Life In Review
Back in January 1969, Johnny and Millie Cruz were given the news that Millie’s Christmastime partying had paid off and that she was expecting her second child. Nine months later, on August 5, Millie was rushed to Polyclinic Hospital in Manhattan where she would spend over 13 hours in labor. When they brought the little cocoa-skinned tyke to her bedside, Millie looked up from her drug induced exhaustion to say the child would be named Hector – a name she had long dreamed of since her childhood; well, that and Nestor, so I guess the Lord prevented a future suicide or name change. Johnny, feeling slightly left out that his first male child would not be named after him insisted little Hector would need to carry some part of his name. Millie gave it a quick thought and reasoned they would use Manuel, since Johnny’s first name is actually Juan and it would be at war with the chosen first name. …and so it went that Hector Manuel was more than a handful for the Cruz family. Unlike his sweet and beautiful older sister, Hector was colic, hyperactive and unusually destructive at a young age. By nine months, Hector could recite the alphabet, sing and make wonderful artwork with the contents of his diapers. Several of Millie’s 15 sisters rushed to NYC to help Millie care for Hector and prevent her from committing one of those God-forsaken tragedies that young mothers who are beyond frustration can pull-off. By age 3, Hector was getting drunk at family gatherings. He would wait for the remaining few ounces of a drink to be left behind and he would immediately swallow them down. At the tender age of 5, Hector was shipped off to live with his grandparents. A year or so later, Millie decided that it was too dangerous for Hector to live with his grandparents. He had a knack for torturing them – once even tying his grandmother to a chair for over 3 hours until his grandfather returned to find the flustered nana struggling under the tight phone cords. The years passed quickly and by age 15 Hector left home to conquer the world – or he was put out for admitting to being gay…. Hmmm, the story sounds much more positive if we say he willfully left to experience life. At any rate, Hector worked to get through high school and was blessed to come across many friends – some who he still calls his family today. With incredible obstacles to overcome, Hector survived to celebrate his 36th birthday today. His personality is a product of the many loving and caring people who bless his life daily. He is a reflection of all that is his life and a creation of everything that has touched him. Hector remains a study in contrasts. Assertive, creative, loving, supportive, selfish, boisterous and yes, even brash. He is proof that time marches on and sometimes it even marches right across your face.
Long Story Short
Libby J. is recovering from surgery at her home in Harlem. Please continue your prayers as she returns to her feet. Philippe prepares to make his Chi-town debut. The artist plans to have an exhibit in the windy city next Thursday. Carlos C. to receive disability and permanent SSI? Stay tuned. Marcia R. to rendezvous with the love of her life tonight? We want details. No Morning Edition on Monday – the editor is going to still be celebrating.
Fingers Crossed; Bags Packed
The space shuttle Discovery, the first shuttle to go back to space after the Columbia disaster two years ago, is preparing to return home before dawn on Monday. Today, astronauts began placing a large disposal container from the International Space Station into the payload bay of the shuttle – the equivalent of the shuttle’s trunk. NASA says that although several thermal tiles have come off Discovery, no repairs were necessary before their reentry to Earth. Some fear the same fatal issues that befell Columbia could affect Discovery.
Brandy once sang Have You Ever… the song relays the story of an unrequited love. You know, someone you really are head-over-heels about, but don’t feel the same for you. If applicable, please share one experience of this and whether you would have that person today if given the opportunity.
Keep passin’ the open windows…