The Courage to be different.
I grew up in a seemingly normal family; a preacher’s daughter, youngest of four children. However, there was an underlying problem in our home. It wasn’t everything that it looked to be. There was my mother who by all standards looked to be the perfect wife and mother; she was a baker, the pastor’s wife and beloved by all who met her. Then there was the Pastor my father. He was a pillar to the community and to the church. He was a domestic violence councilor, and all around hero to every one that met him.
Let’s start out with my mother, she to everyone who met her a saint; however, beneath that halo and under that bun of hair hid her horns. I swear to God she was the Bride of Satan herself. She was the kind of mother that wasn’t very nurturing and she was a miser with money. She was verbally and physically abusive to just some of her children. She played favorites and she didn’t care who knew it. My sister and my second to the oldest brother where then and still now her “Golden children”, they got anything that they wanted and it didn’t matter who needed or wanted anything else. My oldest brother was my fathers from another marriage so he wasn’t there much and didn’t have to deal with her but then there was me, and I swear that she either found me or hated me from conception. My mother believed that her oldest daughter; my sister should be taught everything there was to know because it was her family role to learn and take over the traditions in the family. It was my brother’s place to protect, provide and hunt. Then for my role, my role was to stay out of her way and she told me this role often. So I decided that it was my role and duty to make her angry and I worked very hard at that. I took that job to heart but I have to tell you the payout on the job was not the greatest. I like any little girl wanted my mother’s attention and I didn’t care what kind I got. If it couldn’t be positive attention it was going to be at least something. I used to think that I would do anything for her love not anymore.
Well let’s not forget about daddy dearest. He wasn’t as bad at her with the beatings and all that, but the things that he did left even deeper scars. Up until I was five years old he was the world’s greatest daddy. He would protect me from the she-devil and he really was an awesome dad. Then one morning after the she-devil went to work he did the unthinkable. My father molested me, I didn’t then or for a very long time after that know what that meant all I knew is that he hurt me and I didn’t trust him any longer. Everything changed for me that night, I started having problems with wetting my bed, which my mother said I was being lazy for and would rub my nose in it or beat me or both. I started becoming very reclusive and somber. I distrusted everyone and I started having horrific nightmares. This went on until I was fifteen. It stopped because my father lost his church, because they thought that maybe he should stay home and take care of the troubles in his home rather then all the others. I was the trouble and everyone knew I was trouble but no one cared enough to find out why. He drove long haul trucking for a year, long enough for me to grow a backbone and realize that being alone wasn’t the end to my life. He used that as a threat to keep me quite, telling me that I would be alone and no one would want me, it worked for a long time.
At sixteen; when he could no longer drive truck due to medical reasons, and he came home I knew then that I could no longer be in the same house as he so I left. I decided I wanted more out of life. It was very hard to find a place to stay, or a job at sixteen and I learned very quickly the only way to do things was to lie. I lied and got false identification and set myself up in a crappy apartment and got myself a job. Life wasn’t the glamour that I thought that it would be. It was very hard and utterly lonely at times. I was so messed up that I started dating the wrong types of men, all older and all abusive in one way or the other. I swear I looker for the most abusive jerks that I could find because it was familiar and all I knew. I dated a bunch of loser, and after two marriages, a slew of bad relationships, and tons of wrong choices I decided I wanted better. I went to counseling and started the healing process to getting my life on track, and on the road to where I wanted and needed it to be.
Well, that was thirteen years ago. I have since moved three thousand miles away from all the heartache and trauma of my past only this time I wasn’t running. I have a family, two beautiful daughters whom I would sell my soul to protect, a semi-wonderful life because we all know life can’t be a romance novel even if we would like it to be. All because I choose to step out of the known to the unknown and no longer be a victim but to be a survivor, and I know why that I did that I didn’t then but I do now. When they placed each of my daughters into my arms for the very first time it was so they would have a better life. I may have walked through hell, but they give me the courage everyday to see past it, and the courage to be different.