Archive for ‘Domestic Violence’

February 16, 2010

Dear Daughter…

I’m sorry this has taken so long.  My heart aches as I think of all of the things I did to hurt you.  I am so sorry I chose a soul numbing substance over you…over our family.   Sorry I hurt your mother.  Sorry I robbed you of your innocence, and allowed you to witness things a child’s eyes should never see.  Sorry I stole your youth and forced you into adulthood way before your time.  I am so sorry my demons became yours.  I’m sorry I put others before you.  I am sorry I was too high and drunk to realize how badly you wanted my love and affection.  Sorry I pushed you into the arms of men searching for a fathers love.  I am sorry. I am so sorry I couldn’t guide you and teach you… love you and father you… nurture you and make you feel secure.  I am so very sorry. I’m sorry I left you feeling lost and broken… I am sorry that you are still hurting…that you still long for my love…I’m loving you from heaven… and I’m proud of how you’ve overcome… I see your struggle and your pain and I am sorry I am not there with you.  I’m sorry for all the years you suffered in a violent relationship because you didn’t know any different.  I am sorry for the wrong paths you chose because I wasn’t there to advise you.   I know my death was senseless and preventable… I am sorry I didn’t hear your cries…your pleading…and begging… for me to stop…for me to choose life…to choose you.  I’m so sorry I didn’t choose you.  I’m sorry that you won’t ever receive this letter…or get the closure that you want so badly.  I am sorry that I never said I was sorry.  My dearest sweet daughter…I loved you dearly…and I am so very sorry.

September 4, 2009

i didnt forget you daddy.

his day was a week ago.  i tried to let it pass quietly.  but i have been feeling the tug.  the need to write about him.  i want him to know that i still remember him.  that his loss will forever be felt.  we lose people, we mourn them, but over time, it gets easier.  we think of them a little less as the years go by.  its only natural. life goes on.

its been seventeen years, and it hasn’t gotten easier.  at times it seems as if it has become more painful.  every time i see a father reading to his little girl.  or a daughter and father walking hand in hand.  a teary eyed dad walking his baby down the isle. it breaks me.

i was watching intervention and saw a family destroyed by alcoholism.  i saw a man near death.  i saw him get the help he needed.  i saw a family united and witnessed a happy ending.

im so jealous of that.  i wanted that so badly.

they say you have to let them hit rock bottom.  apparently for my father, that bottom was pretty low.  and on the way there… death caught up with him.  his painful journey to that final day was difficult to witness.  even as a child i remember wanting to help him.  wanting to assume the parent role and show him that we could be happy, as a family.  i can still see the glazed look in his eyes… seemed as if he were looking right through me.

i miss him.

i’ve had more years without him, than i had with him.

i dont go to his grave often.  i think in the seventeen years he’s been gone, i have been there maybe three times.  i think maybe i will go there and lay a blanket on his grave and just be with him.  although i know thats not him anymore.   its tangible.

Daddy, I wish you hadn’t left me so soon.  I wish I could have seen your heart healed.  I wish my children knew your laugh.  You would have been an awesome grandfather. My heart still feels heavy.  I still feel the pain I felt on that day.  I won’t ever forget how carelessly it was told to me.  I wish I could wake up, and this would all be a dream.  Though I know I would just be waking up to the nightmare that was your life.  I hated that we left you in that apartment alone, but you left us little choice.  I remember when you tried to get better.  You came to church with us every Sunday and you walked around with a Bible, preaching to your friends.  You were better for a short while.  But the pain and reality of having lost your family.  Having to reside in that house  that was once filled with my voice and moms voice.  The scent of home cooking filling it.  The TV blaring my favorite shows.  My best friend… and she still is Dad, 28yrs now… she’d be there acting a fool…the dog barking… I know the quietness was torturous.  You relapsed for the last time.  And you died alone… and I hate that.  I hate that I didn’t see you one last time.  I hate that you died thinking that I didn’t love you… and that you had failed me.  I hate it.  I am so sorry for not coming to see you that last weekend.  That decision still haunts me.  I forgive you for everything.  I don’t want time to steal you from me.  I don’t want my memories to be come vague.  They are all I have left. Our good times were good.  We were robbed Daddy, you and I.  We weren’t done.  Not anywhere near it.  A part of me didn’t grow anymore after you left me.  The little girl that still needed her Daddy is snuggled close to you in that grave…she died with you.

August 7, 2009

love.

this is going to be a bumpy ride.

an “are we there yet” kind of experience.

my thoughts are here, there and everywhere.

LOVE.

man has found a way to put a label on everything.

has created words to describe the indescribable.

LOVE even has a definition in the dictionary as if it can really be defined.

LOVE…

  1. A deep, tender, ineffable feeling of affection and solicitude toward a person, such as that arising from kinship, recognition of attractive qualities, or a sense of underlying oneness.
  2. A feeling of intense desire and attraction toward a person with whom one is disposed to make a pair; the emotion of sex and romance.
    1. Sexual passion.
    2. Sexual intercourse.
    3. A love affair.
  3. An intense emotional attachment, as for a pet or treasured object.
  4. A person who is the object of deep or intense affection or attraction; beloved. Often used as a term of endearment.
  5. An expression of one’s affection: Send him my love.
    1. A strong predilection or enthusiasm: a love of language.
    2. The object of such an enthusiasm: The outdoors is her greatest love.
  6. Love Mythology. Eros or Cupid.
  7. often Love Christianity. Charity.
  8. Sports. A zero score in tennis.

REALLY?

man has even written a book.  called it the bible. and deemed it the right way to live.  the right way to love. the only way to truly know God.  and adherence to the rules within this man-made book is the only way to enter the pearly gates of heaven…as if there are iron workers in heaven.

each time i have loved. my definition of love has evolved.  each time i said I LOVE YOU. i meant it. i meant with all my heart knew of love, at that time.

i remember being five years old or so, and standing before my mother as she knelt down to fiddle with my scarf. she wrapped it in a way only a mother can. air tight. i knew that was love.  i remember asking her… “mommy, why do you let daddy hit you?” i knew that wasnt love.

funny though, i knew that wasnt love, but it was all i knew. and i would know it first hand.

before i knew i was gay.

before i knew what love really was.

before i had any business loving anybody.

when all i wanted was attention.

i loved him.

and he loved me too.

he told me so.

he said, “i love you so much.  I will break both your legs if you ever leave me.”

he said, “i love you so much.  I will kill you if you ever cheat on me.”

crazy, but it felt like love to me.  i thought wow… he REALLY loves me!

i was only twelve years old. and it was the only concept of love i had ever known.

he went to jail shortly after confessing his love to me.

when he came home from prison.  he found out something that i had done (another post).  he called me upstairs. he lived in the apartment above mine.  i ran up.  he greeted me by the door.  i dont recall him saying anything.  he slapped me hard across the face. it stung.  i was paralyzed. in complete disbelief. BAM….again, and again, and again.  i felt the warm stream of fear trickling down my legs.  he was yelling at me. but i cant tell you what he said.  i havent a clue.  when he dismissed me, i ran down the stairs. into my apartment. to my bed. and cried. he called me later that night to say he was sorry. i was happy to hear from him.

fast forward.

summer of 1993. i was fifteen. our one month old daughter was sleeping in the crib. it was about 4am.  we were watching a movie. i was eating   chef boyardee ravioli. he started questioning me about the same incident that happened back in 1991. a knot formed in the pit of my stomach.  and just as i had anticipated.  the ravioli went flying. my eyes became wide as i looked at the intensity in his.  he had this evil look about him when he became enraged.  he asked me questions, and ended each question with a powerful slap to my face. each one harder than the last. or maybe my skin just became more sensitive with each blow.  i backed myself onto the sofa and hugged my knees.  he punched my legs as i buried my head into my arms. he jerked my body out of the ball i had formed myself into.  and wrapped his hands tight around my neck.  crazy how your body reacts to intense fear.  its as if your brain goes into some kind of self preservation mode.  and it can no longer waste any brain cells on things like bladder control. i felt a gush of warmth escape me. it almost felt good. his grip was terrifying.  i felt my face. the horror that was all over it.  the look on his was worse.  blank. angry. emotionless. he took me into the room and held my face over the crib.  said some taunting things about me never seeing our daughter again.  pushed me into the corner of the room. and began punching me all over. twice in the face. my legs. my stomach.  when i keeled over in pain. he punched me on my back.  the sun had come up.  my mother heard the commotion and began knocking on our locked bedroom door. he told me to tell her to go away.  each time she knocked. he slapped me in the face and told me to tell her to go away. this happened several times until she noticed the pattern.  finally she stopped.  he told me to lay down. i did. he plopped himself down next to me. i cried and sniffled as quietly as i could. i told him i had to pee.  he gestured for me to go.  i held my head in my hands as i sat on the toilet.  i flushed and turned on the water. i stared at my reflection. bruised. puffy. red. scared. i left the water on and ran. i ran out of the apartment. and kept running. i was barefoot.  with nothing on but a night shirt. no panties.  i approached a man who was standing in his doorway talking to another man.  now in a panic with tears streaming down my face i begged him to use his phone. he pulled his friend inside and slammed the door. i just kept running.  i noticed someone in their kitchen, and knocked on their door.  i told them it was an emergency, and begged them to use their phone.  the man looked around for a minute and opened the door for me to come in.  he sat me down and his pregnant wife inquired silently about the almost naked hysterical girl in her kitchen.  he handed me the phone and she rubbed my back. it hurt but her touch felt comforting.  i called the police. the husband gave me a pair of shorts to put on. i wanted to stay with them.

i arrived back at the house to find him putting our infant daughter in his car.  he drove off.  i ran after the car with every ounce of strength  i had.  i could hear the sirens not far behind me.

he was arrested.

the day was long after that. painful. i had never in my life been hit before.  oddly enough, my father NEVER struck me.  he slapped me one time when i got a little too crazy playing rough with him.  he whooped me with his belt another time after i had run away for two days.  but it was funny to me. didnt hurt. i could tell he didnt want to.

i didnt press charges. he stood away for a while.  talked about moving to north carolina. but he was back home in less than two weeks.  he made me destroy the photos of my black eyes and bruised body.  i stood nine more years. and suffered many more torturous episodes. only difference was, i think he realized, the less evidence the better. so he stuck with mostly throwing me around, fear tactics and choking.

i remember one time he was angry with me about some shit.  i was in the bathroom using a curling iron.  he snatched the cord from the socket that was above my head.  and the metal part of the plug hit me in the face.  on the soft skin right under my eye.  i flinched and instinctively shut my eyes as it struck me.  when i opened them, there was this single red stream of blood pouring down my face.  as if i was crying blood.  he sucked his teeth and walked away. he felt stupid because he hadnt intended to go that far. but was too much of an asshole to comfort me.

i just stood there staring at myself.

with all i knew. and didnt know.

i knew this wasnt love.

June 8, 2009

I will never forget

your hands tight around my neck

my eyes wide with fear

looking into yours

and seeing evil

your grip getting stronger

my head swelling

the blood vessels around my eyes

POPPING

me clawing at your hands

wanting so badly to scream

and beg

my mouth open

tiny squeaks escaping

everything is going dim

as i stare into your eyes

trying to speak to you

with my helplessness

your face stern

unaffected

by my silent pleas

for mercy

i cant breathe

i’m panicking

i’m choking

you’re killing me

everything that seemed so big

seems so small now

i’m so weak now

cant see you clearly anymore

cant fight anymore

i’m mouthing “please”

in one last effort

thinking these are the hands

of my protector

we created life together

you’re taking mine

so sad

i had to be rescued

by my  baby girl

sad

that i couldnt swallow

for one week

the bruises were visible

for two

the scars are forever though

i can forgive

i have forgiven

but i will never forget.