Prosperity by Sharon Mendenhall
rosperity is an interesting person, to say the least. She isn’t very attractive. Her hair is thinning on top because when she was small she used to pull it out. But Prosperity cured that, and she doesn’t seem to be all that self conscious about her hair anymore. Prosperity is also a lot fatter than she should be for her age. But I’m not sure about her age. I mean, she’s a teenager, but she talks like she’s my grandmother sometimes. I don’t understand Prosperity, not at all. But I’ve come to love her anyway. I mean really love her, like I wish that sometimes she were mine. All mine. And every time I call 1-SLF-AWRENES and make it all the way through Faith, Trust, and Acceptance to a few moments of speaking to Prosperity, I realize that as soon as I love Prosperity to the point that I would like her to be on my doorstep everyday, she will be mine. All mine. You see, I’ve know Prosperity all her life, I just didn’t really like her until recently. When she was a baby, she was the ugliest thing that crawled on all fours. And the automatic judgement is that I believed that it was wrong to hate a baby. But this baby would have given Jumbo, Dumbo’s mom the heebie jeebies. Besides looking quite like a little toad with a thumb in her mouth, and a finger up her nose, portions of her hair was missing in clumps, like she had just been through some serious chemo. She had whining down to an art form, and couldn’t drink a thing without drooling. And it was very hard having
a conversation with Prosperity’s mom, while Prosperity was on her lap, without thinking, “I wonder what this tub of lard is going to look like in another few years.” Well, the tub of lard grew up, and she looks like a much, much, bigger tub of lard. It sort of takes your breath away. I mean, this child is taller than most men are, and rounder than my house. She ain’t never goin’ to the prom. I mean, a prom dress that big doesn’t exist. And as I look at her now, I suppose she is of that type orientation where one chooses to never get married. But I always believed, that if you choose not to get married, that meant that you was still lookin’ a lot like Cindy Crawford, but just making some bad relationship decisions. It didn’t mean that one would choose to look like Dumbo, with very slim odds for a meaningful relationship. But I’ve begun to reconsider that belief. And I reconsider it every time I talk to Prosperity. She has a sweet voice, you know. And a shy demeanor. And of course, I’ve just had that long conversation with Acceptance, and I’m starting to understand her too. I mean at first, all Acceptance would say was, “Look at yourself! Look at yourself!” I wanted to march right down there and punch her in the face on the side where her mouth didn’t crook, and maybe that would straighten both her and her mouth out. But the more I talk to Acceptance, the more I understand her. She’s telling the truth, and her attitude is a reﬂection of my attitude. Attitude reﬂects back a lot more than anything else. Attitude is a belief,
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