Raising his family on a supermarket checker’s budget wasn’t easy, but he managed to pull through. He divorced while his children were young and his wife, Rose got remarried to a wealthier man so he has harbored resentment over the years despite the fact that Rose helped raise their two children and provided financial support when necessary. Garland grudgingly accepted money from her only when it was absolutely necessary and he would grumble when the children would come back from visiting Rose with new clothes and toys. But life carried on and now that his children are adults, Garland feels useless. He still has work and also a bigger paycheck now that he only has to support himself, but that bigger paycheck only makes him feel more useless. His relationship with his son Adam is especially strained due to Garland not fully accepting who Adam is. The biggest burden on him is Paula. He tried his best to get her on the right track, even moving his family from Baltimore to Conroy Valley after the divorce for a fresh start. Garland has grown up in a small, rural town and remembered how peaceful things seemed. But it didn’t tame Paula’s spirit any as she would still go to Baltimore with friends and run with her gang. Garland relies a lot of faith, but with Paula being back now his faith is being tested and he finds himself downing one too many beers each night.
Some people are just rebellious spirits and Paula is one of those people. When her parents divorced she decided to deal with her anger by building another family. She joined a street gang called the Lady Warriors when she was 12 and was arrested numerous times by her next birthday. Her aggressive street persona earned her the name “Enforcer Hayes” among her gang friends and she was feared by many on the streets of Baltimore. Rose tried to cure the problem by buying her expensive things, but that only made Paula believe that she had no reason to change. After one of her many arrests, Garland let her sit in jail to learn a lesson, but Rose decided to bail her out. The conflicting parenting styles caused Paula to favor her mother over Garland, especially after Garland moved to Conroy Valley. Rose finally started to see that spoiling Paula had been a terrible idea after Paula married Clyde and made his life a living nightmare. Although she puts up a harsh facade, Paula has never gotten over the loss of her daughter and has spent years in prison feeling tortured about it. But that hasn’t changed her and in fact her personality has hardened. She is no long a street gang member and is looking for other ways to be “Enforcer Hayes”.
Life hasn’t always been the same for Adam and he has gone through many changes. Adam was born Amelia and realized early on that he was a boy. Garland was proud of his daughters and always treated them like princesses when they were little. He’d go to the dollar store and buy toy tiaras, wands and everything else that would make his daughters feel special. When he was young her pretended that he was a prince in a far off land and that got him through hard times, so he wanted his daughters to have their own version of his childhood game. Adam never was interested in any of those things and would go into his father’s closet trying on dress shoes, ties and hats. At first Garland thought it was funny, but as Adam grew and started picking out all his clothes in the boys section of the store, Garland became worried. Once Adam finally gathered the courage to let his father know his true identity, Garland as crushed. Amelia was his mother’s name and to see that name erased hurt him. Over time his youngest daughter disappeared and he saw a son appear before his eyes out of nowhere. Adam felt wonderful, but that happiness was overshadowed by the feeling of his father drifting away from him. Garland barely speaks to Adam now.