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What was your room like? Linda Sura Liza(1) lsura@pottsville.infi.net When my mother re-married, my brother and I each had a bedroom upstairs. When my mother made the announcement that I was going to be a "Big Sister" and my brother was going to be a "Big Brother", we knew that the sex of the new baby would determine who would get coveted biggest bedroom.
We lived in a small Cape Cod style house and whenever I had to get to my room, I would have to go through my brother's room. He was very disappointed when my mother gave birth to a baby girl. I was so happy because it meant I would get to keep the biggest room, even if it meant I would have to share. I figured the kid was small, how much room could she take up?
Thinking back, it was not the room she took up. It was the space. Mine. I tolerated her though. I felt like she needed me to show her the ropes.
My mother was obsessed with matching furniture up in "the girls' room." I had no say in what color I wanted my room to be or what kind of furnishings. We had matching bureaus, matching beds, sheets. bedspreads, desks. The only difference was that I had the side of the room with the window. I pushed my desk up against that window and spent many hours just staring out of it just so I did not have to see double.
When I was disciplined by my step-father, I was always ordered to go up to my room afterward. I would have to spend days there. I was allowed to go to school but that was my only social contact. The rest of the time I had to eat alone and do my homework up there for the duration of my punishment.
When I got older, I would steal the liquor from my step-fathers supply and hide that in my room.
When I was physically hurting after being punished, I would open the bottle and it would numb the pain.
I stopped looking at my room as a prison. I began to realize its value as a haven from my parents.
That window in the dormer provided me with a way to mentally escape my confines. I started writing then. Long compositions then poems. First words of anger and frustration, later, words of understanding. I am still looking for truth. I am still writing.



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