Apr. 17, 2016


Good evening to all,

I hope everybody had a great weekend. The countdown continues, 17 more days to launch. My two older children, Anthony and Vanessa are flying into town this weekend from Dallas and San Francisco to visit their maternal Grandma and to say bye to their Dad!  The three of us, including my youngest Jonathan, will be together for a blowout party next Sunday! It is a rare occasion for us to be reunited, being so far apart from each other these days. I can’t wait!

My story left off as Dora and I, living in Phoenix with my sister, were ready to get our own place and start a new chapter with our two kids. In August of 83’ we had already saved a little money for an apartment, when Dora’s brother called from Tucson and told me he could get me a job at his place of employment. I was still waiting tables and Dora was unhappy at her job at McDonalds. We were delighted at the opportunity to return back home and be closer to both our families. My mother was living alone at the time, since all her seven kids had already flown the coop by then. She never did well living by herself and was happy to take us in until we found our own apartment.

We packed our bags and our kids and gratefully thanked my sister and brother in-law and headed back home. They were happy for us, and probably relieved to have their space and privacy back after 14 months. I was and still am eternally indebted to them for all they did. We were so excited driving back to Tucson as we pondered all the wonderful plans we dreamed about fulfilling. I went to work at a door manufacturing company for $4.50 an hour, she went to the local job service to seek employment. To her great fortune, she landed a job at the new National Semiconductor plant in town. She was overjoyed at the opportunity, and I for her. Now things were really looking up for the both of us we felt. But the joy would be short lived.

Dora was not happy staying at my mothers, and she quickly lost her zeal for her new job. Even after we rented our first apartment, she found herself struggling to maintain a positive outlook with anything or anybody. That would be a pattern that would haunt us for the next few years. I went through a rollercoaster ride of emotions with her trying to figure out not what made her happy, but what made her so unhappy about everything. She quit her good job after two years because she wanted to be a “stay at home” mom. I explained to her that if that was what she wanted, then money would be tight. She agreed and was willing adjust. Problem was, after a few months, then she was miserable, bored and we were broke. She then reluctantly went back to work and was miserable again.

That was a pattern she would repeat constantly for the next four years. Back and forth, job after job. It stressed me plenty and was the cause of much of our friction. I went along because I just wanted her to be happy. But happiness was the furthest thing from our life. She struggled with relationships outside of our own, alienating most of my family and hers.

I didn’t worry too much, since I was raised with so much chaos and dysfunction that it just seemed like a normal marriage and family. We fought all the time over the most trivial things and many times got physical with each other. A punch in the arm or a slap was not that uncommon. We were totally immature and got along almost like siblings or school ground kids. Yet we went on.

I for my part was not helping. I was controlling, domineering and unyielding. I lacked warmth, sensitivity and compassion for her emotional needs. I was not much better with the two kids either. The cycle was not being broken. I didn’t realize I was being such a detriment to my young family and was doing more harm than good. I did not have the skills or knowledge to be the kind of father and husband they deserved. Again, in my shallow thinking at that age, I was doing okay, as long as I was not being like my dad. That was all I had to compare it to. Nothing else.

Still we went forward. Not to say that there were never any good moments or that we never got along at times, but they were too few. My kids never went without the basic physical needs and they seemed to thrive and be happy children, despite their parent’s obvious deficiencies. I still never worried too much about our situation. I just felt like it was a normal marriage, and that someday we would outgrow all the childish drama.

Inside I only fell more deeply in love with my wife. And so did all the other boys. At 23, Dora was in full bloom. She attracted a lot of attention from her male coworkers and just ordinary guys on the street. Stares and catcalls were not unusual when we were out and about. She to my knowledge never initiated the attention and I had total trust in her fidelity. For I felt she had the same trust in me. I’ve never been the jealous type, even then. For me, it was a proud feeling of having such a beautiful mate and felt lucky to have her on my arm or in my car. I believed I didn’t deserve a woman this gorgeous. I felt like an ugly duck next to the beautiful swan!

Over time, her discontent with me and our situation only increased. She would tell in more intimate moments that she no longer was in love with me. She felt she missed out on all the fun of her young adulthood due to getting pregnant so early, and envied her friends for being able to go out and party. I would remind her that she had two children now, and that she had to live with her choices in life. That it was her who pursed the marriage, not me. I would tell her that she really DID love me, and that her depression would pass. I was naïve, and putting rose colored glasses on with ear muffs. I didn’t want to accept what she was telling me. The next morning she would apologize for her attitude and things would get better again for a while. She did that often.

In November of 1987 we threw ourselves a fifth year anniversary party. With both our family present, we tenderly exchanged gifts and kisses. Things were going well then, I thought.

The next spring, I landed a job at a new grocery chain in the meat dept. and Dora got a job at the competing chain store as a clerk. We were doing better financially, but were still dealing with our drama. The kids were 5 and 7 and were doing well in school. My mother once again was living alone and opened her house to us for the second time. This time we decided to take her up on her offer and use the opportunity to save some money for a down payment on our first house. That, Dora declared was the gist of her unhappiness. All she ever wanted was for us to own our own home, and now it looked like our dream was within reach!

That spring we planned a long awaited trip down to Mazatlán, Mexico. The five of us would drive down for two weeks and visit my mother’s sister. Dora said she always wanted to visit the much talked about sub-tropical city where my parents were born. We couldn’t wait for the trip. When August arrived we were just a week away from departing.  Out of nowhere Dora announced that her boss would not allow her the time off since she had recently been promoted to a new and higher position. I was disappointed, but understood. After all, she seemed to like her job for once. So we left without her.

For 12 days we were gone. I tried getting in touch with her constantly, but never got through. In 1988 there was no such thing as cell phones or internet, so catching her on the landline at home or at her work didn’t seem that disconcerting to me at the time. We never made contact, but that didn’t dampen the fun we were having in Mexico. Still it seemed strange.

On the night of August the 22nd my mother and my kids and I finally arrived home after a long 26 hour drive. We were exhausted from the road, but happy to have made it back in one piece. We were all ready to end the day, little did I know it would be the longest day of my life. By the time the sun rose the next morning. Our lives would be changed forever. For me, Anthony and Vanessa.

Have a good night friends, I have to get up early tomorrow for my first of three interviews this week!

Thanks for your support!


Apr. 16, 2016

Anthony and Vanessa 1983

Hi everybody out there!

Today is Friday, I hope everyone has the weekend off. I don’t!

I want to just jump back to where I left off previously with my tale. I have so much to add to the story, but time and space is limited. Im trying to keep the post at a reasonable length as suggested by the EXPERTS, so as not to ramble on and on with too many details. Please let me know if I need to adjust for your benefit!

Now that I had failed the test to qualify me for employment at the ship yard, I was out of ideas as to what to do next. I didn’t really have a plan B or any means to create one. We didn’t really fool any one trying to conceal the pregnancy from our families and the clock was once again ticking for Dora and I. She was in a desperate disposition back in Tucson and I had no other option but to work with my sister at McDonald’s again. I knew that I couldn’t follow the same pattern as before with the first baby, and now being 20, I was not going to get a pass from anybody anymore. I had to ‘Man-up” and take responsibility for my actions. But how? Working at McDonald’s for $4.35 an hour was not going to afford me any kind of livable wage. Especially with two kids now. To their credit, my big sisters took charge. One there in San Diego and the other one who was now living in Phoenix, with her new husband.

My sister Angela, who was always, and still is, my closes sibling and two years older than me, offered to take us in. She and her husband lived in a large four bedroom house, three of which were empty. I called Dora and told her about the offer. She immediately said yes, but feared telling her parents. Since they had become very much attached to Anthony and still had their doubts about me. She suggested we elope on a day they would be out of town, to avoid a scene. We picked a day and coordinated a plan with my sister’s help. Dora was so excited. She was finally going to get her wish of a united family.

For my part though, I was still a bit apprehensive about the whole scheme. Even though we had reconnected as a couple, and my feeling for her had resumed, a part of me still held back a total commitment to the cause. I silently viewed the endeavor as an experiment, on a trial bases. If things didnt pan out, I figured, we could just go our sparate ways.

On June 23rd 1982, I took the bus for the last time to Tucson. As it turned out both my mother and her parents were out of town for the weekend. My oldest sister picked me up at the station, and took me to get my mom’s car for the trip to Phoenix.  Neither parents knew of our plans, but both already knew of Dora’s pregnancy. It was hard to hide a seven month belly! They were just waiting for us to come clean. But eloping was not what they expected from us.

At 11 pm. I hugged my big sister good bye (I have five) with tears in my eyes and picked up Dora and 26 month old Anthony at her house. We had nothing to start a new life with, except for a few bags of clothes and $85 she had saved. But we had help from my sisters and a fresh start in a new city. And we had each other! It was quite a ride we had traveled since we first made eyes at each other that afternoon coming home from the track meet.

My sister and her husband both greeted us warmly and showed us our new rooms in their two story house. It was an exciting yet nervous time for the three of us. Especially for little Anthony. He was ripped from his environment overnight, and missed his grandparents tremendously the first few weeks. I quickly got a job at, you guessed it…McDonald’s! Meanwhile Dora got on welfare and food stamps. We felt very comfortable there and after the anger and resentment subsided on both sides of the family, everybody was happy! Dora’s parents were especially grateful with my sister and her husbands for taking us in. My friend Tony sold me his old lowrider for $400 and that became our first family car!

On August 14th of that year the world welcomed my one and only daughter! Vanessa Bayardo Romero weighed 8lbs, 15 oz. this big, beautiful, happy child was now ours to raise. She was all smiles, all the time!

When I saw her being born, I cried. I missed my son’s birth, and much of his first two years of his life, so I was determined not to let the something happen with my little princes! Something in me also changed with that event. Leading up to the final trimester, I was really enamored with Dora. She radiated through her pregnancy and I couldn’t help but draw closer to her like never before! It even surprised me.  Finally all the doubts and reservations about our ‘Experiment’ just floated away. I realized how much I really loved Dora and how much she loved me. I was finally ‘all in’ with this family!  Naturally the next step was to wed. We couldn't live in sin, now could we! Ha-ha! So we planned it.

On Nov. 4 th 1982, we exchanged vows at the Maricopa county court house. We both were so elated, but more so my new bride. She was the one who persevered and never lost hope that this day would someday arrive. It truly was what she wanted and now she had it! We had a small gathering at the house with the families and even my father and hers shared a few laughs! Life was finally shining on all four of us, we felt. The only way to go was up!

Dora went to work at another McDonald’s while my sister helped take care of the kids. She was at home pregnant with her own baby on the way. Meanwhile I started a better paying job as a waiter at a nearby Mexican restaurant.  We both worked hard and saved our money for an eventual place of our own someday.

Eventually the character flaws started to appear. The reality was that neither of us was well groomed to be married or to raise children at that age. Aside from the age factor, imagine a soldier being sent to the battle front without boot camp or basic training. I was, to put it mildly, ill-equipped to handle being a good husband and father to my new family.  Learned behavior was all we knew. We, or I were not really taught nor shown how to be good adults. We simply were just told to: ‘Behave’, ‘Be good’, ‘Be responsible’, ‘Be considerate’, and ‘Be kind and loving’ and so on. But rarely did we see it in action.

Although her parents were solidly united, and have been married up to now, Dora still had her share of dysfunctional traits. Her father was also an alcoholic and she grew up emotionally deficient. We quickly started to learn about each other’s faults and clashed over many issues, like the kids and money. We fought as passionately as we loved. And soon started to take account of injuries we caused each other emotionally.

I was not succeeding in breaking the cycle that my upbringing had saddled me with, even though I often blamed her for most of the troubles we were experiencing. Still in my mind, as long as I wasn’t a drunk or wife beater, like my father, I was doing well. I was only kidding myself.

In more rational moments, we attributed our friction to being house guest.  After almost a year in my sister’s house, we felt that our own space was what we needed in order to flourish as a couple. We appreciated the hand up from our family, but now we needed to spread our own wings. But would we be able to overcome the real challenges we were about to face as a husband and wife, and as parents of these two beautiful children. Time would soon tell.

Stay tuned for more of my black and blue saga! If you wish. Sunday I will resume my story.

Good night friends!


Apr. 15, 2016


Greetings to all,

Hoping life is good wherever you call home! I got home late again today, and the days are going fast leading up to the tour. My body aches from the masonry job we’ve been doing. Im getting too old to be playing with rocks and blocks all day. But I love building projects, and I enjoy the look on client’s faces as they see their homes and yards being transformed. The sense of accomplishment for me is deeply satisfying. But I dread being a sixty year old mason!

When I left off yesterday, I went to bed feeling a bit drained from my recollections of yesteryear with you good folks. I don’t want to come off too blue and dark when I share my past with everybody. And to be balanced, I do have many positive and happy memories stored in my mind from those days, both as a child and as teenager. But I do believe that it’s the difficult and heartbreaking experiences that forge and mold the best part of our character as we move along life’s journey.

So let me pick up where I left off my senior year. Dora was now home, pregnant and very heartbroken by my complete turnaround. Oh, and very angry with me too. She had every right to be. But I also felt I had a right to be scared and unsure of what to do next. After all, I was just 17 years old. I resisted the pressure from her, her parents and my own family, to do the “right thing’ by her. By that they meant marring her. In the meantime, the countdown ensued until our baby would be born.

The next spring on March the 11th 1980, the world was introduced to our new son, Mark Anthony Bayardo Romero. 7lbs, 11 ounces. Beautiful, healthy and unscarred by this imperfect world! Four days into my 18th birthday, and I was officially a father. It was surreal!  It was also conflicting as hell. The pressure increased even more from that point on. And I fought back even harder. The more everybody pushed me, the more distant I became. Especially my mother and older sister pushed me the hardest. In June of that year I graduated from Pueblo high, and was one of the few in my class to have their child in attendance!  I never had any intentions of furthering my education, so I went right to work with my mother in a sheet metal factory.

It was a pathetic, dead-end job. I made very little and still helped my struggling mother with what I could. I would drop by Dora’s house once in a while to see the baby, drop off some diapers and give her money for formula. It was unpleasant to say the least. I was not well received by her family, and we always ended up arguing over my whereabouts. I was unhappy and going nowhere.

After the New Year in 1981, my father called out of the blue and offered to put me through a trade course there at the local Jr. College Skill Center where he lived. He was then working as pipefitter at a shipyard and wanted me to learn the welding trade so he could help place me in a union position. My mother, of course was not happy with the idea. She was very attached to me, and didn’t want me to be so far from her. I also felt leery about being reunited with my estranged father. One of my older sisters was already living there and she urged me to take the opportunity. She also said I would be living with her, and not my dad, so that was the clincher for me.

One week later, I bought a $35 bus fare and boarded the grey doggie for California! I was afraid, nervous and excited about turning a new page. One of many I would turn over the course of my life.

My sister picked me up in a downtown station. I was 18, broke, scared and a father to a son I hardly knew. I left my mother behind in tears and Dora heartbroken. She was convinced by then that we were done. She started on her own path and was even dating by then. I didn’t have a problem with that, I was going miss my friends more. More than her or my son. I was ready to make something of myself.

I quickly adapted to my new surrounding and made new friends in class and at McDonald’s where I worked part time for my sister. I exceled with my welding course and enjoyed spending time alone. Something I still lavish to this day! I saw my father often and got to know him more than I ever had. He was still pretty much the same man my mom had ousted, but it was me who was maturing, so I saw him in a different light. He had fathered two more children from his time there, but still struggled to maintain a normal relationship with the two women who conceived my two new half-brothers.

After five months my welding course was finished. I received the highest marks and even got certified with a structural steel classification! I felt so proud of myself and was ready to hit the pavement and knock on doors! The problem was, by that point, I was homesick and wanted to return back to Arizona. My job prospects were better if stayed, which my father would have preferred, but I felt a pull from my mother and her guilt ridden pleas I got every time I spoke to her, or read her letters. I also wanted to be close to my friends who I missed tremendously. I figured with my new credentials, I could land a job anywhere. So that July I packed my bags, my certificates and jumped on the greyhound once again.

Boy was I ever wrong! Tucson and Arizona are not welder friendly places. I applied all over town and beyond. I skinny 19 year old with no experience was not what companies were looking for, even if they were looking to hire. Truth was, no one was hiring in 81’ and the new Reagan-omics were crushing the economy then too. After two months of nonstop searching, I gave up. Depressed and broke once again, I felt like that whole Trade school/California experience was just a big waste of time. I should have listened to my father for once, I lamented. I for the first time in my life, and since then I did absolutely nothing with myself. I felt aimless and had no clue what to do next. I saw my son only a few times, and he had grown so much in my absence. My love and affection for him increased a bit but Dora and I were now just friends...so we thought.

She was working at a downtown dinner at night supporting herself and Anthony. I was in no shape mentally or financially to be of any use to them. One cold night in December, I was out and about with my friend Tony T. I had too much to drink, which was rare, and was feeling down a bit. I suddenly got the urge to see Dora and asked Tony to take me to her job. I walked in the door about 10pm. buzzed and walking funning. She was surprised to see me, but I could tell she was happy that I showed up. She told me she was getting off soon and so I asked her if she would take me home after work. She agreed and I sent Tony on his way. She gave me the keys to the car, and I waited for her to finish her shift.

And as I sat there looking at her through the windows of the restaurant, all the old feelings for her slowly resurfaced. I guess they had always been there, I had just locked them away for the past two years. She never looked so beautiful, now at 18, she was blossoming into a woman. Even in her diner outfit she shined. I wasn’t drunk, if anything the epiphany sobered me up. When she clocked out and got in the car the first thing she asked me was why did I show up unannounced? I told her the truth:  “I miss you and I wanted to see you.”  My honest answer touched her. She asked me if I was in a hurry to get home and if I wanted to stop at the park and talk about things. I was delighted at the opportunity.

We parked in a dark secluded spot and chatted awhile in a polite, cordial manner. But the beast within was fighting to escape its dungeon. We had repressed our feelings for too long now, especially me, and before she dropped me off that night, we would revisit the road of love and romance we once had so passionately travelled! Electrifying, steamy and unprotected, we clashed.  It was like we never parted! I walked in at 2am and slept like a log. The emotional weight I had been carrying felt lighter. My outlook seemed clearer and my focus was now redirected again. Or was this just a flash in the pan? I thought. Or was it  just a trip down memory lane for two lonely souls? Either way it felt good. Oh so good, I pondered as I laid awake in bed the next morning.

We talked more often after that, and my visits with my son became more pleasant. Still I needed to do something for work. It was now February of 82’ and I had been unemployed for 5 months. Then one day my father called me and said he had arraigned a testing interview for me at the shipyard. He said the job paid $11 an hour if I got hired. But I had to leave soon! I had no other options, I felt. So I borrowed some money, kissed my mom, Dora and the baby goodbye and you guessed it, I jumped back on the bus to California and headed west again.

Two days later I was shaking in my boots waiting for the results of my welding stress test. A lot was on the line for me, and I felt I didn’t do well. I was out of practice and hadn’t welded in almost 8 month. As things would have it, I failed miserably. There went my chance for a good job. I was crushed and my father was too. So instead of returning home, I decided to look for a job there in San Diego. By that time the sense of urgency had increased dramatically. Why? Because Dora was now four months pregnant with our second child! Now I felt a pressure that I could not have imaged one could ever feel at my young age. Getting a girl knocked up once, ok. But twice? What were we to do now?

Stay tuned. If you like.  I’ll pick it up next time.

Thanks, Juanjohn

Apr. 14, 2016


Hello friends,

Hoping all had a wonderful day at whatever you do. I’m just about done with a backyard putting green! You can see the pics on my album page in a day or two, of you like.

Last post I covered my family history up to my high school years. Writing about ones upbringing can be difficult for some, and therapeutic for others. As for me, it’s both. Many of you I suppose, have wonderful childhood memories, and some I assume, prefer to not even go there. There is a saying that was popular a few years back: “It is what it is”.  I really hated that phrase, and people over used it all the time! But I guess it was meant for situations like my childhood.

Unlike many who can’t escape the baggage that they bring to adulthood, or break the vicious circle of whatever dysfunction surrounded them, I believed that I was the exception to that rule. At 16, I already knew that I didn’t want to follow in my father’s footsteps. And the best way I could prove it was not to ever become an alcoholic, like him. Looking back now, I had no clue how ill prepared I was to enter the adult world. Especially relationships with the opposite sex. Dora was going to open that door.

After the race, we talked for a while by the stadium. Then I walked her to the end of the school gate. I don’t even remember what was said, but I still remember the feeling of being in a trance. I had up to that point, many crushes with a variety of the cute girls in school, but this was no crush! Never having the courage to ever approach a girl, or even ask one out, I always loved from a safe distance. Silent and alone. In complete anonymity.

Yes, there had been a couple girls, one my freshman year, and one my sophomore year, who showed some interest in the “Johnny man” but I did not reciprocate. I had a serious crush since that eight grade on Susie S, I will call her, but she was waaay, above my league! Beautiful, smart and humble, Susie liked me as a FRIEND! I Hated that! She dated only jocks and handsome pricks! Just kidding.

But in a twenty-four hour period, Dora turned my life upside-down. She gave me her number to her landline phone (Yes Don, I know what a landline is!) and we talked for hours on end! We shared the same lunch hour, and met after practice. We could not get enough of each other. We both dropped our friends and our normal school routine to spend every minute together as much as possible. We quickly found that we had many things in common, like many of the victims of that teenage disease, puppy love experience!

For starters, we both were born in Nogales, Mexico. We both had six siblings, and were both were the middle child. As a matter a fact, unbeknownst to us, our parents knew each other casually and our fathers did not get along. 

 I couldn’t have cared less! This beautiful creature was enamored with me, and I with her. I felt feelings and symptoms I had never experienced before. All my thoughts, all the time, were totally focused on her! My stomach fluttered inside, my body tingled, and my palms sweat whenever we saw each other, or talked on the phone! It was far greater than I ever imagined love could ever feel. I used to see other kids hold hands or make out in the hallways all the time. I dreamed of one day, having a special girl of my own. And now it was happening to me! But what was really rocking my world was her beauty. Or the lack of mine. Here was a girl at a level far superior to mine, and she was in love with me. How lucky can I be? I don’t deserve her. I thought. I would later find out that the feeling of not being worthy would haunted for many more years to come.

So the relationship blossomed. It was perfect. We rolled through the first five or six weeks in total bliss! We found no faults with each other and didn’t care what other kids said or thought. My younger sister, who was in the same grade was not too happy with me, and tried to dissuade me with some insider intelligence. She told me Dora had a ‘reputation’ and that she would break my heart in a second, the minute she found someone better. I blew her off as an over protective sister.

The truth was that, unlike me, at fourteen Dora had already experienced her first kiss. She had already had a few hallway romances and was very popular with the boys her age. That was understandable considering her appearance. Again, I was not deterred by the revelations. I loved her, and she loved me back. That’s all that mattered to me then.

Then things started to move too fast for the both of us. First we began to skip classes in order to spend more time together. Logically then, our grades began to suffer. I was never a Rhodes Scholar, but my Grade point plummeted. From A’s & B’s to D’s & F’s in one semester. From 72 to 213, my class ranking dropped. Sadly, I didn’t care. But even worse, as the end of the school year approached, we started taking liberties with each other’s bodies. The curiosity was, to say the least, intoxicating.

Because we spent a lot of time together, unsupervised, we no longer were content with kissing or holding hands. She initiated the light petting, and I introduced the heavy version. The next thing we knew, we were totally out of control. Both of us riding on a sexual deviant highway, where no rules existed, and all exits were ignored! I wish I could blame the lack of education, namely the ‘birds and the bees’ lecture neither of us ever received, mostly due to the cultural taboos that abounded in that era. Maybe if I would have had a father, or big brother who took interest in my life at those crucial times, things might have been different for me, or for boys like me. I will never know. The passion, and the desire discovered or awoken in me had no shut off button! Inevitably, that road we were on came to a crash.

During the summer vacation, we would sneak away and see each other as much as possible. In September of 79’ I started my senior year, and she her sophomore. We didn’t realize it then, but Dora was already two months pregnant.  Obviously, she skipped a couple periods and the hand writing was on the wall! We hid it from our teachers, my mother and her parents as long as we could, but ultimately we came clean with the news. It was a shock to many, but not all. Still our parents went through the normal stages of anger, disappointment, and betrayal. Both sides of our families had already experienced teenage pregnancies by that time, so it was not new ground we were breaking.

Then our worlds changed, or mine did. Again. She decided to quit school, I believe to avoid the shame and embarrassment. But for me, I now was able to see clearly the path that I was on for the last ten months. And being a senior, I wanted to end my last year on a good note. I rededicated myself to fixing my grades and to reconnect with my friends who I had ignored the last school year. I was also discovering new friends and new girls. Meanwhile, Dora tried to hang on to me from a distance, and with prodding from her family, talked about getting married after graduation. That scared the *%$#! out of me, now that I had my head on straight! I made one mistake, I reasoned, getting hitched would be another. But more profoundly, I was changed by all the events from my experience with Dora. None more so than my confidence level. Now as a senior, I was strutting my stuff to all the ladies! So being married and raising a family at 17, was the furthest thing on my mind!

I had a blast my last year of school, and hardly ever saw Dora through her pregnancy. The more she tried to hang on to what we had, the more I pulled away. Even now, some 37 years later, I can’t quite explain or figure out what happened to me that made me totally fall out of love so fast with her. Maybe the responsibilities facing me made me turn and run away, like a scared little rabbit, or the new found popularity with my school mates drove me to bigger, better options, I don’t know.  But as it turned out, the love I lost for Dora, much to her delight, I rediscovered a couple of years later. 

And that friends, I will discuss tomorrow. I was back and forth weather to post a pic of Dora, but I decided to give you a visual to connect you better to the story.

Thanks for your listening ear, good night!


Apr. 12, 2016

At Grandma's house- 1966