you can go home again (pardon me while i reminisce)

this weekend i went home to austin and stayed with my folks. in case i haven’t told you, i grew up there and every time we go back, i remember why i love that city and why i eventually had to get the hell out, if only because my parent’s patience with letting me “find” myself was wearing thin.

i also remember why it took me 8 years to graduate from UT (albeit with 2 undergrad degrees and just 6 hours short of a third), but that’s a whole bunch of other stories. while i was home, my dad pulled out this picture of me and my sisters, which i hadn’t seen in years. 

it’s a wonder my parents ever slept soundly at night because the three of us used to stay out all the time carousing until dawn.


here we are getting ready for a night on the town. i distinctly remember this night because we went to a huge birthday blow-out at a friend of sessie’s whose parents were out off town. par-tay! one big mansion and a bunch of underage kids drinking beer. that’s not a recipe for disaster. surprisingly, nothing truly disastrous happened, although i do seem to remember that some people ended up skinny dipping in the pool (nope, not me).

dr. laura was the youngest and also seemed to get into the most trouble. i got busted once for sneaking out, and my parents changed my bedroom so i couldn’t crawl out the window anymore.

dr. laura, on the other hand, wrecked more cars than anyone should be allowed to drive, including a small incident that involved suspending a volkswagen rabbit (a blue wolfsburg edition) in mid-air in a grove of small oak trees. she and her boyfriend couldn’t even get the doors open and had to crawl out the hatch back to escape. luckily, no one was hurt.

the car was wedged so tightly between the trees that her boyfriend and a couple of his football player friends couldn’t budge it, so they finally called my dad to come help. after dad assessed the situation, he decided it would probably be better to wait until the next day to call a wrecker. police tend to want to become involved in matters like cars hanging out in trees.

her excuse was something along the lines of “i was futzing around with the tape deck and the next thing i know…” dad says he was never sure if alcohol was involved or not, but i’m pretty sure they way it really went down was, “i was bending down to grab a bartles and jaymes wine cooler and my crazy ass friends and i weren’t paying any attention to the road, and we drove off a freaking cliff.” 

as you can imagine, my parent’s laissez-faire attitude and the lack of any repercussios for this incident, which we were fully expecting to be forthcoming, caused quite a bit of tension between dr. laura and sessie and me, because….well, we were freaking jealous! and pissed. very pissed. sessie was exceptionally pissed, as this was her car to take to college and it was now totaled. it was just so UNFAIR. we had been getting in trouble for years and now it was dr. laura’s turn… and pfffft! nothing. that’s the curse of being the older siblings. we had done all the hard work, broken the parents in, so to speak, and now they were over it. they were just happy whenever we didn’t kill ourselves.

anyway, at some point i think dr. laura must have felt really guilty about about all the money my parents were spending to keep us in cars, or maybe she just grew up, because she got her act together, got some new friends, and went to medical school. and she’s a really good doctor. me? i’m still tryng to find myself. i’ll let you know as soon as that happens.

and the three of us have made peace. in fact we get along better now than we ever did. and that’s nice, because if a girl doesn’t have her sisters, who does she have?

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19 thoughts on “you can go home again (pardon me while i reminisce)

  1. heyjoe

    More boob photos please, and feel free to include Dr. Laura and Sessie.

    OK, great story Leigh. I’m sure you’ve got a million of them. And BTW, I thought you were still in TX. No?

  2. Chat Blanc

    you’re so right about older siblings paving the way. my older sis did that for me too! And despite the fact that we fought like cats and dogs growing up, we get along great now. amazing! glad you’re close with your sisters!

  3. leigh Post author

    joe – i’m in texas. but houston is a long way from austin, both literally and figuratively.

    chat – omg! we fought as bad as boys. i wrote something about it a while back. you can read it here.

    sully – denim and shoulder pads! we were styling!

  4. Jinksy

    Well, you may not gone to medical school, but I’m sure you wouldn’t have any problem finding men who would drop their pants for you anyways.

  5. Don

    This is my first, but not last, visit to your site. Some really good stuff here. Like the reading–duh. I can relate to the ‘big hair’ era too. Although my hair was – and still is – small…

  6. Bobman

    “…we get along better now than we ever did. and that’s nice, because if a girl doesn’t have her sisters, who does she have?”

    I hope my two daughters will think the same thing years from now.

    I think you presented a true snapshot of family – from the parent, child, and sibling perspective, having seen it and lived it from each angle, not everyone can do that.

    Great post.

  7. Sessie

    OMG! Leigh, you got mom to comment. I also feel the need to mention the following:

    i had to delete this. it would spoil the followup post.


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