From the ripe age of four years old I was enthralled with all things criminal.
The first crime story that caught my eye was the Amy Fisher case.
I would sit by the unsupervised television in my playroom and watch the news with anticipation for tid bits from the trial.
That Lifetime movie with Alyssa Melano was a life changer.
Then came Jeffery Dhamer. I was so obsessed with this story that I actually asked my mom if I could write to him in jail……
She said no.
Then stared at me for a really long time wondering if I was going to grow up to be a serial killer.
My Mom would always let me sit in Walden Books in the true crime section while she shopped the mall. This was long ago when the thought of some child predator raping your daughter in the alley ways of the mall and dumping her body in the dumpster were things that only happened in those really sick horror movies. unlike these days, when that scenario is an episode of Law and Order.
Sitting there with stacks of books like I was at the Library, I would dream of my future career in criminal psychology.
I have always been an emotional person. I can cry over pretty much anything with sentiment, however I can also think of killing idiots texting and driving in ways so brutal they put Games of Thrones to shame.
I wanted to know what was so different about these people. How was it that they could cross these brutal lines in humanity, and not think twice about how awful it was for their victims.
I would sit there and imagine all the criminals I would one day study.
Before criminal psychology their was a police officer at four years old who would arrest her Hulk Hogan Pillow Buddy and stick him in prison, which was underneath the kitchen table. Then their was Your honor Judge Janika who morphed in to a lawyer who would reform the entire prison system, and then their was a criminal psychologist.
All my mother wanted was a Doctor , and if not a Doctor, then maybe a Ballerina… but hey ,at least I stuck with one core theme here. I was going to fight the world for Justice.
The one thing there was never any time for was children. In all the Barbie games I played with my cousins as a little girl there were never any kids in my dolls life. She had no time for that, she was always some high power career woman kicking the worlds ass.
Senior year of high-school it all dissolved. I was living in the shell of the dream, knowing the entire time that it wasn’t where my heart was anymore, and if it wasn’t there what was I going to do? I had no idea, but I knew I was going to have babies.
I spent the next 5 years in college , and ended up with almost 100 credits and no degree.
Every time I would get to the end of a major program I would switch it. I started out in psychology, went to early childhood, education, back to psychology, and then finally to social work. I left general requirements waiting to give me another excuse as to why I couldn’t finish. I also took a break in between and got my nail technician license,which I still have, but do not ask me to do your nails.
Looking back now that I am back in school with four kids it makes sense to me, but it never did at the time. I was always a great student, and loved school. I would have never believed you if you told my fifteen year old self that I would be working toward a bachelors degree at thirty-three . Fifteen year old Janika was going to be a Doctor of something by thirty-three.
If I would have gotten my degree I would have never stayed home with these kids, and I am supposed to be home with these kids.
I used to feel guilty about being a stay at home Mom. I’m not bringing in any income that must make me lazy. If I would have felt that guilt in the beginning I would have gone to work, because I would have had a degree.
Of coarse, I could work now. There are many things I am qualified to do, but those jobs have convenient mothering hours that are not 9-5. I could still work at Dunkin Donuts if we needed the money every night from 7-11pm not missing my children in the process, and not making a significant amount of money. But, if I had a degree to do a job that could pay us 75,000 dollars more a year how could I not take it? I wouldn’t have been able to say no. I would have gone to work, and seventeen year old Janika knew that’s not what we wanted to do.
She saved us with all that college sabotage.
I have been a Mom for seven years, now with 4 kids, and I can tell you it is exactly what I want to do when I grow up. I am back in school for myself, because fifteen year old Janika was right about us being a doctor of something. What that something is I couldn’t tell you. I am still me, so it could be anything, but I do know it has to be something, because one day these kids will venture off into their own worlds, and I will need something else to do. I have no regrets that they came first. They had to come first. They are what I was sent here to do.
I am still kicking the worlds ass, and fighting for justice, it’s just in a platform I didn’t expect.