In 1992 when I graduated from high school I couldn't wait to get out of my parent's house. My mom had just gotten married and I wanted to taste the freedom of adulthood.
We had moved between my junior and senior years in high school so I didn't really know any of my classmates very well. To make it even better, some of the required courses that were senior classes at my old school were freshmen classes in my new school. Half of my day was spent with people 4 years younger than I was.
I had kept in touch with some friends at my old school and attended the commencement ceremony. Heather had invited me and I was excited to see her graduate.
Heather was a friend that I had for about 2 years before I moved. She had gorgeous red hair and Angelina Jolie-esque lips and was blessed with peaches and cream skin. She was also a very sweet person. Unfortunately she didn't have much common sense and had ended up getting pregnant during her senior year of school. She had her son a couple of months before graduation but continued to attend regular classes rather than allowing herself to be relegated to the alternative high school.
In the summer of 1992 Heather and I moved into a one bedroom apartment in Tacoma, WA. She had the bedroom and shared it with her son and I slept on the pull out couch. It wasn't the best accomodations but it was what we could afford so we made due.
She was living on public assistance and I worked at Dairy Queen making $4.25 per hour. I had a car so I had the freedom to disappear when I needed to. I spent a lot of time with my best friend Jade. Heather had a big old boat of a car and couldn't afford a lot of gas so she was home a lot.
After about 6 months Heather and I were getting on each others nerves. We were both young but in totally different places in our lives. She was a mother and I was young, unecumbered and free to do what I wanted. I respected her and never had parties at the apartment and tried to be respectful. She had started attending a "holy roller" church and had gotten really into attending church about 3-5 days per week. She gave up make-up, cutting her hair and started wearing only skirts and dresses. I went with her a couple of times but it definitely wasn't for me. Any time a church has people come to the front of the church and start yelling in tongues it just is too strange for me. Heck, I grew up Mormon. You can't get much more subdued than that.
To go along with the red hair, Heather had a bit of a temper. I am a very non-confrontational person so if something bothered me I wouldn't really say anything. I just tried to let it go and put it behind me. Heather would get in my face and let me know exactly what she was pissed off about and it was very hard for me to deal with that type of communication.
I don't remember what really set off the argument. It might have had something to do with her turning all holy roller or it might have been about money or the fact that when her son would cry she would bring him into the living room (my bedroom) and put him in his swing with a bottle and leave him here. I honestly don't remember. What I do remember is finally overcoming my non-confrontational communication style and going off on Heather. I finally let her know what I thought about everything and somehow we started swinging at each other.
I can still see the entire fight in slow motion. I still remember Heather's fist swinging towards the side of my head and the stars that danced before my eyes when she made contact. I was more of a slapper. She was a puncher. I got a few good hits in and she got a few hits on me. We never hit each others faces but hit the side of the head, arms and such.
The fight ended when we had our hands so twisted in each others hair that we couldn't move. Both bent over pulling as hard as we could. After a short argument we both let go of each other at the same time.
As soon as the fight was over I walked out the door. I didn't want her to see my cry. I was so angry and so hurt and disappointed in myself. Here I am, an adult, and I can't control my temper.
I finally went back into the apartment and heard Heather on the phone crying to her Pastor about what had happened. I went into the kitchen and started sweeping a flashlight on the linoleum. Heather said something about that I wouldn't be able to find any blood. I wasn't looking for blood. She had hit me so hard she knocked the contact out of my eye.
Within a month Heather had moved out and I had the apartment to myself. I moved back home a few months later.
I never did find my contact.