Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Seven Fat Cows 2.0: Rick and Kate's kids

Rick and Kate had six kids. Three of them were biologically theirs and three of them were foster kids.

The girls

Gabriella was Rick and Kate’s biological daughter and their oldest child. Gabby taught high school English in a suburb of Memphis, Tennessee.

Gabby was married to Guillermo (Bill) Gonzales. Bill drove a delivery truck. Gabby and Bill were both physical fitness nuts.

Gabby was organized and could be a bit “directive”.

They had no children but they did have a Jack Russel cross (with a beagle?) named Sam.

Janelle was removed from her mother when Janelle was seven. Janelle had been in-and-out of her mother’s house several times until her mother tested HIV positive. Then the courts placed Janelle into the foster care system where she bounced around until she was ten. That is when she landed in Rick and Kate’s house.

Janelle was into body art: Piercings, tats...the works. The image she projected was completely the opposite of her personality. It was many years before Kate figured out that the body art was Janelle’s armor. She looked tough so bullies picked on other people.

Janelle spent the last year of high school taking on-line classes and then after graduation she drifted west. First to Grand Rapids, then to Chicago, then Denver, then Seattle.

Janelle kept in touch with Rick and Kate but was usually pretty thin with details about exactly what she was doing for work and housing. Kate figured that Janelle’s situation changed so fast that she didn’t know where her next dollar was coming from.

Janelle was willing to work but could be “moody” and was not trustful of others.

Nyssa entered Rick and Kate’s house as an twelve year old.

Nyssa’s mother had moved up to Michigan with her brood of feral children and promptly Over-dosed.

If anybody knew anything about Nyssa’s mother’s history they kept their mouths shut.

The brood was broken up because their poor behaviors reinforced each other.

In one of those circumstances that make predicting human behavior so aggravating,  Nyssa not only thrived with Rick and Kate, she excelled. That is not to imply that life didn’t get exciting with Nyssa around.

Nyssa was working on her Master’s in Nursing at a university affiliated with a very large, urban hospital.

The boys
Luke was born two years after Gabriella. He had gotten his growth late in life and that shaped him.

Luke had cultivated the fine art of invisibility. Luke worked third shift in a warehouse.

If Luke had a social life, he did not share it with his parents.

Mark was the middle boy and was Rick and Kate’s youngest biological children. Where Luke was quiet Mark was brash.

Everybody knew when Mark entered a room.

Mark joined the Coast Guard after high school and had been stationed in New England. He met a girl and got married. She already had a kid and together they made two more in quick succession.

Mark sold cars in New England and was financially doing quiet well.

Bro’ham entered Rick and Kate’s home as a foster kid at age 13.

Bro’ham was a big city kid with a chip on his shoulder and life had been a daily struggle with him in the house. That was part of the reason why they got out of foster care.

Bro’ham walked out of one of his high school classes at age seventeen. When Rick said that going to school was a condition for living in their house, Bro’ham walked out of the house and they had not seen him since.

The last information they had on Bro’ham was three years ago when one of the locals had seen and talked to him outside a Detroit Tigers game.

All six kids could prepare a meal all the way from digging the potatoes out of the ground and killing the chicken to setting a fancy table to torching the crème brule to washing the dishes. Shooting a scoped .22 rifle offhand they could hit a soup can at fifty yards as often as not. They knew how to pick a decent camping site and set up a tent and start a fire in the rain. They had all changed oil in an engine and changed a flat tire.

Next Installment

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