Status: active



Sin is what killed my father and it is sin that will kill me. Full circle.

My father, Rick Spencer, cheated on my mother with a neighbor, and not more than a week later, his car tires slid on black ice and flipped over 3 times. He was killed instantly.

At his funeral, my mother didn’t cry. When I did, she told me to 'cut it out' and that my tears wouldn’t bring him back.

"Your father committed the sin of adultery. God gave him what he deserved. Let your father’s death be a lesson to you, Parker. Never go against God."

She said this loud enough for my father’s mother, my grandmother I had never met before, to lash out at us and get us thrown out of the ceremony. I haven’t seen my grandmother, or anyone from my dad’s side of the family since.

It probably goes without saying that my mother and I aren’t very popular. We've gone to the same church every Sunday for almost 10 years, yet we haven’t made one friend in our congregation, but that by no means mean we don’t know everyone’s name and business.

"Did you see what that Shirley Higgins wore today?" my mother would ask though a cloud of smoke (cigarettes were her only vice) while driving back home from mass.

"Yes. She looked lovely," I'd answer.

"She looked like a tramp, Parker," she'd correct me, flicking ashes out of her window, "I'm surprised God didn’t strike her right down for walking into his house like that. No wonder her husband left her."

"Mr. Higgins left her? How do you know?"

"When's the last time you’ve seen Mr. Higgins in church?"

I thought for a second, "...Not in a while, I guess."

"Exactly. And she also hasn’t been wearing her wedding ring either. Mr. Higgins is definitely no longer in the picture. She’s probably wearing that tiny skirt to try and catch some fella’s eye," she’d scoff, "Like any church-going man would want her. No man wants a slut."

We’d turn our noses up at everyone for everything. That’s how I knew how to separate who was rotten and hellbound, and who was worthy and holy.

The "rotten" deserved no sympathy.

When Cady Cordoni, a junior with thin eyebrows and even thinner clothes, fell pregnant, her friends put together a bake sale to earn her some extra cash for the baby. They went around the cafeteria with tupperware containers filled with color dyed cookies and brownies. When they stopped to my table, they told me I’d be giving to a good cause.

I reached into my bag to pull out a few dollars, when my my mother's voice echoed in my head.

That girl deserves nothing. She couldn’t keep her legs close, and this is the price she’ll have to pay. Give. Her. Nothing.

I retracted my hand quickly, “I-I don’t have any cash on me.”

"You we're just about to pull some money out," one of the girls snarled, “Why'd you change your mind?”

"I...just don't think Cady deserves my help. Or anyone's. She made her bed and now she should sleep in it." I said softly, looking down at my lunch tray, avoiding eye contact.

"You’re such a stuck up bitch, Parker." The other girl spit, my heart dropping with her insult. The girls stomped away, heading to the next table.

Picking up my books and backpack, I made a beeline for the restroom. I pushed opened a stall and plopped down on the toilet seat and let the tears run down my cheeks. I reached for the small, gold crucifix hanging from my necklace and rubbed it, silently asking God if I done the right thing.

So, I guess you can only imagine how I felt when only a few weeks later I was holding my own pregnancy test in my hand, and saw the symbol that reminded me of the one that hung from my chest.

a little.


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