Saturday, December 18, 2010

“Another Snippet from Secondhand Shoes”


Hopefully, you read the first snippet. If not, go back back and read it. Enjoy!

Daddy stepped away from me and raised his hand in a calming gesture, something he did when he tried to take a stand against Mom. In the fourteen years they’d been married, Mom won the battles. All of them. The land mines that she planted in our home were too much for him to contend with, and he’d backed down.

Daddy looked at her. “Lila has something to tell you.”

Mom jammed her fists on her hips. “What is it?”

“I don’t want to marry Max.”Where the words came from, I didn’t know. I certainly hadn’t taken bravery pills.

Mom’s gray eyes narrowed.

If she goes to slap me, I’ll grab her wrist mid-go. Maybe. If I’m fast enough. Speed is the key here.

“What do you mean you don’t want to marry Max? There are two hundred and fifty people waiting out there. I spent twenty-five hundred dollars on the caterers, which, if you’ll recall, can’t be refunded. I put a lot of time into looking for your dress and shoes. You have bridal nerves, that’s all.”

I hiccupped and shifted my feet.

“It’s not bridal nerves, Mom. Don’t you remember the dream that I had?”

Tears welled up in my eyes again, and my throat went dry.

“Don’t start with that dream nonsense.” She threw her hands up in the air.

This time I flinched. I thought for sure she’d hit me, but she didn’t. Unusual.

“No, you have bridal nerves, and you’re getting married. So don’t start your nonsense and ruin your chance at having a husband.”


Mom stepped closer to me and put her finger in my face.

I lowered my head. She’d never fought with just words.

“Do you want your future husband to find out that you’re certifiably nuts before the ink is dry?”

“But my dream was trying to warn me.”

“Lila, your dream is proof that you’re nuts. Not to mention, you see people that no one else does.” She chuckled. “It’s as if you think you’re a psychic or something. Your Gram filled your head with this foolishness. I guess she wanted you to be a fool like your father.” She annunciated it with anger, spewing spit out of her mouth.

Daddy put his hand on Mom’s shoulder. “Dear, she shouldn’t go through---.”

“You stay out of this. She’s not your daughter.”

Daddy slouched. Defeat stretched across his face and seeped through his eyes. That’s all she had to say. Remind him that I’m not his biological daughter. I know it pained him.

Verging on hysteria, I fell into my Mom. “But, I can’t, Mom, please. This should’ve been me and Julio’s day.” Immediately I pressed my lips together. This comment earned me a good whack.

She grabbed my arms hard and pushed me back instead. “Now stop this Julio and dream nonsense. Do you think you’re the only bride who panics at the altar? You’re not. Pull yourself together and act like the lady I raised you to be. This is your wedding day.”

I twisted free from Mom’s grip. What could I say at this point? My mouth opened to speak, but nothing came out. I thought twice about it. People were here, and I didn’t want to embarrass myself. They’d take her side anyway. I’m sure she’s told all of them how crazy I am. She would do that.


  1. Wow, brought back some memories. I wasn't sure if I should laugh or cry.

  2. Eve:

    I purposely wrote this sensitive situation with some humor. My first and second draft of this was too heavy.

  3. I usually make a smarmy little comment.

    They fail me.

    You touched my cold black heart.

    Thank you for this you are an incredible writer

    Thank you, just thank you

  4. Thank you, Rob. I enjoy touching hearts, either black or white.

  5. William:

    Lila is horrified of her mother. Poor girl.

  6. I had to go back and read the first you are extremely talented Shelly, hope you'll share more, I want to see what happens.

  7. I feel for this poor girl. Wish her Daddy could help her. Slap mommy around or something. Can't wait until she runs off with Gram. Love it. Keep up the great work and again. Thanks for sharing!

  8. Cat:

    Thank you. :) I enjoyed writing it. I cried and laughed all the way through the whole manuscript.

  9. Regina:

    About 10 chapters in she runs. The prior chapters lay the groundwork about what she's running from.


Let me know what you think.