Open Letter to my Mother 11/7/14 (Repost)

(Moved from previous blog address)

Dear R.S.,

I wanted to share with you something that took place at my women’s group last night.  It’s a group I attend every Thursday night at my church.  It’s a great group of very different but similar women who love Jesus.  And that’s why we get together every week, to learn to be more like Him.

Last night we did not talk about the Bible though.  We all brought pictures of ourselves as young children and answered four questions.  In summary, 1) where did you grow up between 5-12 years of age, 2) what was the source of heat in your home, 3) who was your “warm place” growing up, and 4) when did you know God was a presence in your life.  Not word for word but that is the gist of the conversation.

I brought the picture that Michael stole for me from your album.  The one of us at the fair sitting together in the “special bus”.  That picture is one of my favorites because 1) Michael and I are together, 2) it says “special bus”, and 3) I am smiling.  It’s one of the few pictures of my childhood, of which there aren’t too many, that I am smiling.

But, as I listened to the other women I began to feel anxiety growing inside.  Why?  Because it really hit me to my core that I have never, not ever, in my life had that “warm place” that they all talked about.  For some it was a grandparent, for others their dad or mom, or an aunt.  But I had nothing.  No one.  I couldn’t think of one person.  It made me sick.  And then it made me really, really sad.

When I left there last night I started to drive home, it was foggy out and I could barely see.  As I let the reality of what you stole from me really sink in, I sobbed.  I sobbed so hard that I gave myself a headache.  And then I got pissed.  Really pissed.

You stole my childhood from me.  You gave my innocence away.  You let your husband physically abuse me.  He beat me.  Do you ever consider the enormity of what you allowed to happen right in front of you, to your daughter?  I was what, 4? 5?  What did I do to deserve being whipped with that razor belt or smacked in the head with a meat clever?  But I have to say that eventually you finally realized that he was going to kill me so you were thoughtful enough to send me to live with my grandparents in another state.

You know, with the grandfather who fathered his own grandchild.  That’s where you sent me to be safe from your husband.  Well, I wasn’t safe.  And how much anger do you think his daughters had after being raised by that monster.  They helped raise me.  They were angry, hurting women.  They weren’t very nice a lot.  And I grew up being told and believing that I was not good enough.

You did that to me.  And I have cried about it, grieved about it and have moved on to become a better woman.  But sometimes, like last night, it all comes back.  And regardless of my wanting to control it and not let it affect me any longer, it does.  It will always be at the very core of who I am no matter how far I run from it, or pray about it or try to disregard it.  You wounded me. Deeply.

And I just thought you should know.

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Where’s the love?

divineapples

“Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it.  But one thing I do:  Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead”  Phillipians 3:13

I’ve needed to read that verse for some time now and, maybe I have.  Tonight it had a whole new meaning and I’m hoping.  Hoping that I can really tune out the screaming in my face.  From myself.  Stop listening to the lies I tell myself on a daily basis.

“You’re not good enough”, “nobody likes you”, “no one wants to be your friend”.  And so on.  The list is incredible.  And very sad.  You would think by now I would have myself together but.  Nope.  Life hasn’t worked out that way for me.  Yet.

It makes me think of this guy I met, I don’t remember exactly, but it was when the internet was fresh and new…

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Each day seems harder

divineapples

Each day seems harder to me.  When I’m thinking, this should be getting easier.  Less painful.  

But it is not.  This morning I spent 10 minutes of my driving time cursing at God to point me in a direction!!  It was definitely not stated in those words but eventually I got to the church I was heading for before I didn’t follow directions.  

Pulled into the parking lot and can you believe, the guys parking me in a snow covered spot couldn’t tell I had bald tires?  Geez.  I made it inside.  Service started late.  That was well played to make me feel like utter crap for cursing Him a few minutes earlier.  

The church I walked in to was very big but they only have one service time and there was between 2 and 300 people.  I’m not good at estimating that sort of thing.  Let’s…

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“God sets the lonely in families”

Aside

Loneliness is the state of being alone and feeling sad about it. Your loneliness might lead you to sit at home listening to depressing songs, or it could inspire you to go out and meet people.

You can be alone — and enjoy every minute of it. But from time to time, most of us experience loneliness. It’s a feeling of sadness or even anxiety that occurs when you want company.

Just wanted to start today with the definition of “loneliness” so it can be clarified that I’m not “alone”.  I’m not alone because I spend most of my time with my son.  Whom I adore.  I’m not alone, I’m lonely.

To know why I am feeling this way, you would have to understand things that have occurred in my past.  Most everything I read tells you to forget the past (like my previous post) but when it makes you who you are, it’s kind of impossible to just erase the memory.

The first memory I have as a child, I was probably about 4 and at the time I lived with my mother, her second husband and my four siblings, two older and two younger.  I remember being tossed into the closet in the bathroom, I’m not sure what I did but it was a daily occurrence in my young life to be physically abused by my mother’s husband.  Okay, so the closet may not seem drastic but the cat’s litter box was in there also.  Not pleasant. The door on the closet was the kind with slats on that you could slightly peek through if there was light in the bathroom.  My brothers would come in there often just to sit and talk to me.  When my mother recently made an appearance in my life, after the death of my brother (my best friend), she told me of the day she decided to “do what was best”.

She told me that I was in trouble for something again and “he” had punished me, I think that may have been the day he busted a leather belt on my ass, but I can’t be positive. After he punished me, he yelled my name and told me to come to him.  As I stood there, in my mother’s words “I peed myself and he told you to get down and lick it off the floor”. That was the moment she decided it wasn’t safe for me there anymore.

It wasn’t the fact that I was only allowed a room in the walk-in closet when there was a bedroom right next to it that no one slept in.  It wasn’t all the beatings he gave me.  It wasn’t all the time I was punished and spent in utter “loneliness”.  I didn’t see her again until I was 17.

Most of the time I spent growing up was lonely time.  My love for reading was what got me through most of my adolescent years. Reading allowed me to pretend I was somewhere else.  Someone else.  Living a life that wasn’t the one I was living.

Then one day, I turned 18 and all the boxes and bags that I had packed months prior were loaded in my 1976 Pontiac Astre and off I went.  Finally.  In control of my own life.  My own happiness.  I could decide what I wanted to do.  What I wanted to eat.  When I wanted to go to bed (and it wasn’t 8 o’clock anymore).  I could sleep until noon if I wanted.  And no one, NO ONE, could tell me otherwise.

But that was short-lived.  Rick came into my life a week before I was 18 and I was in LOVE!!  Or so I thought.

Instead of this wonderful life I had planned for myself, a happy marriage, a job and most important…KIDS!!, five years of my life was spent “lonely”.  Most of those five years I chased my husband around, searched for him and met every girl he slept with, if they weren’t already my friends.  In between those times, he was incarcerated.

But, just as I had done for many years with my mother, I was intent on convincing him of my worth.  Which I never believed for one second about myself. Unfortunately, before our five year anniversary, I watched, in the middle of the night, as my husband died.  Right there, on our couch.  “Spontaneous cardiac arrhythmia”.  Some freak skip of his heart.  To say I was devastated would be such an understatement.

I was 22.  Two babies under 2.  Where was the life I had planned?

Well, that is probably way more than anyone wanted to read but it’s a start hopefully to understand why I struggle with this whole “loneliness” thing.  I’ve done it.  I’ve been there. As the story continues you will see that I’m not exaggerating or overstating the impact loneliness has had, and is having in my life.  I’m so over it and I’m ready to experience something else from here on.  This song pretty much sums me up at this moment.  At this point of my life.  It just seems a little unfair to me.  I’m not a bad person.  I don’t deserve this.