I find it interesting, that no matter how little we may read of each other’s personal thoughts, when it comes to finding out about people’s secrets, and the things they hide away…..interest ensues. Some of the moments I shared yesterday I had only shared with friends very close to me, and of course there are more. But today I thought I’d go to the dark side. The dark side isn’t pretty, but life isn’t always pretty. More than likely reading this will not make you happy. But maybe some of you can relate. Maybe some of you have been through the same tribulations. Maybe some of you will feel relieved to know that you aren’t alone. So here it goes.
#1. I am from Cut-N-Shoot, Texas. I know what you are thinking, but yes it is a real place.
#2. I come from a background of alcoholics, and drug users. If you know me at all, you know that I do not drink or do drugs. I never picked up the habits. Yes I have tasted alcohol. But no I do not drink.
#3. My mother, and I had a horrible relationship growing up. I am sure many of you can relate.
#4. We didn’t figure out who my biological father was until I was 18. We believe we found him. I met him twice. But never hear from him anymore.
#5. My mother married a man named Randy when I was about 7, he was an angel. Life got better with him around. His daughter Britney, became my sister. For three years life began to be filled with more love than hate, and more laughter than abuse. But Randy suffered from Cancer. We lost him around my 10th birthday, and with that Britney was taken away by her biological mother, and I didn’t see her again for 8 years. Her mother was also a user, and drinker and our mother’s hated one another. She wasn’t even allowed to come to the funeral. I lost the only father I’d ever had, my sister and an entire family with my step-father’s death. The 10th year of my life nearly destroyed me.
#6. After that, mother lost her mind and most of her heart, she was destroyed as well. I think Randy was her angel more so than any of the rest of us. She stopped having a reason to be healthy, to have goals, to be happy, to be alive. Her art design business fell apart. Which was sad, because she was a beautiful writer, and painter. She started drinking, and doing drugs daily on a much more dangerous level. She became much more abusive, and hateful. Our house began to be a haven for very ominous characters, and bad habits. She disliked me. She disliked the responsibility that I brought into her life. And she reminded me often that she hadn’t chosen to have me, that my grandparents had. Thanks Melton, and Ella Belle.
#7. My grandmother Ella Belle was my savior. An Irish woman with a heart of gold, she was my everything. I looked up to her, and she loved me with all her heart. She died sleeping next to me when I was 11. That death was hard. She was at peace when she died, so that made it better.
#8. Mom had begun a couple year long absences in my life after Randy died. I do not think my mother hated me, I just believe she hated her disposition in life. She was an artist, a poet, and dreamer. And she somehow got stuck in Cut-N-Shoot, Texas with a little gypsy kid that needed way too much attention. She was depressed, she was angry, she was empty. I actually liked it better when she was absent anyhow. I didn’t like that she never left food in the house, and that it was always cold in the winter, and too hot in the summer….but I liked how peaceful it was when she was gone. When she was back it meant loud noises, messy and sleepless nights, and bruises. I was scared of her. She was a wicked woman in my eyes, and I spent most of my childhood hiding underneath my bed from her.
#9. I used to collect castles, miniature castles, of all sorts. My mother broke most of them by the age of 12. After her death I discovered two semi-broken castles left from my collection. I still miss my castles.
#10. Things got worse as the years went on, and it wasn’t just her that was abusive, but it was the men that she brought home that began to be my midnight villains.
#11. Someone at school finally left the last clue for my counselor. It had been whispered in the hallways that something was going on at my house, and that I was always hurting myself or bruised. I didn’t have many friends so no-one really knew what was going on at home and the few friends that did know, knew to keep it quiet. I upset one of them one day at school, and she let the cat out of the bag. My counselor was my best friend, and she told me she had no other choice but to report what she had heard.
#12. Introduce…….case workers. My mother was in Florida at the time and I rang her to let her know. She received a monthly paycheck for me after Randy died, she knew if I was taken away it also meant the money was gone. She came back home and bought me a new outfit, told me what to say, and said if I messed up then I’d end up scrubbing floors in an orphanage like little Annie. I was a 12 year old girl, and I had one meeting with caseworkers ….that convinced them I was healthy, happy and in a safe environment. They never came to my home, they never contacted my mother, and they never saw me again. They were awful at their job.
#13. I ended up leaving home a year or so later. Life had gotten really hard, and I was in a dark place. I was always bruised, and emotionally falling apart at school. I was very troubled, and my teachers didn’t understand me. I ran away to live with my only high school friend, Heidi. Her and her family saved my life. They gave me my life back. I need to have more contact with them than I currently do, I owe them a lot.
#14. I worked my ass off to be top 1 percent in my high school class, and I received full scholarship to college. I left for college immediately after graduating, and never went back to Cut-N-Shoot.
#15. Over the next 10 years my mother called drunkenly a couple of times. They were never nice messages. But I never saw her again. I held a lot of hate for her. Unnecessary energy lost all those years.
#16. Until I was 26. My uncle called me to tell me my mother was hospice. He called a couple of times, and told me that she didn’t have long. My hate for her was still very much alive, and I told him I wasn’t going to go to see her.
#17. One of my close friends, Nayeli, convinced me that I should go. And she drove me to the Cut-N-Shoot to see my mother one last time.
#18. I read a letter to my mother that day. I didn’t really know how I would feel about seeing her. I had pretty much let the world know I didn’t have a mother, and had no emotions towards her whatsoever. But as soon as I stepped into her hospice room I fell apart. She had been in a coma for a week, and spoken to no one. She was a skeleton. She looked older than my grandmother when she had died. She had liver spots everywhere. Her organs were failing her. You can’t look at a human in that condition, and not feel the utmost empathy, and love for them. I sat down beside her crying. And read her a letter I had written. At the end of the letter, I said ” Maybe one day we will get a chance to do this all over again.” She woke up all of the sudden, and said “Why would we want to do that again?”….we laughed and I told her about my life. She never apologized, or asked much. She was who she was. I left her room to go print photos from all the places I had seen, and bought her flowers. I came back and decorated her room for her. But she had already fallen asleep. She never spoke to anyone again after that day. She died a couple of days later.
#19. I demonized her for most of my life. I said awful things about her, and I played victim to my childhood for a very long time. I hated my entire family, the ones that hadn’t died, for a very long time. I blamed them for not taking me in, I blamed them for not taking me away, and I blamed them for the abuse I received because of the position I felt they had left me in. I am learning that everything my mother may have done to me, or not have done for me is not an excuse as an adult. I am still working through problems with trust, intimacy, love and abandonment….but I believe no matter our childhoods many of us face the same problems.
So in summary. My biggest secret is that we all have dark shadows. We all have hidden secrets, and painful pasts. But they only effect our future’s if we allow them. I am who I am today because of my past. And although there are a lot of things I feel wrong by in this life, I at least got to live it. My mother gave me breath, and no matter all of the things she did or did not do….that was the most important.
Do not be a product of your environment, or your scars, or your secrets. Life can be the darkest of darks…..but you are the only one that can flip the switch, and turn the lights back on.
I know that most of the people that read my blogs, or posts do not know me on a deeper personal level. And they may see the rosy highlights. But it’s not always rosy. And to appear that way would be improper. This is the truth. Part of the truth. There is light, but there is also…..real rawness to each person’s journey. And mine has been quite raw.
So here are my scars. Here are my wounds. Here is the real me. I am both. I am light. I am dark. I am strong. I am broken. Love me. Hate me. I am still the same. Effected only by what I allow myself to be affected by. And I am still working on getting my shield just right.