Choosing Sides. Amnesia?

My last post made me think. I was thinking about it all day, thinking about that and more.

That was not the first time I had encountered my stepfather when he was angry, nor would it be the last. What it made me realize, though, is that every time something like that happened… I moved out. He was not kicked out. My mother did not leave him. I was the one who left; I was the one who, essentially, was told she was in the wrong. At least, that’s how it feels now.

I spoke with my mother that day. I asked her several things, mostly about my childhood, before and after that specific incident. I fibbed to her a little bit, not stating that I awoke in the middle of the night nearly screaming because of the memory of it happening appearing in my dream. No, I didn’t want that to haunt her, knowing that she put her oldest child and only daughter at risk; I didn’t want that. I did call her that day with a purpose that day.

Throughout the whole day I had been thinking, going through my memories of the incidences and there are only three specific times that I can remember living at my mother’s while she was with my stepfather and then having to move back in with my Grandparents after something happened. Two of which have to do with my stepfather. One of them, there is a 2-3 week blank in my memory, starting with my last day of school when I lived with my mother and stepfather & beginning again with my first day back after winter break at a new school and living with my Grandparents again. Somewhere in-between that timeframe of 2-3 weeks something happened and I moved out.

I was in fifth grade. It was exactly a year before I had my seizure, leading to my diagnosis of epilepsy.

My mother could remember the incident of my stepfather chasing me through the house in a rage and me running to my room in fright, closing the door behind me and locking the door and him bursting it open, breaking the lock then hovering over me cowering on my bed, with his fist above his head; she could remember that clearly. That was the summer before I advanced to third grade.

My mother could remember the incident in ninth grade, the incident from the previous post. All of these were at least 10 years ago.

So how does she not remember the incident from the winter of my fifth grade year? I had called my aunt, her sister, before I called my mother to ask about it because, honestly, I was afraid of asking my mother. But my aunt didn’t have an answer; she didn’t know.

I can’t even give you a straight answer on what my mother told me. She was vague and tried to stay away from the topic of what happened. In the end, though, she did blame it on the fact of “that might have been when your absence seizures started”.  Absence seizures being basically when I space out. That’s the only outward sign and then I have no recollection of what happened during said time period of the seizure. They normally last 3-5 SECONDS.

How do I tell my mother, who definitely knows all the information about my epilepsy & the types of seizures I have, that there’s no way it could have erased 2-3 weeks of my memory and that I have AMNESIA. How do I tell her that she’s lying and it’s so obvious it’s ridiculous? How? What could have happened to me?

My husband thinks that there’s a possibility that something severe happened to me and she’s covering up for my stepfather. Honestly, I don’t doubt it. It just makes me worried because nobody will tell me, even more-so because she is still with my stepfather.

I’m scared.

 

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[Bad] Dream of a Memory

Do you know anyone that’s ever been abused? Any sort of abused? I do. I have. I was. Many forms, by different people at different times in my life. Most of the time, though, it was on repeat by one person: my stepfather.

For the most part I’ve gotten over it. While my mother is still, unfortunately, married to the man that treated me so badly throughout my childhood and adolescent years (and even now he bad mouths and talks down to me, but I’ve grown more of a back bone and will talk back to him despite fear of retribution), most of my communication with my mother is via telephone as she lives over an hour away and she works over 8 hours a day, every day, every week with the [very] occasional day off; she’s the main “breadwinner” of their household as my stepdad is (surprise-surprise!) a convicted felon & although he could find work at, the very least, a manufacturing plant, he refuses to work anything other than odd jobs that he runs himself.

Therefore, my communication with that entire household is limited.

And my mother.

I love her. I do. I may not always agree with everything she says. I may not agree with everything she does, especially the fact that she’s still with my stepdad, but I love her nonetheless. I will acknowledge her faults, though most of the time not to her face because she won’t most of the time. She confides in me and I, her. We understand each other because of, oddly enough, my stepfather. We have a mutual understanding between us and I’m thankful to her that, although she’s my mother, my Mom, she chose to have me live apart from her.

And that’s where everything comes full circle as to why I’m writing this tonight.

I woke up around three this morning, my eyes wide and in a panic. I knew I was in bed and if it wasn’t for the fact that my husband’s arms were still around me I probably would have screamed.

I dreamt of a memory of days long since past. It was nearly 9 years ago – the winter of 2005 – and I was living with my mother in the home she lives in now. It’s a small, technically one-bedroom, house that at the time housed my Mom & stepdad in what is now a closet; my two younger brothers, who were then 6 & 8 years old in what is now a combined living room/Mom & stepdad’s room; and me, in what is now my youngest brother’s room, that back then was right next to my mother and stepfather’s “room” and only separated by a sheet. There was no privacy whatsoever. It was Hell on Earth.

Normally I wouldn’t be living with them; I abhor my stepfather and nearly always have, but my Grandmother, whom I had been staying with, gave me an ultimatum that pushed me and I took it. I wasn’t going to give up a friendship for her old-fashioned ideals, but that’s a different topic altogether. So I found myself moving 45 minutes away and switching schools in the middle of the fall semester my first year of high school. My mother was happy that I was finally coming to live with her, but she wasn’t happy about the circumstances behind it. Honestly, everything was going well until the last day of school before winter break.

One of my friends, specifically a male friend, asked if he could come over and hang out for a bit after school. I told him I’d ask. I was more than naïve back then, I guess; he purposely left information out to me and I didn’t see the signs. Either way, we both got permission for him to come over and he rode the bus home with me. I’m going to point this out now: I never thought of him as anything more than a friend; he was JUST a friend to me in my mind. Well, apparently everybody else thought otherwise – including him.

He ended up eating dinner with my family because his mom hadn’t picked him up yet. When I asked him why she hadn’t shown up yet, he said that she wouldn’t be there till around 9PM. I was pissed! He never told me that and I knew, at that moment, I was going to get hell from my stepdad as soon as he left.

I was right.

After he left and my brothers were firmly asleep my stepdad started in on me and it just kept coming. I don’t remember everything he said; he asked me so many questions – accusing me of lying when I hadn’t and every time I denied lying he just got angrier.

What I haven’t said yet is that my stepfather is an alcoholic. I know by that time he was drunk for sure, but I couldn’t tell you how long he’d been drinking that day.

Finally, at one point, I was sent to bed. I think it was around 11-11:30 that evening. I was tired. I’d had a long day at school and then I’d been grilled and yelled at and intimidated by my stepfather. Nobody likes that. I fell asleep listening to him yell at my Mom, but the words were a blur to me, even then.

I was woken up again around 1AM, being dragged – literally – out of bed by my arm by my stepfather. He was pissed, and that’s an understatement. I don’t remember what the discussion at that point was about. I was being questioned again about my actions that evening and why I did what and several other co-existing categories. I remember answering something honestly and it must have been the wrong answer, and something that he disliked extremely or considered a “smart-ass remark” because the next thing I knew I was dodging a glass plate being thrown at me. If I hadn’t moved it would have hit my upper left shoulder near my neck. I don’t remember much after that other than crying and being scared.

I moved back to my Grandmother’s within days after that. I don’t think anyone would question why. It was my Mom’s decision to move me back.

The thing is, this is only one of the instances of something abusive happening to me but for some reason it’s the one that pops up the most in my memory, in my dreams; it’s the one that troubles me the most and I don’t understand why.

I was scared then and it scarred me enough mentally and emotionally that it still bothers me to this day, enough to keep me awake at night. The abuse I’ve suffer throughout my life from my stepfather, and inadvertently from my mother, is probably the one thing that I haven’t completely gotten over and I’m not sure that I ever will. I think that’s what scares me.

Now it’s not the terror of being physically dragged away from my bed in the middle of the night by someone else; now it’s the terror of waking up and having to drag myself from my own bed because of someone else… because I’m afraid to face what might be in my dreams.

Never Woulda Guessed

I’m excited about this. I have to post it.

I went to court earlier this week. I was so nervous. It was against my ex; I was suing him for full custody, back support, and to raise the child support that I’m supposed to be getting. I was afraid of the things he could say; even though I knew I had the advantage I was afraid he would lie about something. Or exaggerate. Anything. I was afraid. Nervous to a worrisome extent.

Then I got to the courthouse with my fiance and a couple friends, meeting my lawyer there 30 minutes before everything started. My lawyer and I discussed everything while my friends kept a look out for my ex, who hadn’t arrived yet. Occasionally they were asked questions too, but that wasn’t a big deal.

The big deal was that by the time court was due to start my ex had not shown up. We deduced that he wasn’t going to.

After vigorous questioning by my lawyer, since it was a fill-in judge in place of the original judge on the case so we had to bring him up-to-date, and giving the judge the “evidence” from the past couple of months, I was astounded by what was decided. I didn’t know it could go the way that it did since my ex wasn’t present.

I was awarded full custody with visitation only when arranged prior with me, with my permission and supervision only. Child support was raised to the maximum per week, which totals to over $1000 per month. And I was awarded all the back support my ex owes me for the past year, which is quite a lot.

Now, if I ever get any of the money that’s owed me is another story. :-/

I’m uber excited about the full custody thing, though! That was my main goal. Sure, the child support thing is going to help out a LOT, but I wanted my children in my care and mine alone. Joint custody obviously wasn’t working out between us and we needed something more steady, especially for the children. I just want the best for them and that’s all I’ve ever wanted. It’s not spite or hate for my ex, even though I do dislike him with a passion; it’s love for my children. I believe in father’s rights… when they deserve it. If he hadn’t done some unforgiveable things to the children, I would have more faith and trust in him. Until he can prove otherwise, though, this is how it will be.

I don’t know why my ex didn’t show up though. He knew about the trial that day. He’d been served a notice that he had to sign for which said what we were going to court about – custody, child support, and everything. He hasn’t tried to contact me or even replied to any of the times I’ve tried to contact him via phone or other modes of communication. And that is part of why I wanted full custody: because I think he’s just dropping out of my children’s lives completely. To make a point: we actually had to search to find his address as he’d moved without giving the courts, or myself (which, legally he should have done), any sort of notification. It only took a couple of days since there were multiple people searching, but the fact of the matter is that we actually had to search for it!

I don’t know, and I’m not sure if I care or not. I do know that despite my anxiety I do believe that I would have felt better if he had come because I believe in a fair trial and without him there to defend himself, then… gah, I don’t know. I guess I just feel that it was a bit unfair, even though I got everything I wanted. Is that weird?

Matters of the Heart

I need to write this. I need to get this out of my system before I explode.

First off, I’m over my ex-husband. I’m over him so thoroughly it’s crazy. That’s not what I’m concerned about. I’m concerned that one day I’m going to look at one of my children, particularly my oldest child who has my ex-husband’s eyes to a T, and hate them. Loathe them. Wish they were never born. I don’t want that now and just the thought of it possibly happening makes me sick to my stomach and want to cry.

But I know of people that it’s happened to. And it worries me to death. I think it’s a large part of what stresses me out and keeps me up at night.

I love my children. My oldest is in preschool and learning more and more everyday. All of them are so smart, wonderful, adorable, loveable… and while I may be horribly biased, I’m not the only one who thinks so. Especially the loveable part, though. All of them will just go up to someone and give them a hug, say “hi” and smile that heartwarming smile that they have.

I don’t understand how I could possibly come to abhor any of my children, but like I said… I know of other mothers who’ve began to dislike their children after a certain amount of time.

My own mother did it. I don’t want to take after her. I’m afraid that I will. I think that’s what scares me the most: becoming like my mother.

But it’s mind over matter, right? All a power of will?

Guess I need to work on my strength of the mind, heart, and soul. Or something like that.

Anticipation, Anxiety, & Grrrr

I’m tired; I’m out of energy; I’m nauseous and my breasts are sore. If I’m not pregnant, I want to know what the f*ck is wrong with my body because I never PMS (PreMenstrual Syndrome) symptoms like these. The most I have is a slightly sore lower back the day before I start my period and I don’t even HAVE that. So seriously… WTF?!

I’m not saying I am preggers. I’m not saying I am. The body can seriously play mind games and no matter how well I may know my body and even though I’ve been pregnant twice, it doesn’t matter. One, it’s been three years since my last pregnancy so being pregnant is a mere memory to me; I don’t remember every detail… obviously. Two, well, it’s been three years. My body’s changed since then, therefore symptoms and everything are bound to change. And I’m with a different man. I’ve heard that has something to do with it, but I’m honestly not sure.

That and I really just don’t want to get my hopes up in case I’m not preggers. Getting my hopes up and not being preggers REALLY sucks ass. I hate it. I’ve done that and it hurt. I didn’t like it, so I just try to stay neutral as much as possible. It’s hard, but I just… I just try. I try to remain, I don’t know, scientific, about it? I try to think of it logically? It’s hard to really say. Just that I try to not get emotionally attached to something that I don’t know is real or not. :-/

Le sigh.

Ain’t that the truth?

Note to self: continuing nausea and fatigue does NOT automatically mean I’m pregnant no matter how much I wish it so. Patience, young grasshopper, is the key.

Work, Write, Love

There are so many things wrong right now. It’s ridiculous. I’m thinking too much and everything is driving me crazy. I think I’m getting slightly depressed because I’m stuck inside all the time recently because of the weather, with all of this cold and snow that’s been coming through everywhere here in the eastern United States. I guess it doesn’t make anything better when my fiance is working overtime because one of his co-workers is so badly injured that he isn’t able to work for the next two (2) months, so him and his other co-workers are putting in an exponential amount of extra hours to cover for him. This week, alone, he’s worked over sixty (60) hours. While, yes, the paycheck’s going to be lovely and both of us are looking forward to it… I miss him. I miss him a lot and I don’t get to spend enough time with him. We used to spend more time with each other. Hell, when my aunt was living with us we saw more of each other then, than we do now and we had severe privacy issues back then!

But all of this is just me ranting and raving. I need to get it out of my system. I have nobody – absolutely no one – to talk to about all of this.

I don’t have any close friends. I don’t really trust my family with personal information any more. It’s come to the point that the therapist who stops by bi-weekly to help with my child in his development (he’s a little behind, y’see) is easier to talk to than anybody else… except, of course, my fiance. But then it comes down to the fact that he’s never here and when he is, he seems to be sleeping because he’s so worn out from working. We never talk anymore. We never spend time with each other. We don’t even have money for a single Valentine’s Day dinner, I’ve come to find out.

I’m trying to figure out his schedule so that maybe I can arrange my mother and stepfather to babysit the children for a night or two so that my fiance and I can just have a night to ourselves and we can just, I don’t know, go out. Spend time with each other. See a movie. Have dinner. Go to a bar. Just have fun with each other. It’s not a big deal. The whole point, nonetheless, being is that we just need to spend time with each other. Without the children. Every couple does.

I feel like I’m losing him. And maybe it’s just me. I know I get paranoid sometimes and I definitely know that I have a tendency to overthink things, but it seems like my fiance and I have been growing distant from each other as of late and I don’t like it. Not one bit.

I know he loves me though. I need to stop being paranoid. The signs are there that he loves me. I’m letting too many things build up inside of me. Little things. Reminders from my past; things that people have said to me that are starting to get to me. It’s unfair and I don’t like it. I know what he’s really like. But again, that’s the problem. The little things that are wiggling their way into my mind are making me doubt stuff like that and, in my mind, if I really love my fiance I shouldn’t ever doubt him. I know that nobody is perfect; I know that no relationship is perfect, but I can’t help but continually wonder if something’s going wrong or if… just if.

I’ve wandered into “what if” categories. I really don’t think that’s a good sign.

A good sign, though, I think, is that he is the one person (not including my children) that I can’t picture myself without. I think and think and think, and then it occurs to me that we already act like we’re married. We share bills, rent, a home, chores, cooking (though, I will admit he does the majority when he’s not working); we share decisions and we compromise. We actually talk about where we’re heading in the future – where we want to go, in the sense of “when we finally get a house of our own and not this place, we’ll…” or “when we’re more financially stable we’ll take a trip to *example place* with the kids… they’d love it”. It makes my heart just grow and burst with such warmth. I feel like squealing and crying from happiness sometimes.

And, y’know, I guess it’s also probably a really good sign that when I’m reading my romance novels or watching my romantic-comedies (*cough* chick-flicks), or any sort of movie or book that has a significant amount of romance in it, I picture the leading female as myself and the leading male as my fiance. Especially once they start dating; especially if it’s starting to get more romantic. The thing is, though, it doesn’t have to be the “more romantic” parts. I have a wild imagination, and if I can picture my fiance and I doing something similar – then we’re in whatever book or movie I’m watching or reading at the time.

I love him and I’m in love with him. I’m not convincing myself of this. I’ve known it for about a year and a half now. My feelings have not faded; they’ve only grown stronger. I guess, though, I didn’t anticipate all of the other emotions – the stress, anxiety – that would come with it.

But he makes me feel beautiful. He makes me feel whole. He makes me feel complete. With him, I am me and no one else. I don’t have to be. He feel in love with me at my worst and has helped me pick up the pieces. I truly believe he loves me for who I am. It’s just hard to believe sometimes. It’s a scary thought… to have found somebody so completely right for me that they’re willing to accept all of my fuck-ups & help me through my rough patches. It’s hard to comprehend to have found somebody who loves me even if my family is so against the relationship, or just completely horrible in their own right but he still loves me because, well, because my family does not define me. My family is not who I am. Just because I am related to them by blood does not always mean they are my family.

And he accepts me. And he loves me. And he loves my children.

That’s all that matters.

Fuck the world. We don’t need anyone else. Nobody else’s opinion matters.

Just ours.