There was always at least one or two square-shaped aroma wafers situated atop the inside of our front door, and they were there, I felt, to bid me farewell whenever I left home. They sat atop the head of most of the door frames in our home to rid of the sour smell that mice brought during winter season. Some were red and fairly new, and some were dusky brown with a coat of cobwebs over them.
Only I notice such details because I’m tall, quite literally in fact. Being the only six-feet-seven girl in Madison County, I have adopted the names, “you’re tall,” or “jeeze,” or “holy shit,” since it’s the only way people seem to get my attention. I was diagnosed with gigantism the day I couldn’t fit inside my mom’s Chevy Impala to attend a 6th grade class. That same day marked the commencement of homeschool for me, or perhaps the end to my social life. I was a tree-sized girl, crushing over the same five-feet-four pop singers. I was so basic mentally that I considered myself a living contradiction; a paradox. I did everything like every other girl my age, I just did it while being six-feet-seven, then six-feet-nine, and finally seven-feet-one. At seven-feet-one, my height had yet to overcome my desire to be wanted by a boy, not for a picture or friendship, but for that tight, thoughtless embracement of fear, or perhaps hidden affection, that happens at the peak-moment of a thriller. It was that desire that led to the worst act I have ever committed in life.
I was heading outside to collect mail when I noticed there were no aroma wafers atop the frame of the front door. My mother had put me in charge of dealing with the aroma wafers because it was much easier for me to deal with anything above five-feet-five; my mother’s height, so therefore it was a mystery as to who took them down. I asked my mother about the disappearance of the wafers, and apparently it was a pest-control worker, who happened to be roughly six-feet-seven, merely reacting to a remark my mother made about the old cobweb-covered, dusky-brown aroma wafers. A “six-feet-seven gentlemen” — — - how my mom described him verbatim. I was emotionally excited to hear about any man who could grasp something other than my waists, and so I hurriedly asked my mother for the pest control company’s contact information to see if I could apply for a job. She responded with forced laughter, and advised me not to pursue a career that would only lead to more back spasms and muscle tension, and that “it would be best to stay home and focus on realistic tasks that wouldn’t affect my immune system.” All that my head encompassed at that point was rage and rejection, enough rage and rejection for me to unplug a scented-oil glade plug-in and strike my mother’s face with full, seven-feet-one force.
I left the scene immediately to escape the horrid image of my mother losing blood and speech simultaneously, but the scent of the exposed oil stayed with me. It stays with me to this day. That’s what I went through to get to you, my love.