Struggles, Beginnings and the peace gained 

     
           This is the garage door that started the journey for me.  I took this picture yesterday.  Six days from now I will have been with my boyfriend for twenty one years.  Some days that feels like a century… But I digress.  When we first got together,  his “grandma” (who was actually his adopted mother)  let us live in her garage.  She had a bathroom put in on the back porch of her house (and had him pay her back for it to teach the twenty one year old us about bills) but she never charged us for the utilities. At the time I was to headstrong to see the gift that she was giving us… She was stern and slightly scary to me.  I have learned that she really was an amazing woman since. 

          I can say that it was a struggle to make the garage into a home.  We ran gas lines for a stove.  We acquired a refrigerator from a local mission.  He and I slept on a large sofa we were given. I failed to appreciate the struggle then,  because at twenty one I was ignorant of the way of the world.  I had seen the darkness in man,  but I had really never had to do the housing thing.  When my family didn’t have a home I lived with my grandma.  So I always had a roof over my head.  The garage wasn’t even the worst place I have ever lived. I have lived ten people in a two bedroom trailer with no running water.  That is another story though. 

      Now Joe is working on getting the house.  He inherited a fourth of it and his adopted sister is giving him her share.  So we have only two halves to buy before it is ours.  This is a convoluted and stressful time for me.  I want to keep the memories of this house.  I want the stability for my family that the house will provide. But the house also has baggage.  Baggage in the form from of people who are currently in the house.  People who we are trying to get settled.  There is a lot involved with this. Add the fact that we are not able to settle in and you have the chaos of my life. 

      Then I looked at the garage door and felt like it had come full circle. Which is why I took the picture.  The feeling of peace came through in the picture. 

Labels

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So I have my entire life been unable to fit exactly any label. I was sporty,  nerdy,  geeky,  a loner,  a bookworm,  social,  antisocial,  introvert,  extroverted,  a joiner…well you can see where I am going with this. It was not a true issue for me,  and was all in the same breath. I always felt like I was on the outside.  I laugh… I collect labels… But then I would hide the fact that it hurt.  Why should I be a label?  I have never been very good at limiting myself…

That being said…. My twelve year old is very much like me.  She is fluid in who she is and what she does. She asked me today…. Mama why do people have to label each other?  Why can’t they just accept that each person grows and change with each passing day? …….how is it that this child who has not yet reached even a decade and a half umderstands something that eludes over half the human race?

Perhaps we need to learn instead of separately labelling each other,  to instead celebrate the uniqueness that is the human race.

Seasonal Blues

Screenshot_20161214-060114.pngso this time of year it is so hard for many people.  I often feel like it is the worst because of the expectations we are put under to be nice to people who we can’t stand the rest of the year.  Or the fact that we are separate from the ones that we love and have no way to remedy this. Sometimes it is just the weather changes and the sickness that seems to linger about making it even more difficult to be social.  I just wanted to reach out and say that you are not alone.  If this is a difficult time for you,  reach out.  There is always someone who you matter too… Whether you know it or not.  And in the holidays we some times forget about telling the ones around us how much we care.  For some the inner voice is not a kind thing.  Trust me when I say that you are not alone.  ❤

random thoughts

Ok remember I said I was half mad….here is another slice of my mental world.

  • pen names seem to have more uses than I thought, but I wonder if it really matters
  • people keep expecting me to tell them who my writing style is like…I really can’t begin to explain that I write, and know that others like what I write…but I will never be a good judge.
  • I have no self image. I am me…but I don’t see myself as good or bad…I just am.
  • this sounds like I am whining.
  • the holidays suck because i want so badly to be with everyone I love…but how I see them isn’t usually how i am seen.
  • my daughter cracks me up. she has such a delightful intelligence and a smart sense of humor.
  • I have an editor for Death of Neverland who actually made it less stressful. my insecurities make such things painful.
  • youtube has some really great science based experiment videos
  • I wish I was less insecure
  • I am unsure how to express my thoughts when I am not writing poetry or stories. I end up having trouble with what I say being misconstrued. I am a very honest person, but it doesn’t always come out exactly how I mean.

What is writing?

So I am a published writer. I have just recently published my third children’s book.  I have published several volumes of poetry,  and a novella.  I write this blog and contribute regularly to another. After all of that,  sometimes I feel doubtful that I should claim that I am a writer. I do not have a novel,  and the current story that I am working on… Well I am likely doing a novella again. I am at five thousand words… And I realized that I am about half done. So should I stop calling myself a writer?  NO, because I am still writing.  I will likely have a new volume of poetry to release early in 2017. I will still finish the death of neverland.  I may never write a “Full” novel,  but I wonder if that really is that big of a deal.

So what is writing?  Writing is taking one’s heart and pulling it out through the fingertips.  Writing is creating a tender spot on your own soul,  and exposing it to the world. Writing is late nights,  sore fingers and crying yourself dry. Writing is the feeling of accomplishment of a job well done. Writing is all the tortures of Hell and all the pleasures of heaven. And in the end… Writing is an obsession stronger than any.

#amwriting #always

 

define strength 

                          I am strong.  I have not always known what that meant. A lover I had once told me I was strong,  and I asked him to define what strong,  emotional or physical. He said both.  Perhaps because it was what he thought I wanted to hear. Truth is I have never been a physically strong person.  I was a bit more then though. I was walking two miles a day in high school and lifting weights.  By the time of the conversation,  I was starting to be less active due to pain. So physical strength has lessened by time and disability.  

              However,  if I am honest with myself, I have always been emotionally strong. Which takes a toll.  I have had to heal. I am quick to cry,  and very quick to defend my boundaries.  Those boundaries don’t have to make sense to anyone else. They exist because of my life has been a mess of epic proportions. 

                  I was born to a pair of teenagers. Mom worked all the time,  she was rarely home. She managed to graduate high school when I was five.  Daddy was in and out of my life.  We moved alot.  My parents married when I was six,  which lasted about four and a half years.  The first four years we moved 27 times.  So as the new kid, constantly,  and the shy introvert… Well I had trouble making friends.  So much so that my grandmother introduced the idea that reading could fill the gap. 

                Which is why I was I was able to be molested.  I was not a  social child and he took advantage of how lonely and misplaced I was. I was strong enough to gather my courage and tell him to stop.  I told him that I would scream and not stop if he came near me again. So he made sure to scare me. Which keep me quiet for four years. *not that speaking up did any good * 

                   When I was eleven,  Mom met an amazing man. She moved us,  my brother and myself and her,  into his place. He had six sons,  though most were grown up and gone.  He had his youngest two still.  He lived in a two bedroom trailer on land he was buying. The trailer didn’t have running water. We lived a mile from the road,  three miles from the store and six from town. Mom worked.  My stepdad worked.  So often it was just me and the stepbrothers. 

                  We moved into the new trailer two years later,  six months after my son was born.  I was thirteen. It had running water,  and I was no longer sleeping on a couch in the living room. However,  now I had my stepbrother threatening to kill me,  and I was expected to do all the household chores. The boys were allowed to help outside. (Mind you I am a terrible housekeeper).  

              My mom took custody of my son,  to try and allow for all of us to grow up. During this time,  because of my stepbrothers actions,  she kept sending me to stay with family.I was raped during this time.  I was over at a friends house with my son,  and a guy who I had been seeing used it to abuse me.  Him and four of his  friends. So I was suicidal,  because the first thing that was really good in my life was being taken from me and I was not as important to my mother as her husband’s sons,  and because I was so very tired of life hurting. This is when I started dissociation. I had been told I was lying about the abuse,  And I was feeling like I was losing my mind. My mom and I were constantly fighting,  because of it.  She couldn’t see me,  all she saw was a mirror.  So I  moved in with my favourite grandmother.  She was a special lady.  She had broken her back three times and had to have it fused five.  About the same time,  she had been put on oxygen for emphysema. So it was a case of her needing me and I needed to be somewhere mom wasn’t. 

                  I have struggled to put the pieces of my life in a way that makes sense.  What I have listed above is sixteen years.  I am fourty one.  I have not had an easy life.  I doubt that it will change,   but I am strong enough to handle what ever comes my way.  Just occasionally I have a day when I have to say… 

Rape culture

So I am not an easily triggered person,  usually.  However,  here lately social media has been testing the limits. Several times I have opened Facebook and found articles about children dying because they were raped.  Then there are the articles about rapists getting nearly no punishment for what they have done. So then I take to Twitter,  which is usually a little bit more light-hearted. Until the presidential election.  Then there started a new hashtag. #WhyWomenDontReport. Well,  that is a huge can of worms. It caused me to discuss this with Joe.

He said that most of the women who he knows,  or has known have been either raped or molested.  Then as we were talking about it,  he considered.  Of the twenty women who he was intimate with,  he said he was unable to say for sure on four.  The rest were survivors.  That is not even a random statistic.  That is women who he was with.

I was floored by that.  So I posted on Facebook. (So there is a thing on Twitter… #whyIdidntreport
I DID REPORT! At least the first time. I was told that I was a liar. Not all rapes go unreported, some people speak and go unheard. I didn’t speak of the second time because I knew I wouldn’t be believed.) I had several of my friends express similar situations. Think on this,  according to Google,  one in three women are raped in their lifetime. Yes men are also raped,  but I am not speaking of them,  not yet anyway.  So 1/3 of all women.  We as a people need to address this… That is a huge issue.

Add to the issue the ignorance of Trump’s “locker room talk” and the treatment of the victims by those who have the power to change things.  Is it any wonder that sexual assault is the least reported crime?  We make it hard for the scared to overcome the fear instilled by violence to step into a safe place…  And I for one am tired of that.  I was raped at fourteen and molested as a small child.  I am not a statistic.  I am  not a victim.  I am not allowing Rape culture to break me. I speak my truth,  and invite you to do the same.