The One Where We Stop a Child Predator

**Public disclaimer: these decisions I made were based solely on allegations I had seen reported on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat, and are written as to express the opinions of myself and my brother, not Royse City or anyone else associated with the premises of it. I feel as though my decisions were what were right, in case anything were to happen. This is just my truth, and my truth only. Things may be different to others. Enjoy.**

      You never think that it will happen to your town. Someone says “child predator” and everyone thinks movies and documentaries, never real life situations involving you or anyone you know. This past week, I felt as if I was living in a Criminal Minds episode. Where’s Spencer Reid when you really need him? 

     Royse City, Texas is an extremely small town where the most criminal thing to ever happen was a murder-suicide a while back. We aren’t very crime driven, but since we are so small, it is easy to know a newcomer when they appear. This past week, a strange vehicle was spotted and instantly talked about in a public group on Facebook after he was found in a kid’s park trying to lure children to his vehicle with stuffed animals he had lined in the inside of his car.

      My brother and I are apart of this Facebook group and instantly took notice of it. We were freaked out that it would, first of all, happen in our town, and second of all happen at all. The man was seen at our local Splash Pad water park, where dozens of kids play at everyday. It’s creepy. It sends shivers down my spine.

(The original posts we saw)


     A few days after this initial post was made, we had some running around to do. My brother, our friend Alexa, and I were caught in some traffic on the road that leads right by the Splash Pad. He had just made a remark about how relaxing the water looked trickling down on all of the kid’s backs. I look up and see the truck sitting there in the back of the parking lot almost instantly.

     “Oh my gosh…” I gasp. “That’s that truck, Andrew. That creep who lures kids with stuffed animals, that’s his truck is it not?”

      Andrew and Alexa proceed to squint to the distant Splash Pad. Neither of them can tell at this point, and traffic has us bumper-to-bumper at about 2 miles an hour. In the midst of their confusion and the slow traffic, I find the time to pull up the Facebook post and compare trucks. By the time I do, we have made it to the entrance, and Andrew and Alexa gasp in unison. Without hesitation, he slams on the breaks and whips in to the parking lot. 

     Sure enough, it is him. The truck. The license plate. He’s there, and in the flesh, just parked at the back of the parking lot. My heart starts racing and I feel sick. Sick in a way you never, ever want to feel.  

     He isn’t alone, however. There is a woman parked next to him, and she is sitting with him in his car.

      “Taylore..” Andrew says to me. And before he can even tell me to get out my phone, my camera app is pulled up.

 (Picture taken by me.)

    The woman doesn’t stay long. They talk for a while before she gets out of his truck, and pops her trunk open. And then he climbs out of his truck. And I go numb with fright. Andrew yells at me to take pictures, to take videos of him, but all I can do is just sit and watch him. 

     He is scary. He walks with a limp. The man opens his tailgate and removes a white trash bag filled with stuffed animals. He wearily walks to the lady’s car and stuffs the bag into her trunk, and goes to walk away, holding on to his back as he does. Before she closes it, he turns and snatches a teddy bear that is sticking out of the top of the bag and holds it like a child missing his mother. He grins. The man grins. 

     The woman drives away and the man climbs back into his truck.

     I want to be sick.

 (Picture taken by me.)

     It is a Tuesday afternoon in June in Texas, AKA it is blazing hot outside. The Splash Pad is swarming with children of all ages and their exhausted parents. That is the first thing I take note of upon my examination of the park itself. I’m too scared to look over at the red truck that sits to my left again.

     The second thing that catches my attention is the children running around on their own in the parking lot. They are in their swimsuits. Some of them old. Some of them as young as diaper ages. They are no adults within at least 20 yards from them. They keep running in between cars and disappearing from my sight, forcing my heart into my stomach every time that they do.  I find the courage to look at the man again and I look just in time to watch as he is lowering his passenger seat down to watch the children run around.

     “He’s watching them. Oh my god, he’s watching them.” Andrew says over and over again with his own choice of swears each time inserted wherever he likes. 

     I’m rocking back and forth with my head between my knees, trying to calm myself down enough to make an executive decision. “I know. I know. Just stop telling me that, okay? What should we do?”

     “I don’t know, take a baseball bat to his car?”

     We all know Andrew is smarter than that. 

     I sit up and breathe. “Like the post said, everyone has called the police hundreds of times. If we call, they will just come and tell us that he isn’t doing anything wrong by just sitting here. But he’s clearly watching them and enjoying his time by doing so.”

     “If he tries to approach one of these kids, you best bet I’m not staying in this car for one second.” Alexa then says.

     We sit in silence for the next few minutes, watching him and watching as the kids run around. I imagine if I were a parent sitting on one of the benches, watching their kid playing, not having a single clue that there was a child perpetrator just yards away from me, enjoying watching and seeing my child in their bathing suit. Thinking of the innocence in their minds absolutely killed me.

     “If I were one of those parents I would want to know. I would want someone to tell me.” I say.  “None of them have any idea that he is just sitting there.”

     “So what should we do?” 

     I unbuckle my seatbelt. “We have to go tell them. We can’t just have them sit there not knowing.” 

     “Okay, but you’re doing all of the talking, Miss I Have a Solution for Everything.” Andrew says, his eye still on the man.

     Within seconds, the three of us are out of the car and walking towards the Splash Pad. I feel his eyes burning on us as we do and I wonder if he knows that we know. We can’t decide who to start talking to, or how to start. I decide to pull up the Facebook post to make my life a lot easier., I approach a friendly looking woman sitting on one of the benches. 

     “Excuse me, ma’am. Do you have children playing here right now?” 

     She looks up at me and smiles. “Yes, I do.”

     I sit down next to her and explain the Facebook post and the suspicions on the man in the red truck sitting in the back of the parking lot as we speak. She gasps and looks for her child. When she finds her, she thanks me dearly and explains that she is actually the wife of the high school principal and that she comes here with her kids a lot. She says thank you about five more times and we walk to the next family.

     The sickening feeling started to go away with more people I reached out to. I talked to at least ten parents that day, each of them so relieved to know about it. Some of them left the park immediately. Here is the scariest part of it all:

     None of them knew.

     I no longer felt responsible for anything there at the park that day. If I had logged onto Facebook that night and seen a child had been abducted, I could never live with myself.

      As we are walking to our car, the man is watching us this time instead of the prancing little kids. I feel all of the hairs on my skin stand up and do a shake. Andrew can’t unlock the car fast enough it seems.  

     The man drives off, and before I know it, Andrew is following him. I’m shouting at him to stop, but he says he wants to make sure he never goes back to that park ever again. He follows him at a distance, but close enough to make sure he doesn’t decide to turn around and go back just because we are gone. The man goes to Denny’s and parks there.

     He hasn’t returned to the Splash Pad since.
     This whole situation could have turned out extremely different in multiple ways. I don’t encourage anyone to ever approach someone you think could be a child predator, or any predator at all for that matter. 

       On the other hand, if you feel in your gut that you need to do something about a situation that could possibly turn out badly, listen to what that feeling says. You feel it for a reason. 

       No offense to Andrew or Alexa, but I definitely would have preferred to work on this case with Spencer Reid instead. 

     Call me Detective Tay, I guess!
Until next time,

(Detective)Tay❤

You Are Too Alive (Suicide Prevention)

You roll over in the morning, your eyes aflutter with distant dreams of the previous night. You breathe in your first breath of air into your lungs, readying them for the hours to come. And it is beautiful, whether you know it or not.

If you open your blinds, daylight falls through the slits and cracks and onto your face, warming your skin to the touch.  Beautiful without having to try.

As you go downstairs, your mother greets you with the same, lovely smile she has greeted you for years. Only, it seems to grow lovelier with her age. She wants to know how you slept. She wants to know if you believe that the test in 4th period will be easy, and you tell her of course because you can’t let her down. And she smiles and smiles, and she is beautiful.

At school, your friends greet you with their cynical commentary and obnoxious laughter, but you love every minute of it because without them school days would drag by. You see the way their smiles form in the depths of their cheeks and glide across their lips like it is the most natural way in the world. And they are beautiful, even in the times of gossip and sorrow.

Your favorite class period is spent in the auditorium, rambunctious chatter echoing through the acoustics and you fall more in love with the lights above your head every time you step in place. For one small moment you wish you didn’t have to spend any more time rehearsing the same damn lines over and over, but you couldn’t. you wouldn’t. trade the moment for anything in the world. Your monologue protrudes through the room, with beautiful written all over it.

And the hallways. Cramped and crowded and noisy and smells of puberty. Regardless, the carpet welcomes your steps, and people stop to wave hello to you, even when your hands are filled with binders and papers and note cards and snacks you forgot to put away at the bell. You walk it now with the routine of friends always by your side. And the hallway is beautiful in itself, because it knows all of your secrets. All of the jumping, stressing, running, rushing, sobbing, hollering, skipping, talking, scolding. It sees the parts of you that aren’t always beautiful.

Class never receives a dull moment when you consistently raise your hand. If you know that x equals a number, or that the inventor of electricity was a genius. Even on your worse days, they rely on you for answers that only you can begin. You’re beautiful. Class is beautiful. It is all beautiful.

You come home to a house smelling from top to bottom with scents of dinner. You sit down with your family. Dad who had a rough day. Mom who continues to smile. And your siblings who always crack down their inspiring comedies. And from third person you see everyone laughing and conversing on politics. From the inside you can’t wait to fall asleep, but on the outside it is beautiful.

You make it to your room and stuff yourself in with the thick comforter and thin sheets. They envelope you as if they were made to fit your weary body. And you sigh the sigh of relief and wondering. And as you turn off your lights, your mind, your body, your beauty radiates with excitement for awakening tomorrow morning.

But what if you didn’t?

What if you decided that whatever going through your mind had become enough for you to handle?

You didn’t roll over the next morning, because of the previous night’s endeavors. The fresh air in your lungs never was gifted to you, and the world loses some beauty.

You never stood up to open your blinds. Your skin remains cold, instead of warmed with the brilliance of the sun, and the world loses some beauty.

Your mother was smiling as she usually does. Humming to herself a song of great love. But she never heard your feet touch the wood of the floor this morning. So she goes to check on you. She never gets over what she finds. And her smile never returned, and the world loses some beauty.

At school, your friends wait for you. When you don’t show by the first sound of the bell, they figure that you had car trouble. You’ll be there soon. You’ll be back in time for lunch, for the latest gossip. You’ll be there. But you won’t be. And the world loses some beauty.

Your favorite class in the auditorium is silent, because now, your siblings have been removed from school for the day, and word has spread about the terrible thing you have done. And your director is hiding behind her desk. And the students arent rambunctious. They don’t dance. They don’t sing. They don’t laugh. They cry. They cry a lot.The lights are off, and the stage remains solemn. Other students are coming to this class to find the last piece of you that you left. They’re trying to piece it together.  But they can’t, and the world loses some beauty.

The hallways remain as cramped and crowded as they always are, but they are moving slowly. There are whispers about you from classmates who barely knew you. Is this true? They wouldn’t dare do such a thing. But you did. And your friends don’t walk the normal routine, because it is impossible to be normal anymore without you here. They picture at any moment for you to run around the corner and catch up with them, to skip and holler and converse. But you won’t be joining them. And the world loses some beauty.

Class is dull. Because rather than the smiling person who always sat, there is a desk that reeks of emptiness. Your teacher refuses to teach, because who else would raise their hand? And the world loses some beauty.

At home, there is no dinner. There is no table-talk. There is no smiling Mom. Your dad comes home early, and for the first time ever, he cries. He cries so hard. And the dogs wander about, wondering when you’re going to prance through the door. Your siblings don’t say anymore jokes, because they can’t comprehend that you’re gone. And the world loses some beauty.

Tonight, no one enters your room. They don’t want to remember. They want it locked up forever, your comforter becoming incredibly lonely with every passing day that you don’t return to envelope in. They miss you. And the world loses some beauty.
Live.

Because you are so alive. With the sun radiating onto your skin, or enjoying every moment your life has to offer. You should embrace everything life hands you, despite whether or not it is deemed as worthy of your appreciation. 

Don’t waste. 

Don’t take anything for granted, because one day it could very well be gone.

You were given this book of life to continue reading and writing, editing and loving. Just because a writer comes to a dead end, never does it mean that they must stop. You pave the rest of your path, and start from scratch.

Life is beautiful, if only you open your eyes to notice. 

So stay.

Finish writing the book of your life.

You are too alive to do anything different.
Until next time,

Tay❤

#stopthestigma #suicideawareness

Blogs, Not Vlogs

I royally suck, considering it has been over 2 months without me posting any of this, after I swore that I would.

After my 18th birthday, Michelle and I decided to take a short trip up to Colorado. Mainly to decorate with her parents for , but while we were there we decided to surprise people while we were there.

It didn’t really go as planned.

I explained to everyone that we were going to Colorado, and that I’m going to vlog about it. However, I am extremely camera shy and hated feeling as if I was talking to myself. I ended up being too embarrassed to “vlog.” I did, instead, take many videos that I could compile in one. 

I hope you enjoy me screwing up this “vlogging” and horrible camera angles. At least I tried, right?

Michelle picked me up early that morning, and we drove out to Little Elm, where her parents had been staying for the Thanksgiving holiday. When we got there, we moved over our things, hopped into her father’s truck and were on the road for the 12 hour trek to Woodland Park.

About 2 hours later, we stopped in Collinsville, an incredibly quaint town where some of Michelle’s family lives, to visit with them for a while.

Her family is loud and lovely, and if I could, I would sit in their kitchen drinking coffee with them every second of every day. 

As you can tell, Michelle is much more aquainted with the camera than me.

I’ve been on many a road trip with the Hilson family, and each time Michelle and I have the same assortment of road snacks and accessories. Without them, the 12 hour ride wouldn’t be as tolerable.

Checklist

  • Chex mix (cheesy flavor, or original for me.)
  • Chips, flavor depending on our moods.
  • Drinks, also depending on moods.
  • Blankets for naps.
  • Chargers
  • Books, depending on moods.
  • Dramamine, because both Michelle and I get car sick.
  • Tunes. Disney, alternative, screamo, sad music, rap, anything in between.

After waving goodbye and climbing back into the truck, we jetted off again.

Before leaving Texas, we stop at a steakhouse that was quite sketchy to say the least. But it wasn’t…all…bad!

After that, it was pretty dark, so I didn’t get many videos. We ended up arriving in Colorado super late that night. Michelle’s pets were there to greet us. Let me tell you, when you see a dog for the first time in a really long time, it is probably the best greeting in the world, no matter how tired you possibly are.

Michelle is exhausted if you can’t tell.

The next day, we were sick. Really sick. I felt so horrible, I didn’t take any videos. I barely got up, honestly. 

After a humidifier and some medicine, I woke up the day afterwards with some more pep in my step.

The Hilson family has had a tradition for Christmastime since before they moved to Colorado. They all go as a family and cut down a Christmas tree. I never had the pleasure of tagging along, but this time I did! It was freezing up on Rampart Range. I don’t know how anyone could possibly camp up there, let alone walk two steps. 

It was about 45 minutes of hiking. By hiking, I mean losing Ric and Michelle and debating on whether or not I should pee in a bush. Tresa and I eventually found Michelle, but Ric was still nowhere to be found, so we just kind of stood there and waited for him. 

I was completely turned around in this forest. For the record, I am not an outdoorsy person under any circumstances. My feet were soaked and my nose was running. How do the people of Colorado do this?! 

We found Ric, and most importantly, we found a tree. Now, this tree wasn’t the best tree on earth. It was skimpy, and sort of oddly fluffed. I’m one for taking a liking to things that don’t blend in, which is why I believe I loved this tree.

Michelle insisted that she cut it down by herself.

We traveled down the pass to the Springs, and shopped for decorations at Home Depot. Keep in mind how I said I was nothing short of a horrible cameraman, so excuse the awful movement.

(This video makes me laugh hard at Michelle’s face)

We decorated the tree when we got home, to the point that the tree looked as if it was glittering before our eyes.

At this point, I was pretty sad because our time was running short and I hadn’t seen anyone I was planning on seeing. However, after someone informed me of a choir concert happening that next evening, my hopes were once again high considering everyone participates in choir in Woodland Park. It was as if the universe was looking out for me!

These videos I actually talked to the camera, though I felt insane or something.

This video is literally 2 seconds long because my phone glitched out as I was walking over. But in case you can’t tell, that’s our friend John. It would have been a video of him saying “What are you doing here!?” He was completely thrown off.

(Excuse the shotty camera viewings. What a nice floor Woodland Park High School has.)

It was amazing. Seriously. If you ever want to meet incredible people, just go to Woodland Park.

Afterwards, we thought that people were going to change so we awkwardly stood out in the lobby. Then, we realized they were leaving so I turned into a chicken with its head cut off trying to say goodbye. 

“Hey do you know where John went?”

“Is Noelle back there?”

“If Noelle is back there, will you tell her we are leaving?”

*messages Savanna 10 times to find her.*

*calls Noelle a zillion times.*

“Did you see where Amanda went?”

It was totally a spur of the moment decision, hence why it was difficult to find anyone. In retrospect, we could have just told people we were there instead of trying to surprise them. But come on, that video is the best.

We later found Noelle in the parking lot about to leave, so we did get to say goodbye to her! 

Afterwards, our friend Olivia invited us to come stay with her that night, and she would drive us to the airport in the morning. It was bittersweet going back to Texas, as I missed my bed, but hated being away from people who meant a lot to me. Tresa and Ric are always the hardest goodbyes.

Liv most definitely cried.

We did reach a slight issue as we were getting ready to walk through airport security, though.

I once read that dermal piercing make security beepers go off, so I was definitely on edge. I also realized while waiting in line that my keys have a small thing of pepper spray on them, and wasn’t sure if it was considered a weapon. (Though it was on the list of what not to bring.)

After our flight, we went into our work and ate fried pickles.

Needless to say, we definitely enjoyed our trip.

In conclusion, however, I think I will just stick with my blog and my words, rather than my face and a camera.

Maybe I should also take a photography class?
Until next time,

Tay❤

Music; the Epitome of Being.

When someone is in trouble, I do my best to help them. Well, this is the way I know best. Considering I have readers in Australia, Pakistan, London, Russia, and even Bolimia, I figured if there is anyone out there that can help, my readers definitely can.

I attended Woodland Park High School for a short, six months. However, in that time I made more friends than I had in the 12 years I had been in Texas. These people, lemme tell you.

I was honestly astounded the minute I stepped into the school, because it was as if music just lingered in the atmosphere. Music was what played for the passing period bells. Music was what my teachers played in their classrooms. And musicals was what was stirring up in the air as auditions had begun that week for their Spring production.

Anyone who has experienced school in Texas knows that football is a way of life. No one heard of musicals, especially in my town. We did one musical my freshman year, You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown, and I thought it was great. I was baffled when no one else at my school wanted to do another one!

(Royse City High School’s Production of You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown. Pictures belong to Holly Stone.)

Music was everywhere at Woodland Park High School. Everyone, including the sports players and teachers, supported the upcoming musical, Leap of Faith. It was a completely different atmosphere for me. It seemed as if everyone there came out of the womb dancing and singing and playing an instrument. 

I decided to attend their talent show to see for myself if the talent there was really as big and bad as everyone claimed it to be. Well, I was definitely taken back.

So much talent, I could barely stomach it. I hadn’t seen so much amazement since I saw a Dallas Summer Musical. 

Vivace performed a song I had stuck in my head for about a week afterwards. You can see their cover of Brother by Needtobreathe here.

These people have their music program at stake right now. Why them? They are so lovely, and talented, and most of all beautiful. They are a small town, with huge hearts. Below I will include more videos of these talents, if you are not already convinced.

(Woodland Park High School’s 2016 Madrigal Choir singing Africa by Toto at Cabaret Night.)

(Hannah Hobson, at the time junior, and Noelle Bovee, at the time sophomore, singing NBC’s Smash rendition of Frank Sinatra’s That’s Life at Cabaret Night 2016.)

(Grant Zeller, at the time senior, and Mia Troxell, at the time sophomore, singing Let me Love You by Ne-Yo.)

These are just a handful of videos from the 6 months I was there. Need more convincing? Feel free to hit me up. 

Help these talented people by signing their petition below. They’d really appreciate it, and I know I would. Feel free to share around wherever you may be.

https://www.ipetitions.com/petition/save-our-wphs-music-programs-2

Woodland Park, I hope I could be of some assistance. I love you all with my entire heart.

Until next time,
Tay❤

#warriors

The Green Dragonfly Dress

Attachment problems, you could say I had, as a young girl, and even now. When I loved something, I gave it all I had. That included the outfit I wore for as long as I could remember.

It was white with ruffles on the shoulders, though by the time I outgrew it, I’m sure it was moreso a faded yellow. The bottom half was caressed with thin green stripes, and on the right side of the beltline, there was a dragonfly.

I loved this dress, as I recall I did everything in it. If it was intended to be a dress you wear to church or an Aunt’s wedding, those rules never entered my mind. 

The dress was a safety blanket for me. I wore it so often, and played so much, that it was ripping and shrinking off of the skin I grew. Not that it bothered me one bit, as I continued to wear it. 

I wore it outside when the smell of chalk invaded any possible room for oxygen. Pinks and reds and purples and greens all stained the white of the dress, and the late afternoon sunbeams warmed the crease in my neck.

I wore it inside when Barbie went swimming inside the hollowed bathtub of our sky-blue walled bathroom, close enough a sky for any imagination. Barbie made too much a splash and water drenched the front of my dress, but it slid past my thoughts. Later on, the drying of my dress would harden and crinkle against my skin, because now it was not as soft as it once was, and the chalk stains turned to paint.

I wore it on the trampoline with my little sister, who loved to act as if I was an egg and the goal of the force from her small, twig legs was to crack me open. I held on to my knees as a koala hangs on to his branch, bouncing like a ball, and swaying from side to side, scuffing up my dress on every inch. Black skid marks were a token from the trampoline that I never once took for granted.

I wore the dress while eating dinner, the hill of spaghetti a force to be reckoned with. Not even I could control where the slurps and slips of each bite would land. Most on my dress, some on the floor where the dog would wag and sniff and lick. 

A few years later, the dress had become a shirt and I had beyond outgrown it. My little sister was handed it down, but I never knew what happened to it afterwards. I liked to believe that it was given to another little girl to play around in, or donated to someone else. 

About a month ago, I was sitting in a restaurant when I saw a blonde headed girl wearing it. 

Maybe not the exact dress, even though I would definitely love to believe that. She sat in the booth with her family and older brother, eating spaghetti.

I like to believe she loves chalk, Barbie, and trampolines too.
Until next time,

Tay❤

We Must Raise Our Children Better

I attended my first lesson in self hatred probably way before I was 9 years old, but this time is my first recollection that comes to mind. I was at my grandmother’s house for a sleepover with my cousins, and to save time, we usually all bathed together. At 9 years old, I had already grown boobs, and was utterly terrified of my body. As my cousin and I were undressing, my grandmother sat on the side of the bathtub, waiting patiently for it to fill up. I could feel the burning of her eyes on my skin, so I folded my clothes and looked at her. Her eyes went back and forth from me to my cousin. She then laughed and said “Wow, Taylore. You’ve gotten a lot bigger than [cousin] you should probably stop eating a lot.”

That was all it took for me to start hating myself. I started looking in the mirror more. I started comparing myself to other girls, which no 9 year old girl should be doing. I started wearing tight bras, hoping they’d hide my incoming boobs. All before I even turned double digits.

Now, I’m not saying the self deprecation of my teen years was all of my grandmother’s blame. All teenage girls lack self-love and appreciation at some point. However, mine came way too soon. 9 years old is incredibly young to count calories.

My friends started getting that way too, saying that their parents had pointed out that they had gotten too chubby, or that their skin was too flaky. One of my friend’s mom had her run a mile everyday because she wasn’t skinny enough. Another friend’s parents locked up the pantry until they decided it was time for food.

Both of the before mentioned girls developed eating disorders and mental health problems in high school. One of them even went to a hospital for a long time after she stopped eating. The other attempted suicide.

At 9 years old, we weren’t supposed to be constantly checking the mirror and starving ourselves to be beautiful. At 9 years old, we were supposed to be scampering amongst the playground in a state of imagination. Fighting off armies, presiding over a royal court, swinging through vines atop the Rainforest. Instead, some of my generation skipped out on that part of their life to make sure they were losing weight. We grew up way too fast.

Because instead of teaching us to love yoga and fruit, you taught us we needed to be skinny.

Because instead of showing us that 6 meals a day, including snacks, is better for your metabolism, you taught us we needed to be skinny.

Because instead of letting us be kids and knowing we will figure it out for ourselves, you taught us we needed to be skinny.

Because instead of teaching us to be healthy about our lives, you gave us all eating disorders.

I’m not saying that our parents have everything to do with our outlook on things, but they kinda do. Who raised us? They practically put ideas into our heads since the moment we were born. Sure, as we got older, we made things for ourselves. Which is why now, I can look back and wish I had learned to be healthy rather than starving myself just to look like a size 0. I learned myself as I got older.

I lost some of my childhood trying to be skinny instead of playing pretend. I should have played pretend more.

I say all of this in hope for a better future, where our children can stay playing pretend for a few more years. I for one, want to teach my children healthy habits, such as eating a granola bar for a snack, rather than a bag of chips. The longer they can put off self-hatred the better. Who knows? Maybe with our parenting, we can help depression rates go down. I want to teach my children to love themselves for who they are, instead of hate themselves for what they’re not.

We should have been slaying the giant, not slaying ourselves.
Until next time,

Tay❤