This is a long read, but I hope all of you who choose to read it... find the Hope, the Love and search for Peace that I found, and still keep to re read at my loneliest moments..
For those of you who know me well enough to receive this -- then you can understand the power
in My daughters Memoirs
As a child I grew up having been taken from my family of origin at about the age of 2. From
there I spent some time in a foster home until about the age of 9. At the age of nine I then was
placed as a foster child with my adoptive parents. A process of adoption that took about 3 -4 years before a judge sat me down in his chambers with my parents to be and myself and asked me "Do you want to be adopted?". I answered with a yes only because I felt there was no other
answer I could give, because the people who provided me a home for the past few years were
there. Even then I felt so responsible for all the wrongs committed in that home and the why my
family of origin could not keep me. Thus was an additional "I owe", for crimes committed
against me and to me, and for abuses yet to come. Loyalty of a child is a tremedously powerful
emotion, one strong enough to change a life, save a life and yes to become a core of life.
Most of you know also that during those years of my maturing I was sexually abused by so many
different men -- the last count was over one hundred. Their names are kept in a book, to date I
have been unable to re read the list for over ten years. With sexual abuse comes emotional abuse,
physical abuse added with alcoholism. My own bouts of various forms of abuses of drugs and
alcohol come with this.
When I was a girl of about 15 I found an author who sang my words across her pages of her
book. "I know Why the Caged Bird Sings" Maya Angelou. This book tells the story of her own
childhood sexual abuse, and further books express her maturing living with the effects of such
trauma. I questioned for the first time in my life then, exactly WHO was responsible for pain I
could not express.
During the 1980's I married a man / child who later disclosed his own childhood sexual abuse. I
had spent 3 years or so divorcing an active alcoholic. A very distinct choice because there was no way in hell I was going to raise my daughters around an active alcoholic. Through the grace of God he is a sober man now. I entered psychotherapy early in the years of my marriage to my second spouse. During these therapy sessions, the silence of my sexual abuse was broken. To date I have spent more time being active in psychotherapy than not.
Though She has written the following about her memoirs regarding love. For me I take this and
share it as a tribute to the reality that not only can breaking the silence and cycle of abuse be painful, but that it can be rewarding in the most unplanned ways.
She writes of Love, she has as well as her sister always known about the sexual abuse I and her
father have survived. While she did not knowingly write her memoirs about the abuse, the
correlation and testimony given by her validated me when I was very small self proclamation; "I
will NEVER do to my children what these people have done to me".
Some of you know of the time I attempted to commit suicide by hooking the hose to the tailpipe
of the car. What stopped me from completing that act was not being able to decide if I should
take my children with me or not. I chose not because if I had then I would have committed the
worst of sins, and if I left them to themselves no one could keep them as safe as me. I called a
suicide prevention hotline instead.
And this my friends is the reality of choice to continue living. I am thankful that I made a choice to work so hard to not repeat the abuses delivered upon me. My pain so that my children really could be the Beginning of Life. And yes its true "They were and are the beginning of a new life for me".
May God Bless us All with the ability to know the unconditional love of a child for only the
purest of reasons. ~ With Love, Wifey1 please do not forward or share this as these are very
personal words for her & myself. She has only given me permission to share them with a few of
you. Keep these words close to your hearts and draw from them as I have.
Memoirs - Dec 2002
Iíve heard many people say that love is an illusion. That it doesnt really exist. I have been lucky enough to be loved and love someone. All of my life I have had someone to love me. I have been privileged to be loved unconditionally. Now, there are several types of love. Love between
parents and children, friends and lovers. There is love between unknowns; a person can love
someone who is unknown to them, just through the emotion of compassion. I have been lucky
enough to have been loved in all these ways.
Love, when you are a child, mainly consists of the love of parents for their children. Maya
Angelou, at the birth of her child was worried about how she was going to raise her son; if she
was going to do the right thing by him. Mother whispered, "See, you donít have to think about
doing the right thing. If youíre for the right thing, then you do it without thinking (Angelou 289).
The right thing came naturally to Angelou. Perhaps because she was a parent loving her child.
Sometimes the most pure form of love is from a parent to a child. Dorothy Allisonís sister was
giving up when she birthed her child. Her life was about to end, but not in the way that death
normally comes. It was coming in the form of every aspect of life as she knew it was about to
Thatís when your mama saved her own life--by choosing it, by claiming it, alone and scared
as she was. By pulling you into the world and loving you with her whole heart. (Allison 85)
Children are a beginning and parental love is a phenomenon to me. I have never understood how
someone could love someone else so much that they would willingly give up their lives for a
person. Perhaps because I am not a parent myself, I donít understand. For as long as I can
remember, my mom has always said that she would die or kill for my sister or I. Children are
new beginnings. They can save a life or ruin a life. Mostly, I have seen the birth of a child save
the life of itís mother.
Iíve seen my friends look at pregnancy as a curse. They see the coming child as an albatross
around their neck. Only after the birth of the child did my friends realize that the baby was a
chance to right a couple wrongs in their lives. They were able to see the baby for more than just a baby. They were able to see the future of their own life.
Love also comes from strangers for little children. Who doesnít like to smile or play with babies or kids? "Oh, arenít you cute? My big blue eyes looked up at the strange woman from behind my
momís legs. This strange lady got down on my level to talk to me. Sheís talking baby talk to me.
NO! I am too old for baby talk. Iím four years old. I can understand what big people say. Sheís
touching my hair. I donít mind because my mom is talking to this lady and has one hand on my
head and the other is touching my sister. "You are so lucky to have such cute children . My mom
says "Thank you; they are everything Iíve ever wanted . My little sister looks up at this lady and smiles up behind her great big glasses. "Bye sweeties . The lady left us with a quick touch to my sisters and mine's cheeks.
This moment has always stuck out in my mind because of the thing my mother said. My mom
loves me. Even now her apartment is a shrine to my sister and I. Pictures of us, our artwork,
anything we made for her is in her apartment.
Love, for my mom, consisted of devoting her entire life to raising my sister and I. I can always remember times when my mother gave something up so my sister and I could have something.
Even now, my mom will give my sister or I money even if it means being late on her next rent
My entire image or thoughts of love have been based on my parentís actions towards each other
and my sister and I. I remember a time when my parents left for the weekend. It wasnít until later that I realized what sacrifices went on for that weekend. For months my mother knew her
husband had been hiding something from her. My dad had been taking money for lunch. We
knew that. Heíd take three or four or five dollars for lunch every day he went to work. My dad would come home from work hungry every day. What was happening to his lunch money? My
dad had been saving it in his toolbox for several months. By the time this weekend came about,
my dad had saved a couple hundred dollars. He surprised my mother with a weekend away
without the kids, away from stress, to be with him.
My dad sacrificed eating lunch for several months so he could surprise my mother with a
weekend away from everything. My dad has given up plenty for love. Like him giving up lunch
for my mom, heís done the same thing for my sister and I. My dad had seven dollars for lunch
and my sister and I needed gas money. I never thought I would get the gas money from my dad.
I remember asking for a car when I turned 16. Freedom from my parents meant everything to me.
I hated them when they told me I would have to pay for it myself. My parents had this beat-up
piece of junk car that they gave me, but I would have to pay for gas, maintenance, and insurance.
I hated that stipulation. I felt they should have given it to me, especially since other parents were giving their children cars in their 16th birthdays. I felt they should have given me the car, as well as all the benefits that came with it. I threw fits about having to get a job to pay for the car. It bothered me so much that my parents and I fought constantly about it. Of course, my parents won the argument and I had to get a job. Looking back, I am grateful to my parents for making me take the responsibility for my car and making me accept that everything had a price that went with it.
My sister and I needed gas money, and although my dad was lecturing us, he took out his wallet
to hand us his last seven dollars so that we could get gas.
My dad, through little acts like these, shows his love for my mom, sister and I. The love shown
by my dad showed me that some love is sacrificing. The love they have shown me, between
themselves and to me, set an example of what I do and want in my own relationships.
Due to the example my parents set for me with their own love, I never thought I could find what
they had. Even if I did find it, I never thought I could have it, so I tried to keep myself from being open to the wounds of love. "... and to love I thought myself immune (Allison 55). I thought I was immune to the love between lovers, until I met XXX.
The best way I can show love between lovers is by using my boyfriend XXX and I as an example. We have always had a close relationship. Our relationship started out very interesting
as opposed to most relationships.
"XXX, come down to my room. I got a phone call at 10 pm from my friend XXXX. We lived in
the dorms, so a quick 30-second walk to her room was no problem. When I got down there, she
was chatting online with a friend of ours who had moved off campus earlier that year. XXXX let
me read through their conversation. The gist of which was that XXXI and her fiancee XX had a
friend who XX wanted to set up on a date. XXXXX was wondering if I would be willing to talk
to his guy. Well, OK. I agreed to talk to this guy on the phone for a while. Then, and only then,
would he and I decide if we wanted to go on a date or not. To shorten this story, we liked each
other but the day after our first date, XXXís dad was killed in an accident. I supported him,
mentally, the best I could.
It wasnít until recently that XXX and I were talking and we got to talking about just after we
started dating. XXX told me that after his dad died, he actually thought about not seeing me
again. He said that our relationship was still new enough that he didnít know if we could make it
through the hard period in his life. I was puzzled why he did continue to see me, and I asked him that. He told me that it was because he might need someone to escape with, to leave his life behind with.
I was hurt. Looking back, I shouldnít have been, but I was. I felt like I had been used. That XXX
used me for his own means. Hindsight is always 20/20. I donít know who said that, but itís true.
Now I know that even if I was being used, that it is what XXX needed at the time. With the help
of 20/20 hindsight, I know that I was showing love to him or for him even though I didnít love
him at the time. I unknowingly sacrificed my security in our relationship for XXXís sake. I know that now and Iím glad.
Despite XXX and mineís beginning of sacrifice, it has turned into a relationship based not on
love, but on each other. We let ourselves lean on each other and to care for each other. In
sickness and in health... isnít that the way the phrase in the wedding vows go? Even though XXX
and I arenít married, nor are we planning it anytime in the future, I see our relationship as a
beginning to a marriage.
I started the night leaning over the toilet bowl. When the sun rose the next day, I was still there.
Despite being miserable and trying to keep my stomach from doing flip-flops, I went over to
XXXís to spend time with him like I had promised. He saw I was miserable and cuddled with
me, knowing that is what I wanted. This was a bad thing in the long run. XXX ended up with the
same stomach flu I had ended up with. Despite knowing that whatever I had was contagious,
XXX spent time with me, risking his own health in the process. This next time was my turn to
take care of him. I cuddled him and returned all the same treatment he had given to me. We took
care of each other even though it was a risk to our own health.
I know there are all kinds of love and that love requires growth. Love matures as minds mature.
If you are a child in your mind, you will love as a child does. The same goes for adults. Linda
Hogan had the right idea when she said that love grows as time passes and that it requires
Until then, what I thought of as love was as immature and unwise as I was. I know now that it
is like time; it grows as time passes. It doesnít always make for betterment. It always requires
growth. (Hogan 76)
Love will grow in all forms. All of my relationships in my life, the love has grown as I have grown. Whether or not the growth is reciprocated depends on the other person. The only way love will last is if both parties grow and the love grows with them. My mom and dad are the perfect example of love growing through all problems. For the past two years my parents have
been having marriage problems. Even though they say they still love each other, their love was
growing through all of these problems. It was strong to begin with, but it was growing stronger
with all of the problems that they were working out.
Love grows as a person matures. Every kind of love grows. The love in my life as grown
immeasurably as I have matured. I can hardly wait to see how much more my life and the love in
my life will grow as I grow and mature.