When I was sixteen I snuck out of the house. It was probably around midnight or one in the morning on a school night. It’s really not a big deal. What the biggest deal of it is I think, is how I didn’t get caught. My bedroom was on the third flood of my mother’s house. Not a big deal. The big deal is how I got down two flights of annoyingly squeaky stairs. Even now when I go home to visit, I can’t go up and down the stairs at night because the stairs are too loud. Every step you make on the wooden steps squeaks.
I remember when I snuck out. It was to see a boy. He had convinced me to come out and see him. I had told him to meet me at the bottom of my long drive way. We live on top of a hill, so I knew he wouldn’t be seen. But just the same I told him to turn off his head lights when he got close to my house. I carried my shoes in my hand stepping on the balls of my feeting, making sure not to put all of my pressure on any step in fear that the stairs would rat me out with a loud squeak. When I finally made it to the bottom, I let out a large sigh of relief and then made my way to the backdoor, because like the stairs, the front door was really loud. Sneaking out the backdoor and down the drive way, I climbed into the car that was waiting for me. I couldn’t believe it, I’d made it out. And it was some time later that I returned home and creeped back up the stairs and into the comfort of my bed. I felt so alive. I’d snuck out. Mom didn’t know.
I think there’s something to be said in the fear of knowing that what we’re doing is wrong, and even more for not getting caught. Living on my own I realize how much I love making my own rules, going home or to bed whenever I want. Just the same I miss the deviant feeling of knowing that I’m breaking the rules. Sometimes even after we break the rules we wait around just waiting to get caught.
It’s the feeling of deviance, or even awkward tension that makes me feel alive inside. It’s like when all hell is breaking loose and there’s shots going off, fists being thrown that I best learn to duck out of the way of the jabs. Instead I just watch, always on my toes, in case I too have to throw a punch. I can feel my heart beating faster in my chest waiting to see what happens next in the moment of insanity happening around me.
I remember one Christmas. My cousin had given something to my grandpa that he didn’t agree with, and he voiced his opinion as such. I remember watching this happening, and understanding it. And then five minutes later, one aunt was crying, one of my cousins was inconsolable and three other cousins sat on the couch looking extremely uncomfortable. I asked one of them what was going on. Even though I’d been sitting there the whole time, if felt like I’d missed an event crucial to all the crying. It was only after my aunt told me she just simply hated conflict so much and wished it didn’t exist, that I became slightly aware that nothing big had really happened. Simply that someone had done something that the other person didn’t see as right.
So I guess deviance is really the root of it all here. How can I still be deviant when I’m living by my own rules? There’s no one living with me telling me when to come home. The girl down the hall sometimes notices when I come rolling in at the lovely hour at 3 am. And she doesn’t notice it in a way that is condescending or judgmental. Just in a way that lets me know she heard me sneak in. Even though I really wasn’t sneaking.
Ah yes. How can I forget. There’s always society and it’s rules and regulations to keep me doing what I’m supposed to. No drinking and driving. Weed is in fact illegal. Don’t forget, you need to get married sometime. Don’t drink and dial. A few pounds less could make your life easier. Don’t drive too fast. I guess there is still chances for me to break rules and not get caught. It’s comforting to know that I still have ways in which I can not only mess up, but revel in tension. Just the same, while deviance is more fun, the blow back is usually too complicated to even want to dip your toe in the pool of breaking societies norms. And even though I’m 23, there’s still the tiniest thrill I get when I get home at a time that even I know is too late.