Everyone has a story right?
My story is dark but I guess it has a light to the end of the tunnel. I suppose the light would be that I’m alive and well. I don’t know yet. I’m still trying to figure it out.
Growing up was far from easy. It started out decent. I had a mum and dad, siblings. Dad was an raging alcoholic and mom was his punching bag. At least this is what I’ve been told. One day dad went down the road for a ball and never came back. We were playing catch and the ball rolled through the gate. Later on that night I got sick and mum took me to the hospital and never came back.
I lost my parents in one day. Dad was in jail and mum ran away so I became a ward of the state. My uncle adopted me. I was two and somehow these memories stayed with me. Maybe they’ve been imprinted or maybe this was drilled into my head at a young age, but this is what I know. I thought I could breathe again. I was safe and sound. Honestly, that was the furthest thing from the truth.
I grew up knowing that my uncle wasn’t my dad but I called him dad anyway. I was always his little girl until one day I wasn’t anymore. The abuse was surreal. Lying became survival. He had his own children and I remember his wife who I called mum would ask me to take the blame for everything her children did. I was young and I did it because it was what I knew. I didn’t break easy and I didn’t cry. I took the blame and the beatings.
I began to lie and steal. It became survival. I mastered the art of revenge. I became quiet and withdrawn. I succeed in school, possibly over achieved. I was bullied for years. Speaking out made it worse so I took it. I handled it internally. Eventually I acted out. I was no longer bullied but I refused to become a bully. I made my own choices.
The pain that you feel after having a rough childhood is surreal. You’d watch movies and wish that you was that child that would have the happy ending. That wasn’t my story. I learned that the physical abuse was nothing compared to the emotional and mental. There wasn’t a day that didn’t go by where I didn’t think about committing suicide and ending it all.
It started in 3rd grade. I guess I never did it because I was too scared. I didn’t know what life after death would be so I dealt with it. I grew up and finished school. Amazing. I met a guy and thought I was in love until he raped me. I was 19. My first time was the worst time of my life. I was so scared I never said anything then I found out I was pregnant. You would figure that once the truth came out that the weight that rested on my shoulders would be lifted. It wasn’t.
In order to protect her son his mother said I was the aggressor and that I had called her son several times. So, everyone believed I cried wolf and I let them. I can never forget the look on my mum (aunt’s) face when I told her. The look of pain and failure, like she failed to protect me from the monster under the bed.
The system failed me or maybe I failed myself by not fighting harder. Maybe I shouldn’t have given up trying to tell the truth but my Uncle believed his mother. Once his mind was made up there was no changing it, so gave up. My uncle wouldn’t allow me to have an abortion so I carried this child for nine months. He wouldn’t let me kill his grandchild he said.
I was miserable. I hated myself for months and months. I tried to self abort but it didn’t work. I was tired. I was locked up by a man who bragged about my accomplishments but was never there. My uncle is the devil’s spawn.
I had the baby and it was a boy. You would think that I would hate the child but I couldn’t. He didn’t do anything wrong just like me. He was just dealt a crappy hand of cards much like myself. So I promised him that I would never let anyone destroy him. He would have everything I couldn’t have.
I didn’t dare give him up for adoption because my uncle would have adopted him. I couldn’t leave him to suffer a life like I had. You see, my uncle is good at providing the financial stuff but showing the love and affection is impossible for him.
I was a single mom working two jobs and going school full-time. I lived in a house where I just got tormented everyday but for my son I smiled through the pain and laughed. His smile never wavered nor did he ever witness the struggle his mom went through. I never introduced him to any guy that I dated because I felt that the guy who would become a part of his life would have to be my husband. It’s a golden rule that I lived by.
I meet another guy. It was hard allowing myself to trust someone but he won he over until one day he got mad and he hit me. I knew it was wrong but giving how I grew up I wondered if this is what honest true love was. This went on for some time. If no one believed me about the rape who would believe that I was being abused physically and sexually. He broke me. I lost sight of what I was fighting for. I was being abused at home and outside. There was no escape.
Still, I didn’t end my life. Eventually the truth came out when he started stalking me. He found me at my college and started an argument that led to a physical fight. He was arrested. It was over….finally. However it was once again just another chapter in the story of my life. My uncle was pissed. I don’t know who he was more pissed off at himself or me. It was the first time I ever saw him attack someone. I suppose that was his way of showing me that he cared.
After everything I went through I felt worthless. I didn’t feel loved or wanted. I felt like my life was a revolving door of pain and hurt. I stopped caring and I became a robot. Did what I was told when I was told to do it.
My way of handling it was cutting because I could never go through with suicide. I’m not proud of it but each slash made it feel better. I doubt anyone could understand but that was my cooping mechanism.
I became an addict. It was hard to stop once it began. It started off as an accident. I accidentally cut myself while washing the dishes. It really did hurt but then there was a sense of relief so it continued.
I lived in a house with people and no one knew what was going on behind a closed door. I started wearing long sleeve clothes to hide it or a jacket. No one questioned my fashion sense. No one looked my way. I was basically invisible.
I stopped laughing and smiling. I did my work and retreated into my bedroom. I took care of my son like I was supposed to. There were times that I resented him but given after everything I’d been through I just wanted a care free life like him.
It seemed like my life revolved around guys and honestly it didn’t. I didn’t go out looking for anyone. They seemed like they were decent people but everyone wears a mask. I wore my mask well…better than others. Behind my smile and laughter was heart break, loneliness, and defeat.
I met someone…yeah…a guy. Like I didn’t learn the first two times right. He was different. He saw through my mask. It took him a while to reach me…the real me. I jumped every time he approached me. Hugging was awkward. He was patient and kind. He moved slow. He waited. He watched.
He told me that hurting myself hurts him. He knew my dirty little secret and never did he have to touch me. He approached me and I backed into a corner. Taking my hand in his, he slides up the sleeve to my jacket and saw my scars. He rubbed his thumb over them and I flinched, not because he hurt me but because for once I was seen. This guy became my best friend.
It’s been four years since I cut. Recovering addict and I must say that it was hard…but it got easier. Its like that mountain that I was carrying slowly melted away. I learned to trust and how to handle my emotions the right way. I’m in a better place.
When I said it gets easier, it does. You just have to be that deciding factor for yourself.
My story hasn’t ended it…
I think it’s just beginning.