I left home for a job at Seaworld when I was 18. I dropped out of highschool, got my GED, and left. TW:
After the breakdown, attempted suicide, mental hospital stay, it seemed going back to highschool was not a possibility. Wish I felt supported and loved in whatever choice I had. I had no choice so I slept in my car while I worked that job and anyone’s couch that offered. Health issues were arising and I left that job to come home. Home wasn’t really home though. My mom had a new boyfriend and my room was boxes. My father remarried I think at this time and was living on a different lake with his new family. I could have lived at home with my mom and her boyfriend and the boxes but the childmolester living across the lake unprosecuted, protected, skiing past my window just made that an impossible situation for me. I had nowhere to go. I moved in with my boyfriend pretty quickly after my mom flipped out and hit me in the head. She’d probably deny it. It happened though. The hair stylist had “ruined” my hair while trying to turn it back to its natural color and accidently turned it jet black. I was staying with my mom at the time and did not know where to go but she firmed up that choice for me. I packed my bags and did not live with my mom again. I moved in with my boyfriend at 18 years old. I lived with him for a year. I had my first signs of the impending muscle disease for that year with him. Fortunately, those symptoms went mostly into remission. After he and I broke up though I scrambled. I was trying to get a college degree. My dad was giving me some money each month but it wasn’t enough to not have to work and go to school. Everyone I knew was working, going to college, and living in an apartment. I could only work 3 hours a day though because I became easily weak still and wanted so badly to get my Early Childhood Development degree. I didn’t know that that weakness in my body was just this muscle disease. It makes me sick to think I was just wandering lost unable to support myself with a very well off father…hard memories.
I lived with one man renting out a room from him for about a year. I will sing his praises to this day to anyone who asks. My parents were thrilled I moved in with him because he was an olympic athlete I guess. They were idiots. I never should have lived with my boyfriend at 18 nor this man at 19 but then again I should not have been molested my entire childhood. My mother and my father did not make me feel it was an option to live with them. My nana, who I will sing her praises to anyone who will listen, did not let me live with her because I had a dog. Nana was my only advocate but that dog kept living with her an option.
So I moved into a shit apartment that I would not let my worst friend live in. I had a string of nasty roommates and a few were pretty nice.
I struggled. Even with my dad giving me some money monthly it was difficult to pay the $500 rent and have enough money for electric and food and gasoline to put in my car. That would be why I sold my body to pay rent one month. The details of that somewhere back years ago on my blog.
I often felt mixed feelings for my father. He was giving me money. I was grateful for that. But it was almost like just a pay off. I felt like it was a, and still do, “Here’s some money now go away.”
It is a stark contrast from the time and money he spent taking care of his step son who had illness as well. He bought him groceries, mowed his lawn, paid for everything. I’ve reflected back on my dad many a day. I rarely saw my dad. After I got married he made it clear that I had someone to take care of me now and his step son didn’t so he was needed with him.
It was perplexing because before I was married I didn’t get my dad’s time, his compassion, his companionship, his anything, just his money. That money was a drop in the bucket for him too. He didn’t offer for me to live with he and his new wife ever. His wife, who was a very kind woman, and her children and their children came first.
The day that this muscle disease hit me hardest and prompted the trip to the Mayo clinic for a biopsy and diagnosis was a real eye opener for me. I had my young daughter out at my father’s house for his birthday. I watched as his wife’s grandchildren crawled all over him and loved on him calling him “Georgie” affectionately. My daughter had seen him a handful of times and wouldn’t go near him. Yet these kids must see him so often to have that bond and love with him.
Walking up and down from his house to the lake was taking its toll on my legs. Something was happening and I was worried I would not be able to drive home. I told dad we had to do the birthday song because we needed to go. Dad wanted to wait for his step son to arrive who was 3 hours late. He finally arrived after he’d been out hunting. Hmm. As soon as I saw him come in the door and everyone elation at this family moment I felt, I knew I did not belong.
We left and I barely made it home. My legs failed me and it was only a month after that I was diagnosed with a muscle disease.
Now, dad came to every dance recital and every birthday of my daughter, and the obligatory christmas get together. I saw him about 3 times a year my daughter’s entire childhood. I remember again telling him I needed him in my life. Needed a father. I had this muscle disease and was struggling caring for my daughter. He said very clearly that I had a husband and his time needed to be spent with his step son. He made promises he never kept. We’d get together for dinner once a month he promised. Never happened. He would come to dinner once, next time then he would forgot and left me here with a cold dinner. My mom came over that night because she knew he had broken my heart one too many times. I just did not matter to him. That has been the hardest realization of all of this. I did not matter. He never stopped long enough for me to matter. His new family mattered. I don’t know what made them different. Maybe they were not molested and he didn’t have to deal what that evoked in him when it came to me. But I’m his daughter. But I know that meant nothing.
My mom broke up with her second husband and moved in with us for a year. I don’t recall much of that time. Isn’t that odd. I don’t though. What a strange winding road I have lived. My mom mattered to me and I felt I matttered to her. Later I learned I did not.
At my daughter’s birthday party one year dad spent most of the time on the phone with his stepson. I could hear his stepson yelling at him and I watched my father just take it and act like a beaten dog. It was a bizarre thing to watch. Who was my father. What was his connection to his other family. My twin brother and I talked about him many a day. How we had to just take what we could get because if not then we would not have a father at all.
My dad bought his step son a house in another state and my dad retired and as far as I know has been traveling around in his RV.
A few days ago I had my husband drive me past my old apartment and I took a picture of it. I was living there with my dog Jordy. My health was better temporarily and I would take Jordy for runs every day. We jogged past a cow field and I would take him off his leash and he would run and run. I loved the “cow road” and we still call it that as we pass it. I met my husband at that shit apartment.
Had I not been living there I would have never met him. He carpooled with the neighbor across the street to the academy. Through that neighbor we met. We became friends. I also met my neighbor’s other friend who I dated and later moved in with to yet another shit apartment. That apartment was just a hellhole not because of where it was but because of what happened in that apartment. Yet, without living there I would have never known that neighborhood existed. When my husband and I married we lived right across the road from that apartment for the first 7 years of my daughter’s life. I drove there yesterday. I wanted to remember the good. I first saw the crappy apartment.
I stood in the road and turned around to see the apartment/condo my husband and daughter lived in.
The lake had good. The water was my solace.
That nasty apartment had the cow road and also the place I met my future husband.
The horrid apartment with my boyfriend pointed me to my future first home with my husband and daughter. It was not the most beautiful place. But it had a patch of grass. I planted azaleas. When I visited yesterday the azalea was blooming. There was an owl statue sitting up on the wall in the front of the apartment. We had the end unit. Across the road from that home were acres and acres of woods. We used to picnic, walk the dog, and play at the park every day of my daughter’s 7 years. There were trails back there we walked daily.
My daughter loved nature and art. I bought her some non-toxic fingerprint. She put her handprint on the wall in front of the apartment. And a foot print. When we moved from there after building this house we are in now, we tried to pressure wash that off. We even used acid to get it off. It wouldn’t come off. When I visited yesterday I almost started crying when I saw the owl sitting up on that wall with my daughter’s hand and foot print still on that wall. Those times were precious and good and pure.
When visiting my old lake house there was also an owl in the water.
The first house my husband and I lived in had an owl statue too.
Here at this house the owl visits me. A real owl!
Here at this house I have my own trees and the prairie near by and miles of roads I can take my wheelchair down and watch the flowers and the sunsets.
Each place I have lived there has been beauty. Some have been harder to find.
The circumstances by which I lived there each time led me to something better. If you look at that crappy apartment you would never know that had I not lived there I would not be living here now with my husband.
I went back to my old apartment yesterday and the one before that this past weekend for a reason. I wanted to find the good. I wanted to find that in each of those circumstances something good did come.
I know I will never understand my father. That circumstance I will never know the why or the good. I wrote my dad a letter about all of the abuse, about his lack of presence. A letter to tell him goodbye three years ago. I took him out of the equation so it stopped me from being disappointed and let down and hurt by this man. The letter I sent had a chain reaction whereas my entire family chose him, chose lies, chose their own illusion. The circumstances of that letter were not what I had anticipated. When I sent it I did not know I would lose every single person in my family that I thought had loved me. But I did. Every one of them. No twin. No older brother. No mother. No cousins or aunts or uncles. Nobody. I know it seems to be hard to find the good in this circumstance.
There is. Their choice allowed me to see that they were never good for me in the first place which I never would have seen on my own. I would have allowed their disregard for the abuse, their inability to validate and stand up for me to continue forever. I would have allowed them making me feel like I didn’t matter to chip away at me until there was nothing left.
This muscle disease should have brought them running to me. It never did. My mother was the only one who ever helped me during that time.
That letter of my truth revealed their the truth of them. There ended up being good in that circumstance after all.
So here I am with my daughter and husband who love me unconditionally. All because of that crappy apartment I lived in. Maybe that is the only good I can find in my father. That he did not help me enough while he lived in his beautiful home on the lake and let me live in that shit place. The good in my father was that he did nothing. Because of that I met the man of my dreams. So thanks dad for nothing, yet for everything.
I sit watching the wind in the trees as I write that. Happy that whatever the circumstance that got me here, I am glad I still have the ability see the good.