Posts tagged ‘abuse’

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.

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.

July 31, 2009

in the absence of love

this post will be mostly rambling.  i wont pay much attention to punctuation.

i read a blog post this morning about feeling ugly.  about using your body and sexuality to satisfy the longing to feel love.  to feel pretty. to feel wanted.  i post a lot of poetry, some of which allows the reader a glimpse of me.  i hadnt intended to write anything too deep and revealing about myself.  but you know when you feel that tug, that urge to purge.  more for your sake than for the entertainment of the eyes that will take the time to read the delicate details of your life.  well anyway, it got me to thinking about my childhood.  or should i say the lack of my childhood.  i remember as a little girl wanting attention from my father so badly. and never getting it.  my mother was more present in my life than he was.  but even her presence was a distant one.  like she wasnt nurturing really. nor was my grandmother.  but they were there nonetheless.  my grandmother “cared” for me.  She lived with us until i was about 9yrs old.  she walked me to school.  and she picked me up most afternoons.  on the days when she didnt i would come home and there would be devil dogs (or some chocolaty equivalent) and milk waiting for me.  i would inhale them while watching duck tales.  the intro to that cartoon still makes me sad.  i would do my homework and eventually fall asleep.  i would wake to the jingle of Three’s Company and a piping hot plate of mashed potatoes, puerto rican style pork chops (the best) and some kind of vegetable being placed on a tray in front of me.  i can almost smell the pork chops when i hear the intro to Three’s Company even today.  we didnt eat dinner as a family.  my father was usually working, or pretending to work.  my mom wasnt home from work yet.  and honestly i dont recall her.  she suffered from depression and my memories of her at that time are vague.  she didnt play with me.  she didnt tickle me or read me stories.   i didnt realize those were the things i was longing for.  but i felt the void.  and even though my grandmother wasnt emotional with me, i felt her love in the things that she did with me and for me.  my relationship with father was weird.  he was a drug addict and alcoholic and abused my mother viciously. but i loved him so much.  i saw his heart during his sober moments. and i knew that he was hurting.  he never came to my performances. he didnt come to my elementary school graduation. i was salutatorian and had to make a speech.  and received a personalized trophy.  it was my first ever since i was never enrolled in any kind of sport or dance class.  i remember looking for him in the audience. wishing the ceremony would stall a bit to give him time to come rushing through the doors.  i imagined him making eye contact with me and smiling a proud smile.  i remember going home after the ceremony and finding him passed out drunk on the sofa.  when he did finally wake up.  he beat my mother for making him miss my graduation.  while other kids were at diners with their families celebrating, i was watching my mother being dragged from one room to another.  my grandmother pleading with him to stop. her hands motioning to her chest.  when the chaos was over.  the quietness was deafening.  each party retreating to a corner. i never felt so alone.  i remember going outside that day and sitting on a bench in my graduation dress wishing someone would come after me to console me.  but they never did.  console me.  have you ever run away from someone hoping they would run after you?  i was an only child. and my desire for attention and love was so intense.  more than anything i wanted to be daddy’s girl.

rewinding a bit.

when i was 6yrs old, my mother cut off all my hair.  she didnt know how to manage my kinky curls.  in hindsight i dont think it was so much that she didnt know how or couldnt, i think she just couldnt be bothered.  this may not seem like such a big thing, but it was to me.  i had this mini afro thing going on until the age 11.  those 5yrs were painful.  i was skinny and awkward looking with an afro.  this was the 80’s.  my best friend had long hair, she would braid it and do all kinds of cute things to her hair.  i felt so ugly and was often mistaken for a boy.  did i mention i had HORRIBLE acne?  putting an image together in your head?  yes i was fugly.  i hated to walk by groups of people.  i could feel them staring at my face, even when they werent.  i would choose a seat on the bus based on what side of my face was less pimply.  there was this grocery store around the corner from my building. it was a major hang out.  almost like a community center.  men holding drinks in brown paper bags.  my dad was always one of them.  little kids running in and out with ten cent ices and quarter waters.  women chatting about this and that.  i walked in one day and the woman who owned it was standing there with the woman who would cut my hair.  i am not sure how my pimples became a topic.  but they did.  i hated that.  at least you have a pretty face.  thats what they said to me.  you’re not an ugly girl, imagine if you were ugly and had acne.  i felt the tears forming, gave them a fake but kind smile, and ran out of the store.  i learned the art of fake smiling very early on in life.  i had to do it every time someone would ask me, how are you doing?  i would smile and say fine.  when really everything was a mess.

ok so i am 12yrs old and my hair is growing out.  another awkward stage but i tried to work it as best i could.  my breast began to grow. my hips widened.  and my flat ass became a plump bulge in the back.  and just like that.  ATTENTION.

mmmm damn mami.

i like that ass.

hey chula.

can i have some of that.

hey sexy.

psst psst.

hey mami, lemme get cha number.

dame chocha.

mira mami, venir aquí.

it felt so good.  i was aware of my sexuality and the effect it had on men.  i loved the attention.  it made me feel good to be noticed. to be wanted. to feel desired.  i would dress to accentuate my lady lumps.  my breast were perky. my skin was smooth.  my legs were long.   my friends were already having sex.  i was still a virgin.  i had learned how to masturbate.  it was actually an accident that happened while taking a bath.  but i knew that i liked it and did it often.  i remember the things i would fantasize about while masturbating.  they were odd for a child of my age.  being restrained. gagged even.  but i didnt have the urge to have sex.

i eventually did have sex that year.  I didnt like it.  it didnt feel good to me. but i loved the power in my pussy.  i remember standing in front of a mirror.  my youthful body tanned from a day at the beach.  the neon colors of my bathing suit popping in contrast to my bronzed skin. i loved what i saw.  after years of hating the way i looked.  the feeling of being able to look in the mirror and be in love with my reflection was intoxicating.

the male attention. a poor substitute for the love i craved from my father.  it filled the void only for a moment.  the space he left in my heart is unfillable.

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.