Living in a relatively dangerous neighborhood, the best part of growing up in Newark, NJ was being raised by my grandmother and great grandmother. We lived in a three story home, with a finished basement. There were five bathrooms and 11 bedrooms. My favorite part of all was being afforded the luxury of having a backyard, with a beautiful garden, large enough for me to get lost in.
On the days I allowed my imagination to run wild, I wandered off into the garden, envisioning myself as a princess, in charge of a palace, ruling all things. Other times, I imagined that I was a chef, and the best one yet, each time I grew fruits and vegetables.
On quiet days where our home wasn't busy and loud, with laughter echoing from drunk aunts and older family members, I was easily lost in my thoughts trying to keep myself entertained.
At some point, we had a cat named Marble that I happened to be extremely scared of. She was a Kitten when I was about three or four years old. Every time someone would walk past the kitten she’d run from under the bed to scratch their ankles.
Suddenly, I reached my breaking point where I became fed up with myself for being afraid of this tiny little animal. My way of combating my fears was to abuse the cat. Ironically, I was also encouraged to continue this abuse since I never got in trouble for it.
One time, I threw the cat out the window of the attic, curious as to if it actually had 9 lives. Then, I dragged the cat to the garden, spun it around by its tail causing it tremendous pain and nausea, and let it free into the bushes. Another time, I locked it in the dryer in the basement. No one asked about the cat all day, causing me to forget what I had done. Since no one seemed to be concerned with the whereabouts of the cat, it fueled me to find many ways to put her through hell. And it was simply to fulfill my desires of being entertained.