Horrible Habit

~ age seven ~


It’s early spring 1992. A Saturday morning. Dad fills the kitchen with the smell of pancakes and bacon. The smell woke me from my sleep.

     “Good morning Daddy, smells good.”

 I smile as I hug his hip.

      “You are just in time, grab a plate, can you put one together for your sister?” Dad asks with a slight smile.

      “Sure.” A perfect square of butter in the middle of each pancake with syrup drizzled on top with a couple strips of bacon on the side. Sleepily Olivia walks up to the counter rubbing her eyes.

      “Which one is mine?” She yawns.

      “You pick.” I smile. She grabs a plate and fork then slowly makes her way to the kitchen table. Climbs into her seat and starts shoveling in big pieces of pancake.

      “Don’t you two start a fight today. I have had enough of that shit this week!” Mom orders from the other room.

I bow my head as my smile melts away. The happiness is gone.

      “Honey they weren’t even talking. Here, we were just fixing breakfast. Why don’t you come and get some?”

Dad hands her a plate.

      “Just saying, they are endless and I’m not going to deal with that today.” Mom insists. My sadness is written across my face. Even as I try not to look at her. I want to cry.

     “Oh, you are so sensitive. Stop crying you are such a big baby.” Mom caught me. I start to tear up, though my sobs I try to eat quietly.

      “Oh, just stop.” Mom continues.

Now I couldn’t stop, the tears, they fall as I stuff a piece of buttery pancake into my mouth. It’s hard to breath.


A couple hours later, Mom is out shopping and I see Dad poring something white from a sandwich bag into the toilet. It’s the zipper kind we don’t even have those.

      “Dad, what is that?” I ask as I watch him standing over the toilet.

      “A horrible habit.” He responds.

      “Who’s, is it?” I ask.

      “Your mothers.” He says with resentment.

      “Oh, is it all gone now, the horrible habit?”  I ask innocently.

      “I hope so honey.” He flushes the toilet and washes his hands as though he is scrubbing grease off after working in the garage. Thinking nothing more of it, I go on playing with my toys.


Thank you for reading a part of chapter three.

 I don't want to give it all away.