believe in Santa Claus, God and the Easter Bunny. The details are admittedly vague, but you are certain that you must have. You were once a little girl who wore prairie skirts, braided her hair, and believed toys were as much fun as they looked in commercials. You amassed a huge collection of Barbie Dolls and wanted to be Wonder Woman when you grew up. Should you happen to survive a fantastic, explosive accident, becoming the Bionic Woman would have been even better. You had roller skates with orange wheels and a bike with a banana seat that you would only ride so far that your house stayed in sight.
You tripped over a rock while skating in your driveway and broke your wrist. Later that summer, you watched your dog get run over by a car. The tire split her right down the middle. One day at recess, your best friend broke the necklace your mother gave you by yanking it so hard that it made your neck bleed. She told you with a smile that it was “on accident.” Your aunt, who you think is cool and beautiful, marries a douche bag. The toys you asked Santa for were actually in your mother’s bedroom closet a full two weeks before Christmas and they weren’t as much fun as they looked in the TV commercials.
You learn that when someone says they are praying for you, the authentic meaning is that the person praying has no intention of actually helping. It is simply convenient for them because it alleviates them from guilt while they sit on their asses, relishing in an undeserved buzz of superiority.
Sometimes your brain replays the You-Tube video of the woman who put a cat in a garbage can, closed the lid and walked away. She didn’t realize a surveillance camera was recording her. The fact that evil people surround you and will do terrible things when they think they can get away with it freaks you out.
The gods of irony have a laugh at you as they prove that lightening can strike the same place more than once and rocks do fall from the sky. You know Chicken Little was not crazy. You are the Forrest Gump of your own little universe and occasionally bad luck for the people who get too close to you.
You learn that evil masquerades as normal while eccentricity represents honesty. You realize the benefits of believing again in Santa, God, or an egg-laying rabbit, but your brain will no longer accept the imaginary as truth. You live in an outrageous episode of Dateline that no one else is watching. You become old enough to learn many answers, yet not so old that you have forgotten the questions.
You become the only person in a room who doesn’t react to the sound of glass breaking. Your limbic system has vast experience and has mastered the art of selective refinement. You can herd cats without breaking a sweat. You can’t remember the last time something actually shocked you. People whisper behind your back that they don’t know how you always stay so calm. They don’t realize you grew up to be Wonder Woman.