Pigtails. That's what they call me. That and many other things, including "Farm Girl", "Mary Anne" - as in Gilligan's Island - and "Hand-me-down".
My real name is Lilia Katherine Jacobs. I was named after my great-grandmother who came over from Scotland as a young child. She was the eldest of five kids in a farm family. Her life was almost exactly like mine. She grew up on this farm; her father a farmer, her mother doing all- and more- than her time would allow. I'm positive she went through what I'm going through now.
I once read a quote in her diary- "The eyes are the window into the soul." It didn't say who told her this, but Mama told me that once. I guess she read great-grandma Lilia's diary, too. Well, the quote is true in my classroom. The other kids, city kids (as I call them) are peppy, lively, and energetic. Their eyes show their souls are, too. I try to be happy, but looking into my eyes, you see the truth. You see the eyes of a chained wild horse- sorrowful and upset. Or the eyes of a puppy beaten one to many times- scared and defeated. Or those of a longing soul, a broken soul, longing for love, affection, and acceptance of any kind from kids her age.
All the other kids my age are city kids. That's what I call them. Mean, rotten, snobby, bratty, spoiled, rich. That's what most city kids are.
Don't get me wrong. Mama and Daddy try hard to make me like them. They give ,or make me nice clothes, a wonderful home, plenty to eat, and more love than Romeo gave Juliet. They try to make me like city kids; they think that's what I want, but they can't. I don't live in a fancy mansion, or have tons of money, or the latest toys- but to tell the truth, I don't care. It's actually better this way. I couldn't be a city kid- no matter what. I'm like a wild horse as Mama likes to say. I have to have space and air. Freedom. There's no way to tame me or keep me locked up. I need to breathe the fresh air, the honeysuckle, the roses. I need our farm.
Lilia Katherine Jacobs- that's what the city kids SHOULD call me. But I guess for now I'm just plain Pigtails, and I have to live with it. I try to look past the fact that they're city kids and treat them for what's in their souls. Why can't someone see past my country background and see me for what I am - Lilia Katherine Jacobs, a 15 year old girl, who happens to live on a farm?
Originally published Scenes for High School Drama Students