Crossroads

“Why keep giving it away when there is money to be made,” said the smooth talking older man to me. I was 17 years old, had been expelled from high school and was running the streets of my Las Vegas neighborhood with the other misfit kids.

“Let me help you and we both can make some money, baby,” he continued.

The next day I agreed to have him send me a cab to take me to a hotel on the Strip where I would “entertain” his drug dealer who was in town. I was promised $100 if I would take good care of his friend.

I dressed my teenage self extra carefully. I put on my tightest jeans, my girliest blouse and slipped some high heel boots on. I painted my face with extra make-up. I was turning myself into a cliche of what I had seen on tv and of the streetwalkers I had seen around my city when downtown or on the Strip. It was like putting on a costume.

I waited at the small neighborhood shopping center for my taxi. My friends — a term I use quite loosely — milled around, smoking cigarettes, swapping stories about how high they got the night before as if they were war buddies. This was the hang out, a little strip mall that hosted a 7-11, a mom and pop diner (which is where I learned to play pinball), and a tax office. It was a weird place for bored teenagers to hang out, but it was central to where we lived, our version of a town plaza. So we gathered there, day and night, smoking cigs together, scoring weed and other mind-altering substances, and it’s where I waited to be picked up for my first paid gig as a sex worker.

“We know what you’re doing,” said one of the guys with a bit of I-know-your-secret in his tone.

I was startled. I had not told anyone, not even my closest friends. The only guy who should know about this would be Robert, the fucked up older man who obviously had no problem preying on vulnerable teen girls for his own gain. But Robert had called the payphone to message me that the cab was on the way. Whoever took that call apparently got the 411 on why a taxi was coming to pick up one of their own. This was back in the day, way the fuck back, when payphones could be called and without cellphones or internet, we learned that payphone’s number in that tiny little pathetic strip mall to message each other. Even Robert the older guy who did not hang out in the parking lot knew that number.

With his pronouncement, I was soon circled by the parking lot misfit kids who wanted to know how much I was gonna make. Commentary soon took place of whether or not it was fair. “Don’t get ripped off,” advised one guy. “When do you get back?” asked another. “You can buy a lot of weed and beer with that $100. Partaayyyy !”

I laughed and smiled, weirdly enjoying the attention of my parking lot peers who were celebrating my apparent good fortune. Yet in the pit of my belly there lied a cobra of shame coiled and ready to squeeze the life out of my morals. There was a knowing, an inner knowing of some kind beyond my years that I was standing at a crossroads. Robert Johnson had his crossroads with the devil who gifted him with magic hands to play the blues. My crossroads was with a devil of a different type.

In the cacophony of all the revelry a quiet voice spoke to me. My friend Charles had been sitting there on the ledge of the cement planter having said not a word nor even looking at me. He was a strange one, always had been. He had long blonde hair, a skinny ass and the most bizarre laugh especially when he was high and belly laughing. I had slept with Charles several times and found him to be kind-hearted. I used to have a crush on him. He was older than the rest of us, just barely 21-years, so of course he was our favored liquor buyer. Charles was good people.

“Wanna go to my house?” he asked. He lifted his head and looked me right in the eye. “Wanna come over?”

It was as if everything froze. My anxiety about going to service someone for money was gripping my body like a strait jacket. My imagination was full of all the different ways I could spend that $100. Charles, with those blue sky eyes of his stared at me with intent as his invitation hung in the air. Together we stood at my crossroads.

A burst of wisdom showed up and with her a trace of courage to defy Robert and his fucking drug dealer and taxi cab. “Yes,” I replied in a soft voice, ‘Yeah, let’s go.”

We both got up and began to head to his house where he lived nearby with his parents. Kids partied at his house all the time, his parents too drunk too care. As we walked away the parking lot crew began shouting, “Where you going ? Your taxi is coming. Robert is gonna be pissed if you’re not here!”

“Just keep walking,” said Charles.

When we got to his room I thought for sure he would want sex, and I would have submitted for he had provided me an escape from what I knew would have become a life-defining choice. Instead, he asked if I wanted a glass of water and then left the room, leaving me in solitude with all of my angst, confusion and shame. I burst into tears.

Charles and I got high together. We made small talk. He did not ask about Robert or the drug dealer or the $100. We just hung out. To this day I have no idea if he ever knew how significant his invitation was to me. He later overdosed on LSD and accidentally shot his brother’s arm off. He was never the same, his mind too fucked up to recognize his friends or lovers.

Robert called me the next day, cussing me out and telling me I owed him. I was numb to his anger.

There would be two other men who would try to pimp me out before I finished my teenage years. I lived in Vegas, there truly was money to be made if a girl worked her sex.

When I was 18 years old someone invited me to a Christian concert. I went only because they also had coke which we were supposed to enjoy after the music. But when the singer asked people to raise their hand to ask Jesus into their heart, I found my hand going up involuntarily. I didn’t want to be a Christian (boring!), but I was having some kind of spiritual encounter that felt like Love had come to town. It was a different kind of crossroads than that damn parking lot.

My life changed that night. I stopped being a wild party girl running the streets of my Vegas neighborhood. I got a job. I went to church and bible studies and later my zeal took me to Hong Kong as a fulltime Christian missionary. I lived in that city for almost seven years. Christianity saved me from a life that I’m sure would have included drug addiction and prostitution if not prison or an early death. I needed to be born again into a new Pam who didn’t fall prey to scheming low-lifes. And I was.

That was so many years ago. I no longer consider myself a Christian – that’s another story, a rather long story for another time or two – yet I will always be grateful for my Christian history. I have nothing but respect for those who are bonafide Christ followers. It was Love and Acceptance demonstrated by Jesus People to me when I was as fucked up as they come that helped shaped my tenuous young life. People of faith literally guided me out of the valley of shadows and death.

I’m not sure why I needed to write this today, but there you have it. I’m looking out the window of my art studio at a gorgeous Northwest blue sky. My life is clean, healthy, vibrant and centered. I have the most amazing tribe of friends and my creative business is taking shape. I am one grateful woman.

 
(Visited 165 times, 1 visits today)

27 Comments

  1. Sisilla February 2, 2019 at 3:17 pm

    So this is why we get along so well…Christians didn’t save me, recovering Alcoholics did 🙂 But it was the same thing: people of true Faith. People who grow up like we did never really learn to have faith in anything positive, do they?’

    Funny, my crossroads involved sex for drugs, so again, pretty much the same thing: Will I or Won’t I become this type of person? Thankfully, we both had things happen at that moment that allowed us to turn another way…Thank you for making that choice, for choosing to be here today, instead of who knows where 🙂

    Reply
    1. pamjohnson February 3, 2019 at 1:23 am

      Sisilla !! For this reason as well as many others we get along so well ! I’m so glad you found guidance and redemption in the recovery movement. It’s astounding how one decision can affect our entire existence and the course of our lives. So grateful you and I both had some kind of inner knowing that we paid attention to and made solid decisions that have served our well-being instead of destroying it, though so crazy crazy to think of how close I was (and you too) to veering down a hard, destructive path. Much to be grateful for. Love and appreciate you much !

      Reply
  2. Alisa Culpovich February 2, 2019 at 7:28 pm

    Pam thank you for sharing your experience. Our crossroad moments should never be forgotten. Love your heart💓.

    Reply
    1. pamjohnson February 3, 2019 at 1:24 am

      Thanks so much for your comment Alisa ! YES, our crossroad moments are significant. I’ve had a few. THis one was one of the most pivotal crossroads since I was so young. Crazy to even think how my path could have gone had I waited for that cab. Forever grateful for Charles my parking lot angel !

      Reply
  3. sky 777 April 8, 2019 at 3:09 pm

    Websites that don’t get into DMOZ, which is a large directory that helps your placement in search engines,
    will lose a step in ranks. Adding your site to DMOZ can be a painful and long process,
    a bit surprised if you get into this human powered directory at entirely.

    Some browser’s search engine marketers will state you to make sure you utilize a keyword rich domain, but remember that it is my experience that specified
    local niche . isn’t that important. A keyword rich file name will do about comparable thing.

    I would recommend creating your page out in the place of WordPress blog post.
    With your landing page, you will either in order to write a
    critique for a unit you’re promoting or basically up relevant
    content to your niche and throw in affiliate links at appropriate places.
    Other easier alternatives that will not require you to handle with hosting, script installation, or purchasing a domain are Hubpages, Squidoo,
    and Doodlekit. Building content is the simplest way to help your SEO ranking and provide you with a valuable want to your web site visitors.
    Plan to update your landing page frequently have the ability articles are actually keyword well-off.

    Using a good page URL when writing your blog is often missed by lot of people.
    When testing your page it’s a good understanding to include one exact line
    of text using your writing on the page. Ask
    them if the line you me is relevant to the title and Meta tag that you’re testing.
    Through constant testing and re-testing, you’ll have a great idea of what’s currently working and just what
    is a fading way.

    Websites not Pre-sell. Identical . promoting information, a service you have got to have some pre-selling art
    in could. Give prospects information and things which usually are
    worth their interest.

    Its how one can separate your own family your links out away
    from the rest belonging to the ones on-line. Its the first step, but start with
    thinking on which you would like your site turn out to
    be about.

    With this list that continues to grow, the way of rivalry was announced that
    arises between and among the websites on impact is dynamically changing and evolving.
    This means that if you want to be adaptive on the continued
    change, then you’ve to be adaptive out of all changes that may happen. https://joker.vin/index.php/other-games/sky777/25-sky777-2

    Reply
  4. m rollex11 April 21, 2019 at 11:08 am

    Choosing the perfect gift for a specific person is an arduous task to execute.

    Yes especially if the other individual do not know his or her personal interests.

    Customers will definitely spend hours in stores trying
    to find the customized birthday gifts for the other
    individual. When individual shop for a gift, one method to ensure
    that she / he will love the gift. There are many personalised gift
    tips to choose from. Of course, all is determined
    by the occasion as well as the budget.

    By reading owners’ comparisons of the various
    KitchenAid mixer models online, you can build a good opinion about which
    is actually better selection for you. You can be aware of people’s true to life experiences making use of the mixers plus learn concerning shopping experiences online.

    Final Order – system the time when materials are to take
    most care and attention. Place the order very carefully,
    put my way through writing. Give measurement the professional otherwise a
    wrong measurement can ruin clothes. Also openly talk about alterations
    required in the garment. Check with the firm
    and also dress engineer. Avoid taking clothes without proper identity even when they provide cheap
    deals. They might just sell you polyester claiming it
    to be silk. Write the complete details for this transaction regarding receipt.
    Fix a day for final trial.

    I decided they would call my friend and discuss it, accomplishment knowing achieve for the conversation but trusting my intuition. Seeking approval is deeply rooted in me, and at the time
    it’s pretty much all I cared about. But I’m glad I had the courage to call, because
    I received a strong gift that continues for me whenever I’m along with alternative
    driveways.

    If perform visualize creatively, then you’ll put
    your fears down. See your self as you’d like to be.
    Remember: your body loves both you and has the to heal itself perfectly.
    Your only job is to trust it and your fridge.

    Be rational and think about what you are researching for in other women. Other types ?
    something which your partner does cant you create? If you have some special fetish, ask
    your partner whether she will meet those needs of yours.

    A facial rejuvenation can give youthful appearance you are searhing for by removing many
    on the lines and wrinkles of this facial tissues and muscles and tendons.
    It can offer lasting results. Discuss your options with your surgeon to ascertain if this is a great option to the specific specs.
    When it is, it can create a profound difference in your views your overall seem to be.
    Many people get a boost of confidence as a result. https://joker.vin/index.php/other-games/rollex11/24-rollex11-2

    Reply
  5. 3win8 slot April 22, 2019 at 12:59 am

    As we mentioned in the summary these article, individuals more important than ever to write and publish quality message.
    Although the ability to craft good writing regarding your business has always been and will always be vital,
    the internet has broadened the scope of what can be done and
    what must be done.

    Blog Marketing Tip #3: Consistently Sell to Popular Blogs:
    And I do not mean cyberstalk them. It doesn’t increase the likelihood of being displayed.

    In fact, it will significantly decrease these.

    Great content: Though is that possible not look into it, good content is ideal SEO practice to follow for site or company.
    You can stuff your web page and meta tags and links with
    keywords, but if you don’t have good, and also fresh content, everything is going to fall flat.
    Yes, keywords must be present to get the attention of search engines, but more
    importantly, content material should be interesting and skim well.
    Webpages which are stuffed with keywords authored by some SEO ‘experts’
    often don’t really read well and with regard to why internet
    websites do not attract visitors at the majority of.
    That is why it is to certain that you that could has good, interesting, relevant
    and fresh content all of the time. Should you can’t write well yourself, get someone do it for users.

    Back the actual world days, may find only limited font styles that you can choose due to.
    These are the usual classic fonts that advise like Times New Roman and Arial fonts.
    But today, while flood of font designers, there are actually hundreds of hundreds of font styles that
    you can use. Identical . looking for something classic or something
    contemporary, can easily find the perfect font type for a lot more.

    Traffic is the life-blood any sort of website requirements to sell or market products.
    Within the traffic superior terms you get the chances of making
    more sales. When someone does possess a lot to do with that old numbers
    game or the law of earnings. The law of averages is controllable.

    The choice is yours and just how much thought and also you are
    willing to put into the job that determines the verdict.

    Links: It’s understandable that a lot more must have links,
    so that they can widen the ‘information’ arena for the
    visitors to your site. Let the additional products and services that you sell be known to people,
    who’s able to either purchase for them or try them out. Your mastery to device ‘backlinks’ to your will surely be enhanced with increased experience.

    The backlinks – the specially coded ‘HTML URLs’
    – get you back to some main site by the clear way of specific
    keywords and phrases. For this to work, ‘word’ your links particularly.
    Rather than the monotonous ‘Click Here, put your creativity to test – either persuade
    the visitors to just click your links by calling them to immediate action,
    or allure them with on must have special serves up!

    Nuts: Nuts are expensive, but a few nuts when bought with shell, finally
    end up to be cheaper. Nuts high in fats, all-important fats are fantastic as effectively monosaturated
    and unsaturated saturated fats. Nuts come with a good content of protein, fatty acids and E vitamin. Nuts are particularly
    nutritious, as such even little intake ultimate is sufficient in order
    to get the required enzymes. Nuts are an anytime snack,
    they could be had roasted, raw and also added to salads. https://joker.vin/index.php/other-games/3win8/17-3win8-2

    Reply
  6. Unife July 17, 2019 at 10:16 pm

    Наша международная компания проделывает свою работу по восстановлению и очистки труб по водоподготовки и водоотведению современным способом гидродинамической очистки на новейшем оборудовании. Использование подобного вида гарантирует восстановление параметров стальных труб к начальному уровню, уменьшаются расходы электроэнергии на 15процентов, растет промежуток времени работы стальных труб на двадцать лет до капремонта, повышаются интервалы между проф. сервисом.
    Проводим все виды работ, в частности:
    Услуги видеодиагностики -внутренней и внешних инженерных систем различного назначения.

    Но почему выбирают эту компанию?
    Значительный прозводственный опыт – более 200 настроенных очистительных сооружений в Рф и за её рубежами, наличие всех лицензий и разрешений на осуществление строительно-ремонтных и инженерных процессов, создание и конструирование экологического, безопасного, энергосохраняющего, очень эфективного промышленного оборудования, послегарантийное техобслуживание, профессиональный и серьезный коллектив.

    Чистка фильтров скважин : [url=https://akvasos.ru/]увеличение производительности артезианских скважин[/url]

    Reply
  7. Wendell August 21, 2019 at 3:35 am

    Way cool! Some very valid points! I appreciate you writing this write-up
    and also the rest of the site is very good.

    Reply
  8. custom blythe August 22, 2019 at 6:06 am

    Good day very cool blog!! Man .. Beautiful .. Wonderful ..

    I’ll bookmark your website and take the feeds also?
    I’m glad to seek out numerous useful info here within the put up,
    we need develop extra strategies on this regard, thank
    you for sharing. . . . . .

    Reply
  9. https://forum.teamspeak.com/ August 22, 2019 at 6:35 am

    Hiya very cool website!! Man .. Beautiful ..
    Superb .. I’ll bookmark your website and take the feeds additionally?
    I am happy to search out numerous helpful info here within the put up, we want work out extra techniques in this regard, thanks for sharing.
    . . . . .

    Reply
  10. together.jolla.com August 22, 2019 at 8:42 am

    I liked up to you will receive carried out proper here.
    The sketch is attractive, your authored subject matter
    stylish. nevertheless, you command get bought an nervousness over
    that you would like be turning in the following. sick undoubtedly come more
    until now again as exactly the same just about very incessantly inside
    of case you protect this increase.

    Reply
  11. http://84272.homepagemodules.de/ August 22, 2019 at 12:58 pm

    I was just looking for this information for some time. After 6 hours of continuous Googleing, at
    last I got it in your website. I wonder what’s the lack of Google strategy that don’t rank this kind of informative sites in top of the list.
    Usually the top web sites are full of garbage.

    Reply
  12. Jannie August 27, 2019 at 11:55 am

    Way cool! Some very valid points! I appreciate you penning this
    article and also the rest of the site is very good.

    Reply
  13. Dan August 28, 2019 at 2:34 am

    I got what you intend,saved to bookmarks, very decent web
    site.

    Reply
  14. enetget.com August 28, 2019 at 7:25 am

    I was just searching for this information for a while.

    After six hours of continuous Googleing, finally I
    got it in your web site. I wonder what is the lack
    of Google strategy that don’t rank this type of informative websites in top of the list.
    Normally the top web sites are full of garbage.

    Reply
  15. tawk.to August 28, 2019 at 9:06 am

    I think that everything said was very logical. But,
    what about this? what if you wrote a catchier title?

    I am not suggesting your content isn’t good, but what
    if you added a post title that makes people desire more?

    I mean Crossroads – Pamela Sue Johnson is kinda plain.
    You ought to glance at Yahoo’s home page and note how they create news headlines to grab viewers interested.
    You might add a related video or a related pic or two to grab readers excited about what you’ve written.
    In my opinion, it might bring your website a little livelier.

    Reply
  16. www.spreaker.com August 30, 2019 at 2:45 am

    I liked as much as you will receive carried out proper here.
    The comic strip is tasteful, your authored subject matter stylish.
    nonetheless, you command get got an impatience over that you want be turning in the following.
    unwell indubitably come further before once more since exactly the same nearly a lot continuously inside case you defend
    this hike.

    Reply
  17. devpost.com September 1, 2019 at 12:26 pm

    What you posted made a great deal of sense.
    However, think on this, suppose you added a little content?
    I mean, I don’t want to tell you how to run your
    blog, however what if you added something that makes people desire more?
    I mean Crossroads – Pamela Sue Johnson is kinda boring.
    You ought to peek at Yahoo’s front page and note how they write article
    headlines to grab viewers interested. You might add a related video or a related
    picture or two to get readers interested about everything’ve got to
    say. Just my opinion, it could bring your posts a little bit more interesting.

    Reply
  18. issuu.com September 3, 2019 at 7:26 am

    Wonderful article! This is the type of information that should be shared around
    the web. Shame on the search engines for no longer positioning this post higher!
    Come on over and consult with my web site . Thanks =)

    Reply
  19. Emile Zaunbrecher September 9, 2019 at 12:46 pm

    This web site is really a walk-through for all of the info you wanted about this and didn’t know who to ask. Glimpse here, and you’ll definitely discover it.

    Reply
  20. who.is September 16, 2019 at 11:59 am

    I liked up to you will obtain performed proper here.
    The cartoon is attractive, your authored material stylish.
    nevertheless, you command get got an nervousness over that you want be delivering the
    following. in poor health surely come more beforehand again since exactly the same just about a lot ceaselessly inside of case you protect this increase.

    Reply
  21. https://english.edusites.co.uk/?URL=examenget.com September 18, 2019 at 2:31 pm

    Terrific work! This is the type of information that are meant to be shared across the internet.
    Shame on the seek engines for not positioning this post higher!
    Come on over and consult with my web site .

    Thanks =)

    Reply
  22. https://devpost.com September 18, 2019 at 5:17 pm

    At this time it sounds like WordPress is the preferred
    blogging platform available right now. (from
    what I’ve read) Is that what you are using on your blog?

    Reply
  23. www.sandiegoreader.com September 18, 2019 at 6:25 pm

    Hi there very nice blog!! Guy .. Excellent .. Superb ..
    I’ll bookmark your web site and take the feeds additionally?
    I’m glad to find numerous useful info right here in the post,
    we’d like work out extra techniques in this regard, thank
    you for sharing. . . . . .

    Reply
  24. https://www.edocr.com/user/quanfore September 18, 2019 at 8:59 pm

    Hello There. I found your blog using msn. This is
    a very well written article. I will be sure to bookmark it and return to read more of your useful
    info. Thanks for the post. I’ll definitely comeback.

    Reply

Leave A Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *