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Children and Childhood

cheesys world part 1

Cheesy’s World (Part 2)

Read part one here Weeks went by with absolutely nothing. We tried to keep in contact with the park and the police every day, but we always got the same response. They were ‘looking into it.’ From what we were being told, they were contacting people that had been at …

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forever and always

Forever and Always

Everybody loves the woods, until they follow you home. When my father came back from the military, we bought our first house—a boxy, two-story affair on the woodsy outskirts part of town. I was twelve, going on thirteen then. Our neighborhood was a little off the beaten path, nestled somewhere …

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the land where nothing grows

The Land Where Nothing Grows

I grew up on a small-town ranch in the Midwest region of the United States, on land that had been passed down in my family for several generations. It can be brutal out there, with hot dry summers that threaten to suck every last drop of moisture from you, and …

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cheesys world part 1

Cheesy’s World (Part 1)

‘Cheesy’s World, where a kid’s happiness is guaranteed!’ Well, that’s how the slogan went back when I was a teenager anyway. I know what you’re thinking. “Cheesy’s World? Isn’t that a rip off of…” And you would be right if it reminded you of several places. If you ever had …

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My Best Friend Became a Murderer

My buddy Gavin had always tried to be a superhero. Yes. You read that right. Not he always loved superheroes – not even that he always wanted to be a superhero. He made a costume and mask when we were in middle school and had been crusading around the neighborhood …

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Did you hear the Ice Cream Man last night?

I used to think of Hell as a faraway place. For those of you out there who still hold that belief, this piece of my life is for you. Don’t ask me why I’m doing this; I’m honestly not sure. My therapist says writing about our traumas can help our …

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a box of light among the stars

A Box of Light Among the Stars

It all started when I was a little girl. Christmas Eve, 2004. I was eight years old. “Santa, is that you?” Footfalls on the staircase echoed through the house as I jumped out of bed and ran past the doorframe to catch a glimpse of the man himself. CREAK CREAK …

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dna test

My DNA Genealogy Test Shattered Everything I Thought I Knew About My Life

I sat against the red and brown brick wall outside the police station, knees tucked into my chest. My heavy breaths clouded in front of me as the cold winter air bit at my skin, making my fingers numb, but I didn’t care. The cold air provided me with the …

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Those Deep, Dark Wells

The terrible thing happened at night—as most terrible things do. While I click-clicked away at my home job as a transcriptionist, I’d often watch the boys playing in the backyard. They’d be at it for hours, acting out some scene with foam swords and plastic guns, only stopping when the …

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I Investigate Disturbing Cases: Here Are My Stories – Watchers

When people think of police officers, I think there’s a disconnect between our image and the reality of who we are. A lot of people see us as the good guys. Real-life superheroes that jump in at the last moment with shining golden badges ready to stop the “bad guys” …

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I Investigate Disturbing Cases: Here Are My Stories – The Woman

They say that everyone has a case that haunts them. Personally, if it’s just one case, then clearly, whoever “they” are isn’t doing very good police work. Being a detective is gritty and bleak. You aren’t dealing with happy endings, you’re dealing with the cold hard truth. Sure, every now …

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The Farmer and the Scarecrow

I killed my best friend when I was thirteen. It wasn’t what I wanted, or what the others involved wanted, but that doesn’t matter now, he’s gone. Most people look back at their childhood and realize that there was a day they went out to play with their friends for …

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A Demon Named Frank

My son, Richie, was almost 3 years old with beautifully thick and curly brown hair that seemed to hang in place flawlessly without any serious effort. He was a growing, healthy, and happy child, with a rapidly developing vocabulary, as any parent would hope for. That, however, was before Frank …

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The Boy in the Window

She tried pulling herself back, but however hard she tried, however hard she pushed, she could not stop her feet dragging her towards the open window. She dug her heels into the wooden floor, feeling splinters coming off it as her feet dragged her onward. Her hands caught the window-sill, …

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Another Hungry Mouth

Constance would not tell anyone who the father was. Not when her mother cried nor when her father yelled. Not even when her older sister, Emily, sat on her bed and held her in her arms – rocking her gently. Constance was four-months pregnant when she told her family, and …

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A Child Like No Other

When I joined the case at 47 County Street, I didn’t know what to expect. As a social worker, I see all kinds of screwed up things from child abuse, to children abusing their parents. Yet, when I got the reports from that household, I wasn’t expecting much. The initial …

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Huggy

“Holy shit!  Is that what I think it is?”  Brandon’s eyes widened into saucers and, despite being filled with an unabated rage towards his older brother just a few hours ago, Michael couldn’t help but smile and nod at the expected reaction.  Even with everything that had happened earlier in …

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