JUST JUNIORS JOURNAL
Courage. Honor. Nobility.
"I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.
I feel my fate in what I cannot fear.
I learn by going where I have to go."
I went to court on February 19, 2002. I was testifying against the man who molested me last summer.
In July, Lou came and helped me. He brought Rudy, and we both talked together. The man was arrested, and the court was scheduled for February. I was very nervous, but I testified against him. He was sentenced to fourteen years in jail.
The other LS Kids were very helpful, especially Vesta Jones and Meghan Wilson. They e-mailed me and encouraged me, and helped me to stand up and convict my abuser.
Everybody says I was very brave. I don't feel really brave. I just wanted to make sure he never can hurt anybody again.
When I grow up, I want to be in Lost Solace, and help other people.
After the trial, I came home. I called Lou, and then I sent an e-mail to the other kids. "I won, guys! I won!"
THE BIG MOVE
The Lost Solace Kid Headquarters is moving, from Lou's old home on Bald Eagle Street, to a new apartment on Corning Street. The last week in February, Lou and Michelle moved to a new apartment.
In a two-day project, Lou and Michelle moved into the new apartment, with a view high above the city of Lock Haven. Joined later by Michelle's Schnauzer, Sam, they are currently unpacking and settling in.
The first meeting for the LS Kids in the new place is scheduled for early March.
MEGHAN IN CONCERT
Meghan Wilson performed in a recital on February 24, 2002. It was held at three PM in the First United Methodist Church in Renovo, PA.
Meghan, of the LS Kids Renovo Bureau, sang "I Loved" in a solo. Meghan is a soprano. The concert took forty minutes, also including other solos and piano players.
Attending the recital were Lou, Michelle, and Sarah Wilson, with her baby daughter, Neveah.
LICENSE TO FLY
Stay off the sidewalks.....Vesta has a license to fly.... Oh, don't I wish.
I finally got my license. After six months of practice, on February 7, 2002 AD, I went to the Mill Hall DMV and took the nerve-racking test. Okay, so here I am in a car I've only driven twice...I need to practice parallel parking in
this boat. Dodge Avengers are big cars!
"Drive up Main Street," Mom says. "Okay, look, there's a place to parallel park....pull up, back in, cut the
wheel....NO!!! The other way!!!!...Okay, start over...."
The next time I did it perfect....Pull out, fifty feet away, do it again and so on for like a hundred yards. I
parallel parked six times, but I was a pro by then.
Okay, head up by the DMV, maybe we can catch someone taking the test, we can follow them....Perfect timing. I caught my friend Bridget parallel parking. It was bad! I'm
"Okay, drive," said Mom. So I did, right behind them the whole way! I knew the way.
I went into the DMV around two. My appointment was for three-thirty, but I wanted to get it done. I was licensed by two thirty-five, and my picture isn't that bad either.
-DCS Bureau Head, Ickesburg
Brenda Geyer, President, came to visit Vesta Jones, former President and DCS Bureau Head, in Ickesburg over a weekend in February. On Saturday, February 16, Vesta and Brenda went to Motorama in Harrisburg, PA.
We got up and left at 9:30, packed up the family in the van and off we were....About thirty minutes and we were there. The place smelled of exhaust, so we knew we were in for a good show. You could hear the cycles revving their engines.
Go in, pay the cash, and find a seat before they are all gone. Okay, we are good!! We got front seats!!
Motorcycles are going....Mad air!! Get some four-wheelers out there, really dirty, and now so are we. We all looked like we were miners when we got home that night, which was around 11:30, and we even left early. Get a shower and sleep till noon.
-DCS Bureau Head, Ickesburg
BLONDE AT HEART
On Wednesday, January 30th, I, Sarah Wilson, got my permit.
And after trying only six times.
Now, for those of you who know me, you are probably afraid
to read on, but for those of you who don't, let me enlighten you. I am the most brain-dead person you will ever meet. I have negative common sense.
Anyway, so I went home and told my boyfriend Scott to take me driving. He was a little resistant, but I turned
on the charm, and a minute later we were in the car, ready to go.
So there we were in the car. I turned the key (after I figured how to get it in the hole) and, vroom vroom,
went the car.
Little did I know that there was so much more to do than just go. You have to push in the brake and put it in "D" and everything. So after I finished all that work, I started to drive. Luckily it was about ten at night and
there weren't that many people out.
Now we got to the end of my steet and I had to go out into the MAIN ROAD!!! I stopped at the stop sign. (I even knew how to do that by myself.) My braking technique is a whole other story, though.
I looked both ways to see if something was coming, but I couldn't see so Scott told me to pull up a little bit. I pulled the front of my car onto the yellow line and continued to look both ways. Nothing was coming,
so I pushed the gas the whole way to the floor, and turned the wheel.
Scott told me to slow down, so I slammed on the breaks. Scott told me to get out and let him drive. So, I did. And thus ended my first driving experience.
ADORE IT/DEPLORE IT
Adore It: Texas District Judge J. Manuel Banales ordered a twenty-year-old man not to have sex until he was married, and could support the nine children he already had. Banales has taken some heat for this order, but it sounds reasonable to me. If this man can't learn to be responsible, he doesn't need to bring more neglected children into the world.
Deplore It: Attorney General John Ashcroft's decorators. To block nude statues outside the office window, the staff put up curtains. The price tag: Eight thousand dollars. Our tax dollars at work. The government never heard of Wal-Mart?
The Just Juniors Journal Is:
President: Brenda Geyer
IVP: Staci Wyland
Secretary: Debbie Benfield
Quartermaster: Maria Shelley
Staff: Ginger White, Kendra Koch
Renovo Bureau: Sarah Wilson, Meghan Wilson
Distant Correspondents: Vesta Jones, Amber Fleming, Kazlynn Otto
I'm proud of Amber. And grateful to her.
When I first met Amber, it was last summer. I found her in the neighborhood I grew up in, just as she was going through a period of abuse. And I understood her, probably better than anyone else could ever hope to. She and I are connected in a way that very few other people can really understand.
When Amber went to court this month, she didn't just convict her abuser. She convicted my abuser. Twenty years after it happened to me, the same guy returned to hurt Amber. But this time, I found her. And together, we made the charges stick. I didn't say anything back then. But Amber did, now, and he's in jail because of it.
Because of one brave, frightened little girl, my abuser is finally being punished. After twenty years, I finally get to see it happen. Almost as if it was meant to be this way, all along.
Amber is a member of the LS Kids now. When she's older, she plans to join Lost Solace and help other people. I'll recommend her. She'll be good at it---I know. Better than anyone else, I understand exactly what she's been through.
This month, I packed everything I own into boxes, and moved it to a new home. I'm beginning a new life here. And, largely because of Amber, I can begin it without nightmares.
Michelle and I took a break during the moving to go and see Meghan Wilson in her recital. I sat with Sarah, who is one of the kids who's been with me the longest. And I held her baby, the baby I had seen at one day old.
"Did I tell you?" I whispered to Sarah during the recital. "Amber won."
Sarah lit up, and smiled at me. And she asked me the question the nobody else had, that nobody thought of or wanted to know.
"How's it feel?" she asked.
I smiled at her.
"It feels free."
-Today is the first day of the rest of my life