Content warning: Mentions/themes of death and mental health issues
Name: Timmy Calhoun
Date: Friday, Decimbur 15, 1995
Resolution #1: Be more great full
Please explain: That's what my aunt Lola tells me all the time. That I should be more great full. That means when some one does some thing nice for you, you should say Thank You.
I do say it some times. Like when Suzy Brown holded the door for me yesturday after lunch. And also last Krismus when Santa got me a new toy car. It was brite blue, like the one on the TV comershul, and it moved really fast across my living room floor! I don't have that car any more, but I asked Momma to say Thank You to Santa when I got it. Grownups talk to each other alot. I tryed to get my little brother Larry to say Thank You with me, but I think it's only grownups that like to speak alot, not babys, so he just drooled.
Any way, Thank You for teaching us about resolutions and for making us rite this list in class today, Ms. Newman. You did some thing nice for me, cause I hate homework but I don't hate classwork that much. And I like my desk by the window, and I like having quiet time. We never have quiet time at home. My aunt Lola is all ways talking on the phone. Even after bedtime. Some times, late at night, I can hear her wispering my name.
Resolution #2: Wash hands after useing the bathroom
Please explain: That's also some thing my aunt Lola likes to tell me. That if you don't wash your hands after useing the bathroom, you can pick up a lot of germs and get sick. Like how I got those chicken pocks all over my body in Septimbur, and I stayed home and itched myself and eated hot chicken soup for a week. My aunt says it's cause I didn't wash my hands real good.
One time she even told me that if you got too many germs in your body, you could "die." But that was a wile ago. She doesn't like to use that word any more.
But I just don't like the soap in aunt Lola's house. She makes her own soap and it smells sad, like wet butter. I like Momma's soap more, the kind that smells like her, milk and honey.
I think maybe my aunt Lola is rite tho, cause every Saturday we visit Momma at the Western State Hospital and there are alot of sick people there. The first time we visited, I asked the nurse how many people they had and she said there were over 800 beds! And one time I even saw a man with his arms tyed across the front of his jacket. He must have had some really bad chicken pocks and couldn't stop itching himself. I know how that feels. It must be hard to eat soup with no hands tho.
Some times when we're visiting Momma at the hospital, we hear some of the other people yelling. Some times it's just non-cents shouting, and some times they say words Momma asked me to never ever use. One time I even yelled back. I told some guy that he should just wash his hands. That if he did, maybe he would get better and then he could go home to his family.
Then I told Momma the same thing a few minutes later.
Resolution #3: Be nicer to Momma
Please explain: This isn't some thing aunt Lola says to me. It's some thing I came up with on my own, so I know I can do it.
The day Momma left our house to move into the 800 bed hospital and I moved in with my aunt Lola, she borrowed me her old Walkman. It looks like a brick and it only plays slow grownup music called jazz, but she lets me take it to the hospital so I don't hear all the people shouting. I still hear them, but I pretend not to.
On Saturdays when we go to see Momma, I sit in the chair by her bed and listen to my jazz. Her room smells like the swimming pool we use to go to on sunny days. My aunt Lola sits in the chair on the bed's other side and talks to Momma and touches her arm with her wet butter hands. I think that's also why she borrowed me her Walkman, so she could talk to Momma about me and not have me hear. I let her think that. I'm good at pretending.
Momma isn't like the other people in the hospital who shout. She doesn't talk, to me or my aunt Lola or the nice ladys in the blue pajamas who all ways come in and see if we're doing OK. Her eyes are all ways open, but her mouth never is. And cause she all ways use to tell me it was good manners to speak when spoken to, I also don't say much to her besides hello and goodby. And the one time I told her to wash her hands.
But next year I can try to be nicer to her.
I can talk to her about school and let her use the Walkman when all the songs are done and I have to go back to the start.
I can let her know how much I love her.
I can let her know I'm sorry.
Maybe she would be great full if I did that. Maybe she would say Thank You.
Resolution #4: Pick up my toys
Please explain: This won't be hard. I don't have that much toys any more. I still have my Etch-a-Sketch. I use to be bad at it, but now if I turn the buttons real good, I can all most draw a cat or the sun or Momma's house. I also have my Woody doll, the one that I brung to show and tell last month. He doesn't say Thank You but he can say other stuff if you pull his string, like Reach For the Sky.
That's all my toys now.
My aunt Lola won't let me have cars any more. I don't get why, cause she wasn't there when it happuned. It was just me and Momma.
We were the ones in the kichen making dinner when my little brother Larry scooted himself across the living room, picked up my brite blue Santa car, and put it in his mouth. It was me who went to grab him for dinner and found him like that, with his face the same color as my car. It was me who called 911 when Momma was crying and screaming and looping her arms around Larry's tummy and pushing until the amburlamps showed up.
My aunt Lola wasn't there at all and she still won't let me have another toy car.
I miss Momma.
Resolution #5: Stop asking my aunt Lola when I can go home
Please explain: Do I have to?