My dad, Simon Klein, grew up in a place called Willow Creek. It is a small town separated by little streams of water, and forests tracing the perimeter for miles. He lived in a decent neighborhood; nice people, “cheap” area. The one thing he had to put up with was the active railroad behind his house that often passed trains through in the early morning. The house was small but managed to fit two rooms, and he lived with his mother, father, and little sister — my Aunt Mimi.
He had to share his room with Aunt Mimi but they generally got along. Dad was always a decent and cooperative being. He’s great with people, to begin with — always very outgoing, which he took after his father (do you see he’s the spitting image of him too??) But he’s really got his act together. He’s neat, tidy, clean, and takes good care of his body. His health is important to him and he often spent time jogging around the block to relieve any tension he picked up in the waves of daily life.
He met Briella Brumfield when she moved into the house next to his. That’s my mom. As soon as Dad found out it was a young girl living in the tiny house, he was right on it. He knocked on her door welcoming her to the neighborhood, and things took off from there.
Dad didn’t change much other than he grew a little facial hair. My mom, like Dad, was very much into family and wanted to start a family with him right after marriage. The one thing she struggled with was obsessive compulsive disorder, otherwise everything was completely normal. I remember my house being spotless, not a single thing was allowed to be out of place, and we weren’t allowed to change the way Mom arranged things.
Anyway, they got married in the park. It was really nice, I saw lots of pictures of it. Here’s one of Mom and Aunt Mimi when she was in high school looking at the camera — Mom looks normal, smiling and everything, and Aunt Mimi was making a funny face at the cameraman:
She was always joking like that. The family and all the in-laws got along pretty well. Aunt Mimi was really interested in interior design. She read through a bunch of magazines in her youth and was hooked ever since then on the idea of having a big, beautiful home.
Dad simply wanted to raise a successful family, that was all he asked. He worked as a personal trainer. Mom was a stay-at-home-mom, but was also an adventurer and collector, very much interested in archaeology as a child. So, she ended up doing a lot of “artifact hunting” which meant searching the local wildlife for frogs, gems, and the like.
Then, I was born.
This is me. I know, I know, I look like a boy. I am in fact, however, a girl.
I have red hair and green eyes like my mom. Well, both of my parents have green eyes, but that’s not important. I dressed pretty tomboy-ish and always had my hair pulled back.
When I was old enough to have my own bed, my family moved. They wanted a bigger house, but couldn’t afford one — so the whole family, which included us plus my grandparents and Aunt Mimi, pooled their resources together to get a nicer place.
This is the house we moved into. It was the “least attractive” looking house on the whole block, full of grand family homes (just to give you an idea of how freakin’ beautiful the street looked), but it was still a beautiful house. It has three bedrooms, enough for Mom and Dad, Grandma and Grandpa, and me and Aunt Mimi.
It was a full house. My mother was also pregnant with my sister at the time. Aunt Mimi eventually moved in with her fiance, which relieved a lot of the “busy house” stress. Grandma and Grandpa really wanted to move too, but they had no choice to stay. With what money would they go elsewhere?
Shortly after my sister was born, though, Grandpa Klein died. It was a really tragic time in our family. Especially for Dad. His father was the role model who shaped him into who he is. They’re exactly alike in so many ways!
When you really think about it, his legacy is truly functioning. His values were practically copied and pasted onto his son, who then influenced his generation of me and my sister. It takes a strong person to have such a great impact on our behavior and our way of life until now.
I want to continue this one day, with a new name and a new story. I don’t know how my future will turn out, or even where I’m going. But, as another hardworking member of my family, all I can believe in is that life will take me down the right path.
And so begins my story – the life of Alisha Klein!!