"Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all." -Dale Carnegie
I hated that quote with every cell in my body. It was put up outside my bedroom after my sophomore year. The 'great depression' as Dad joked, the year I met Jen and decided there wasn't much of a point going to high school if I was just going to end up like her anyway.
I retreated to the bathroom and dressed in yesterday's clothes. I stared at myself in the mirror. I had Chloe dye the ends of my hair over the weekend. I wanted to look more like Jen and less like my Mom, but I ended up with a choppy black and purple dye job that left two inches of blonde on top. It didn't look to bad in a ponytail though.
After applying my usual amount of black eye liner I dragged myself to kitchen and grabbed a granola bar for breakfast.
"You're going to have to take Cindy to school today," Mom announced from the living room.
"Why?" I asked sarcastically.
She folded the morning newspaper down so she could stare daggers at me through her moon shaped glasses, at least that's what I liked to think she did. Instead she smiled softly and slowly counted to ten.
"We talked about this yesterday," she said. "You're father and I are helping the Johnson's move up to South Worth, you have to watch Cindy."
I sat down and began lacing up my boots. "I know," I said.
"If you know than why did you ask?" Dad's voice came from the other side of the living room.
I ignored him as a hurricane of pink fabric filled the kitchen.
"You can't wear that to school." I told her.
She twirled around in the large tutu she got for her birthday and shouted, "Yes I can!"
"We don't tell you what you can't wear," came Dad's voice.
I walked to the mud room and pulled the spare key from it's hook. "Hurry up Cindy."
The bouncing ball of glittered tumbled in next to me and stepped into her my little pony rain boots. I sighed and told myself to let it go.
Humming the theme of Glitter Power, Cindy clambered into the backseat of dad's truck, her tutu covering both her face and Polly Pocket backpack.
I started the engine and adjusted the seat.
"Get your buckle on." I ordered.
I listened as she struggled to get the belt over her skirt.
"I can't!" she whined. "Help!"
I groaned loudly and quickly buckled her in. "Are you ready?" I asked.
She gave a tight smile and nodded her head.
I turned back to the wheel and backed out. Our neighborhood was small, still in the process of building, which meant we had more brown waste land to look at than the dull blanket of conformity. But still, it was easy to get through the tight corners up to the main road.
"Check both ways before crossing the street," Cindy sang to herself.
I rolled my eyes and pulled forward.
"Stop!" Cindy yelled suddenly.
I slammed on the breaks and looked frantically for the small dog I ran over.
"What?" I yelled.
"You almost ran over Thisbe!"
I quickly calmed myself down. "Thisbe isn't real," I said angrily and stepped on the gas.
"Yes she is!" Cindy retorted. "and you almost hit her!"
I clenched my teeth. Our parents thought it was cute that Cindy had imaginary friends, but I thought these friends were a little too real to her. I clicked my turn signal and waited for the car in front to move. I followed the long line of drop off cars to the main doors. I stopped and watched through the mirror as she unbuckled herself and opened the door.
"You're supposed to say, have a good day!" she yelled.
"Have a wonderful joyous day!" I said, rolling my eyes.
"You too!" she called back and slammed the door.