A New Definition to Saturday Morning Cartoons

December 12, 2007
I was six-years-old at the time; Santa Claus and the Tooth Fairy still existed, the Boogeyman lived in my closet, Barney was the bomb, and Barbie dolls were my favorite form of entertainment. Back then I still believed that a family stayed together forever.

Buried beneath the multicolored elephant prints on my bed, I opened my eyes, my face glowing upon waking from a peaceful slumber. Eager to catch the final minutes of Bugs and Daffy, my favorite Saturday morning cartoon, I shot out of bed and dashed across the house, beginning the trek to my parent’s bedroom. As I passed by the large bay window opposite the kitchen, the blue sky and temperate weather drew me closer to the glass, revealing the whirling butterflies and chirping blue jays just outside. Another warm, sunny Saturday morning in Dallas brings prospects of an exciting day I thought. I pictured myself at the playground and the way my knuckles turned white in hopes of holding on just a second longer as I gripped the monkey bars, and the whir the wind made as it whipped my hair with the revolutions of the merry-go-round. Bugs and Daffy would just have to wait until next Saturday because I was going to the park.

“Daddy,” I called throughout the house, anxious to be reunited with the grainy textures of the sandbox, but I received no answer. “Daddy,” I called out again, and for the second time I was met with silence. Disappointed, I retired back to my bedroom in hopes of salvaging my mood by seeking refuge in the simplistic perfection of my Barbie dolls.

After the usual 2 o’clock nap, I heard Mom calling my brother and me into the living room. As I plopped down on my squishy blue bean bag chair near the coffee table, I saw Mom and Dad and my stomach began to swell as I imagined them telling us we were going on a surprise vacation to Disney World. Yet, a deafening silence lingered about the atmosphere while my parents sat stiffened beyond my comprehension.

The words didn’t quite sink in at first; I thought it was just some practical joke because, after all, these things didn’t happen to families like ours. I had never seen my parents fight. The world began to spin. The colors of Dad’s favorite painting began to bleed off of its canvas and the faces in our family portrait became distorted until the picture just looked like a cloudy haze. I tried to stand, but it was a futile attempt. Nonetheless, even in the disorder, I could still make out the champagne colored car leaving its place in the front driveway.

I ran away to my bedroom, ignoring the blurred atmosphere around me. I yanked my dollhouse from its spot in the corner, envious of the perfection inside. My dolls were perfect, and I made them that way. Amidst an animated conversation between Barbie and Ken, rain began to coat the plastic house in buckets. It wasn’t until I wiped my eyes that I knew I was crying.

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