This letter is only the beginning of what I’m sure will be a few letters. There’s all too much to say in just one, so I will be spreading it out in parts. It’s easier for me to handle that way. I figured I’d start with my childhood. What I can remember of it anyway. I guess what I will consider my childhood is anything before grade 9.
So, I want to make clear that not all of my childhood is seen as a bad memory. There are plenty of good things that come to mind when I think of growing up. The problem is this: the bad was really bad. I can’t remember a whole lot of growing up. I contribute that to the fact that maybe I just don’t want to remember. The holidays are coming up quickly though….something I was always fond of when I was a kid. We’d always go to grandmas on Christmas eve and spend time with our whole family. Waking up on Christmas day there would be “foot prints” from Santa Clause, which only added to the magic of the day. Those days were always good days.
Summers were spent out in our massive front yard kicking a ball back and forth. Or spent on our little homemade track, practicing tractor pulling. We’d make our once a summer trip to lake Michigan and play in the water and look for pretty rocks. We had our little swimming pool that we’d go swimming in almost every day. Not everything was bad. The early years were better. Maybe I was just too young to understand. Or maybe you got worse as I got older. I guess I will never really know.
I do remember though not being allowed to go to my friends’ houses. We’d get invites for birthday parties or sleepovers, or sometimes just to come over. It was never allowed. The only friend I ever got to see was Kaylee, because she lived right next door to grandma. Grandmas house was always exciting. We’d go there one night a weekend. We’d play outside all day, and grandma would make dinner that was always so delicious. Kaylee would come over and play until the sun went down. That’s the thing though-rarely were we allowed over to her house. No more than 200 feet away, and we still weren’t allowed to go over there. I still remember grandma introducing her and I. It was a winter day and she was outside building a snowman in her front yard. I am forever thankful for that day.
So, friends were hard to come by outside of school. That hurt, a lot.
You and dad fought. A lot. It didn’t matter if it was in front of us kids or not. Whenever, wherever. I remember one night hiding under the coffee table because you and dad got into it so bad and I was terrified. I cried my eyes out.
I remember the night you threw your bowl of ice cream across the room at him because he asked you if you should be eating that much ice cream.
I remember there was a hole in the bedroom door where a fist had once been thrusted into.
I remember fights over the tv, food, how he went fishing too much, or how he wanted to see his friends. Fights were stupid. I thought that that was how all families were. I didn’t know that people shouldn’t use so many harsh words and so often.
I remember that one day you got so mad at me. I am sure I was being your typical annoying kid, asking if I could play with my karaoke machine too many times. Well, that karaoke machine went flying towards me down the hallway, finding itself hitting the wall and dropping to the floor. My poor little karaoke machine.
I remember my brother stole some bubble tape from the store. You found out, and somehow it became my fault. You told me you hated me and wished I was never born, and to go to my room. Nothing hurt as much as that. I remember very clearly playing with my barbies on my bed. Crying, and not understanding what had just happened. You came into my room what must’ve been ten minutes later, and apologized.
I remember you found a “love note” I wrote in the fifth or fourth grade. You yelled and me and spanked me.
I remember running away in fifth grade. I told one of my best friends that you abused me. Never physically, but verbally. I told her all the things you said, and even wrote her mom a letter telling her all of these things. Her mom was heartbroken. I wanted so badly to be adopted. I didn’t want to be a part of the family anymore. The things I told her in those letters were never lies. That was the thing. I remember hopping on the “wrong” bus to go home with her. We were gonna play on the trampoline and drink lemonade. We didn’t get to do that at all. Instead, I ended up in the back of the principles truck with our guidance counselor. They were VERY mad at me. I waited and waited for you to come get me. You and dad cried, a lot. I went to school the next day and they kept asking me if everything was okay, they wouldn’t leave me alone. I guess I got too sassy with them because they brought me down to the office and yelled at me. You asked me later why I would lie to them. Why I would write all those lies to my friends mom. I wasn’t lying. I was no liar.
I remember getting suspended in the 6th grade for something I didn’t even do. That was the one day you had my back. You called the school to get me unsuspended, but they said there was nothing they could do about it. You were upset, but not at me. We went to the store and you let me get some rolos.
I remember as a child that I was more of a daddy’s girl. I loved fishing and tractor pulls. I loved mama too, though. The first scary movie we watched together was Freddy VS. Jason. That movie began our love for horror movies and our many nights staying up watching them.
Do you remember my fear of thunderstorms? Do you remember my OCD? That was one thing that was so hard for me. I had to have everything parallel on the coffee table and you guys would mess it up and laugh at me as I cried. Eventually that stopped and I went to other things, like routines and a fear of germs. The thunderstorms were the scariest though. I would ask you every night if it was going to rain. If it was, I had to sleep on your bedroom floor. I remember I couldn’t sleep until I told you I love you, and I had to hear you say it back. I feel bad now, because I feel as though I rarely told dad that I loved him. I know that you would get frustrated with me asking every night if it was going to rain. Sometimes you would sigh, other nights you’d just tell me. My fear was so intense that I would sweat, shake, and feel like I was going to throw up.
I remember being an angry child. I would have these outbursts, and you and dad took me to Barns and Noble to get me an anger control workbook. I don’t think it worked for me.
I wish that you would have taken me to a therapist at a young age. I don’t know if you recognized that I needed one, but I knew that something was wrong with me. It was hard for me, and I still don’t know if you knew.
I remember having a social worker come to the house. I never knew what it was for, but I was always terrified of her.
This is a bunch of jumbled up mess, but this is the best I can do. I know that I’ll remember things later, but these are the things that stand out to me the most. These are the things that shaped me as a child. These things were hurtful. Some of these things aren’t all that bad. Or maybe they don’t seem all that bad. But-these are the things that scream out to me.
This letter will probably be the shortest one. Simply because I don’t remember a whole lot. I remember most of my teen years, and those were the worst years for me. Those were the years I sunk into my lowest points.
You weren’t always someone I saw as a bad mother. Maybe that’s an awful thing to say, but maybe later you’ll understand.
Bye for now,