This morning my young friend Cody stopped by. I call Cody my new Vampire. It has been four years since he became like us, a Vampire. All in all he has adjusted beautifully to his situation. Consider that remarkable considering he didn’t want to become a Vampire in the first place. He took an alien situation and made it his own.
This morning there was something different about him. Cody was agitated. I have to admit that I was sort of distracted by his new look. He’d always been a sharp dresser but today he’d gone out full-blown hipster. Like my brother Max, Cody had grown a beard this year. Thank goodness it was short and enhancing rather than distracting. He also had grown out of hair and had a man-bun thing going. The rest of him was covered in black jeans, a black vest and a white shirt. His ears were pierced but no gauges. I swear his eyelashes looked longer.
“I like the look Cody.”
“Tell me the truth. Why was I turned into a Vampire?”
“Are you having problems?”
“Not really but that isn’t the point. Do you know what it is like going out with friends and spending the entire time wondering what their blood tastes like?”
“Of course I do, but that isn’t your problem Cody,” I said calmly, keeping my voice low and steady.
“Can you even imagine…”
I cut off my 35-year-old friend. “It was that or death. You would have died Cody.”
“I did die.”
“And now you’re alive.”
“I’m not human anymore.”
“You’re better than human,” I told him. He gave me one of those looks I get from my own teenage children. “Don’t play the poor me card Cody. You’re lucky to be here. More than lucky.”
“Where is she?”
Sooner or later I knew that would come up. Raise its ugly head is more like it. His ex-girlfriend Jen had staged a car accident while seeing friends she knew were Vampires. Off the cliff they went only to be rescued by well-meaning Vampires. It was a complete cluster F. Besides that Jen had got to be the most annoying creature I’d ever met. I have no idea what Cody ever saw in her. Anyway, Cody was given to me to train and look after. Jen, well, nobody talks about Jen.
“I don’t know where she is Cody. Maybe she’s in Russia with that Snowden guy. Maybe she went to Disneyland. I don’t know.”
He curled his lip about to show some fangs to me then he stopped. Yes indeed my little Vampire was growing up.
“It is all Jen’s fault. She used me.”
“That was four years ago Cody. Get over it. You’ve done great. You’ve moved on.”
We went on for a while about Jen and what had happened and the future. This was the first time he’d ever shown such uncertainty in his situation. It was almost as if he’d gone a step or two back. It was like having another son.
It made me think about being a Vampire and even about being an adult. Change happens. Sometimes those changes are huge. There comes a time when everyone has to grow up, accept who they are and take responsibility for their own existence.
Rule #1: You are responsible for yourself.
There is nobody to blame but yourself. Or nobody thinks a victim is attractive. After the age of 24 you can’t blame anything on your parents. You’re grown. Everything is on you.
Rule #2: Manners.
Use them. No self-respecting Vampire wants to spend their existence around the uncouth trash of the world. If you don’t know about good manners then learn about them. Ask a friend to teach you. Google it. Good manners will open doors faster than anything I know. Good manners will kept you fed.
Rule #3: Learn how to dress.
Are you really going to wear that? Learn how to dress and groom yourself like an adult. You’re a Vampire but Halloween is only once a year. Now is not time to let your freak flag fly. Tight black dresses at the drug store, red lined capes before midnight and blood stains are not acceptable. You’re a Vampire not a political statement or even an expression of your own self. Show some class. You can be unique but tacky is NEVER an option for all adults (Vampire or not.)
Rule #4: Look Forward
Look back occasionally but always look forward and always know where you are right now. I was at a party a few years back that a lot of people in their 80’s and 90’s were attending. One of my more human friends asked me if the old folks all talked of the good old days. I told her that they talked about the future. They talked about environmental issues, politics and their own plans for the future. Many of them were on the edge of one hundred years. The reason they were still glowing and thriving is because they looked forward – not back.
So warm blood used to run through your veins. Now it doesn’t. Get over it. Move on. Look forward.
Rule #5: Own it.
Whatever you do – Own it. Be in charge. Grab your chances and opportunities without doubt or fear. There are always set-backs. You’ll have centuries of set-backs but you’ll have centuries of even more triumphs. Own your space. Own yourself. Own your path. If someone says you can’t do something it is your job to prove them wrong. If you don’t own it you might as well just crawl into a crypt.
Cody calmed down and helped me finish up a job. Sure he is 120 years my junior but we’ve become fast friends. I’ve watched him grow up and from what I see he’ll do fine. He’ll do more than fine.
~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman