Borderline personality disorder and other mental health issue

LETTER TO MY CHILDREN: A letter of sorrow, love, and hope for the future

 

I was a horrible mother! An intervention was given to me as a Thanksgiving present and this is what happened.  Little steps to better healing through family and communication

I am your mother. I carried each of you in my womb for nine months, went through excruciating pain called labor and delivered each of you into this world naturally. The moment I laid eyes on you I fell in love. I didn’t know how to be a mother. You didn’t come with instructions or a manual of what to do in 12 easy steps. I knew that I wanted to be a good mother but I didn’t know how.  I was not provided that example when I grew up. I don’t believe that was my mom’s fault. She didn’t get those tools handed down to her.

Her parents were alcoholics. She grew up poor. She dropped out of school with a 9th grade education. She married at 15 years of age to a man nine years older than her. Her parents allowed her to. He took her across the country to California. I assume he cheated on her and abused her. She gave birth to my oldest brother and soon moved back  to Cleveland. Her husband had committed a crime and when she gave birth had to provide a false last name for my brother which was eventually changed. Over the years my Mom went through several abusive relationships which yielded three more children.

I share this with you so you might understand some of what has happened over the years. I am to blame for all my mistakes and the hurtful actions that have occurred. I place no blame on anyone else although you may think so. I am proud of the women you have all become. Overcoming obstacles and having great class and respect for your selves. Do not let those qualities ever be taken away from you and pass them down to your children.  I spent years blaming. See, blaming is a part of the disease. They were always against me and that was why I never was able to be successful.  I blamed you for not being good for the reason why I used drugs daily. I used drugs because I have  a disease called addiction. I needed self-pity and an excuse to make it okay. It was never okay to call you names, blame you for my deficiency and I never hated you. I hated me. It was always me. I too, thought the way you did.

This is how I was raised so it must be okay. It wasn’t and never will be okay to do those things to a child like I had done to me and I had done to you

Being beaten,degraded, humiliated and sexually abused daily for eleven years by your father I felt that I truly deserved all that happened to me. I was told I deserved it, that I brought it upon myself. I was a worthless cunt and no man wanted me. I couldn’t figure out why he did then. You know the he in this.  I began to let myself go downhill. I stopped bathing, brushing my teeth, putting clean clothes on, and even brushing my hair. I picked sores on my face, my arms, my legs ,even my breasts to keep him from wanting to touch me but none of it worked. He made my skin crawl and  vomit when I was forced to have sex with him. Just for that sleaze to be a dad to you all. He lived off my hard work. I made sure there was Christmas and birthday presents, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Easter baskets and  visits from the Tooth Fairy. I paid the bills, provided the food, bought school clothes. I did all the work because I loved you. I knew to provide for your needs. I didn’t know how to show affection and love. I felt undeserving of being loved by anyone, including you.  I was told so many times how worthless I was that I was never good enough and that no one ever wanted me. I believed it after so long. NO one would ever love me.

I never knew what love was. I knew what love wasn’t. I would not know love until I could begin to love myself. That took time. It took until I was 50 years of age to begin to know who I was and why I was these ways. Diagnosed properly for the very first time. BORDRLINE PERSONALITY DISORDER,PTSD, SOCIAL ANXIETY DISORDER AND DEPRESSION. I knew more was wrong with me. I wasn’t bi-polar. I knew that there was some answer out there if I kept searching and seeking help. Unfortunately, I will never be cured of alcoholism and addiction and that I always stand that chance of  relapse and overdose. It took a few more years of intense introspection of myself to begin to see what made me the monster I was and who was responsible for the harm done growing up. It took me until I was 52 years of age to say ENOUGH!!  I refuse to let anyone take control over my life again and live to what their expectations are.  I cut ties with many people even my MOM due to the healing process that was and is still ahead of me. I needed to get strong inside to stand up for myself and speak out against the injustices done towards me.Because I love you I want to begin to heal together. I owe no one any type of explanation for my actions that I needed to take to begin to save my life.

I still struggle daily. This isn’t easy for me. I cry a lot for the things I did to you. I was told the 2nd time I lost you that I needed to search my soul to see if I was the best thing for my children.  I didn’t know if I was going to be sober forever and rather than put you through another relapse and displacement I felt you would be better off if I let you go . A social worker supervisor made me take this path under the guise that we would be allowed to see one another.  I couldn’t do that to you again. Trust had been destroyed and there was no one there to even help me . I had no one in this world who wanted anything to do with me. Men used my good  nature, and willingness to help to their advantage. I never chose some man over you. I chose a better life for you over myself. I cried every holiday I spent alone. Each of your birthdays that passed I would be so sad that I could not pick up the phone and tell you I loved you. I was lied to by the system that was supposed to help us. It didn’t do anything but make you bitter and resentful. They made you feel I didnt want you and that wasn’t the truth.  Once again due to my own actions of searching and wanting love by someone, I used again.  I found my self behind bars and looking hard at a six years prison sentence in Marysville, Women’s Prison. Thank God he gave me a chance. I put days after days together , turned them into years of sobriety. I found someone who cared for me, married him and bought a home for all of us to have a place to live if you all ever needed it.  I did what ever I could to help you. I wanted to be your mom. I was blessed to be a grandma.

Then things went bad and I began to use. The man who I loved cheated on me and that took me over the edge. I felt I had done something to deserve his infidelity. I quit my job as a counselor. I began seeking drugs daily. I needed to be able to function and not be sick for a while. I kept that a secret. Eventually it caught up with me.  I have gotten clean several times but no one believed me so I would say “Fuck it!” I might as well use since I am constantly accused of it. I would find my self having to explain and defend all the things I did and who I talked to  and why.  My marriage was over and no matter how much I  tried to make it  work,  my now ex-husband was verbally and emotionally abusive, which made me feel worse about me. I had disappointed you once again and this time stolen from you and my grand babies. Its hard to forgive yourself when you feel so worthless about yourself.

Then I met the man who I believe God intended me to be with. He began seeing the underlying anger in me and was able to open me up. In the beginning I couldn’t handle it and would go pick at my face, a habit I hadn’t done in so very long. I hate a part of me and had let it sit way down inside for so many decades.  I am less angry but not healed. Therapy helps with this and medication. .  I want to be in your lives for the remainder of my days here. I try so hard to be sober and do good. I need your support too, not your doubt in me. Today, I didn’t run away. Something inside said go talk with them. We are aggressive woman in nature and communication can be very hair-raising to say the least. We all love, fight, anger, and feel passionately about everything whether we show those feelings to the world or not.  I have always loved you. I brought you into this .I have helped raise each of your children and was there when you pushed them into this world.  I am your mom and want to be allowed to be your mom.

Be good to your children. Tell them you love them every day. Build them up, don’t tear them down by name calling or belittling. Don’t do the things I did to you. Be better than me. want better for them.  Keep them safe but let them have wings to fly and grow. Don’t let them be afraid to come to you but also don’t neglect to be there to listen and help them. Love them unconditionally.  That means that you may disprove of the actions but actions aren’t the person. Love the person unconditionally. Don’t make them feel that they are loved only when they act the way others want. Let them be themselves. Influence and support their talents and goals. Be involved in their lives and most importantly thank GOD every night for blessing you with those little arms that hold you tight and look at you as if you are their hero, with adoration in their faces and a sparkle in their eyes.  Don’t let them see you succumb to an addiction or an abuser. Learn from my mistakes. Don’t raise them like you were raised. I hope one day you will really forgive me for all the pain and hurt I have brought to you life and that we will be stronger for our faults and remain a family.   You and your children are a blessing from God who gave me such a huge legacy.

All my love,   mom

 

Mental illness and addiction issues plagued my entire family for generations. Most feel it is inherited, passed from one generation to the next. PLease seek help for family members or for your self if  feel that you have these issues. Treated together, there is to be found success in the recovery of both. Call ADAMS/MH in your local area for facilities and providers near you. The face of mental illness and addiction has changed. It is now the suburban housewife who shoots heroin and prominate social and wealthy family members suffering from mental illness. It is not a shameful illness anymore. Raise awareness and spread the word.

 

 

 

 

I AM A WRITER TODAY I WRITE OF HOPE

“Writing is the only thing that when I do it I don’t feel I should be doing something else.” Gloria Steinem

I am a writer I finally put a claim to that title just recently for I thought I had to be famous, well read and on the best seller’s list at least a dozen times , right there with Stephen King. I learned that I write every day, something is put down on paper by me and they are my words, my experiences and my thoughts. I am a writer. Think back to when you were young and what you said that you wanted to grow up and become. I have always said that I wanted to be a writer, since the age of five years old I believe it was my calling then.  As life would have its way with each individual I took paths that I chose for various reasons and somehow I lost sight of that goal for many years. I never stopped writing. I wrote in journals about my self and things that occurred and events that altered me in many ways that were not good for me.  As we venture along here I will share my stories, some sad, some happy many are tragic and there are times I know that there has been a spirit watching over me for in my life’s happy trails I should not be on this side of the dirt to even write this today. For whoever was assigned to be a guardian angel over me I want to be able to thank you and from now on make your job easy by not pushing it to the edge all the time hoping to fall off but something always catches me. I suffer from several disorders and mental challenges (illness just sounds institutional ). I work on my character defects, as some refer to them as, daily and I am making progress. I am a far way from being cured of anything and I may never be totally of sound mind and body but I have lived life and have done what I wanted to do, always, in some way it was mine, Now I want to share those tales with you as we venture into some sordid and dark places where I would never have dreamt that I would go. Coming from Miss suburban white town, USA, to the depths of hell( as one can only imagine on earth .)Yes, there really is Hell on Earth. I have been there and back. Living on advanced grace, I have been blessed to see many things that I am able to use to help others climb out of those trenches that we dig for  ourselves, putting our hands over our heads as we hunker down to not be blown to shreds by our own choices. To be in those life taking places where we may never come back from was our choice. For some that would be just fine.  I invite you in to my world as I lived it up to today. Tomorrow may not come for me but if it does I will be here to share. I hope that my words reach deep inside your soul and the pain you feel I know all to well.  KnowIng you are not alone and that together we will walk free from bondage of self. Those self- defeating things that we have used to self- destruct .I am a survivor and you are one too. Let’s share what we have and heal.

For those of you who are curious about the life of addiction, mental illness and personality disorders which afflict many and survivors of rape and domestic violence through childhood and beyond. If you never fit in, felt loved ,feared rejection and betrayal from those close to you this is where you can feel a part of.I understand and am here to listen and share. Feel free to comment, contact me, and share a little of your story if you want.  My goal is to help at least one person out there who is in pain and suffering to recover like I have done and am still doing so . Join me on this road and we will laugh, cry ,love and lose together with each story that is told. We heal through helping one another recover. Where we once were hopeless we have found hope with one another.

Take a few minutes  and share a bit of your story with me and let the healing begin.

 

My Personal Photography: My hobby is photography I want to share with you

I am a writer! I also enjoy several hobbies which I want to share with you my readers, and followers of my web page. Without you, there would trully be NO ME. I realize this sounds rather cliche’ but it is the truth. I enjoy sharing with you the words that are formed inside my head and put to paper ( or computer). I also enjoy sharing the photography that I have taken over the years.

I am somewhat disabled so to speak. I suffer from seizures that began when I turned 50 years old. After several severe seizures on a job sight where I was working catering three meals a day to the roadies who set up the stage for concerts, the opening acts and the main attraction ( Justin Timberlake, Lady Gaga, Jay Z, Jay Z and Beyonce and Tim McGraw) to name a few headliners that I was honored to cook for working with an established catering service in the Ohio region, I was “let-go” from employment due to the high risk of having another seizure on the job sight. Now I work from Home writing many different articles, blogs, poetry, short stories, novella’s and finally am working on my first full novel.  Living in the Dark details Borderline Personality Disorder and how a person developes this personality disorder at an early age.  It is very graphic in the nature of details that describe how this personality disorder is inflicted by those caregivers who are responsible for raising the person from birth. Traumatic events, sexual, physical emotional and verbal abuse play a significant role in the development of many personality disorders.

Diagnosis has been difficult for many who suffer with this disorder due to the fact that most psychiatrists or psychologists usually diagnose by the observable behaviors that they themselves observe which leads to pro longed suffering by the individual who is seeking help.  Many are diagnosed as having some form of Bi polar disorder and have been put on a regime of anti-depressants and anti-psychotics over the years without being helped.  It takes some people decades before receiving the proper diagnosis of Borderline Personality Disorder, however, if work hard towards recovery there is a cure.

I want to share this journey with the world to give those who are involved with someone with Borderling Personality Disorder (BPD) an understanding of what that person deals with daily and that with support and love from those close to them they can overcome this disorder and live happy lives with healthy intimate relationships with those that love them.

I have decided to put some of my photographs that I have taken of various flowers growing outdoors and from the Cleveland Metropolitan Zoo, which is a favorite place for me to go, usually with my grandchildren. I would also like to share some of my travels, and other interesting places that I was fortunate to Photograph.  If interested in any of these photographs please contact me with your request.

These first pics are of the Polar Bear at Cleveland Metro Zoo  which passed away a few years back I was saddened when heard of his demise.

The next photos are taken of the giraffe exhibit, the zebra’s, Male and female Ostriches which are all in the same exhibit at the Cleveland Metro Zoo.

living with borderline personality disorder:

Borderline Personality Disorder is not a mental illness. It is a personality disorder that is often misdiagnosed for many people who are suffering from it. Many people are diagnosed as having Bipolar or Chronic Depressive disorder. Often prescribed medications for other forms of mental illness and disorders has kept many of us suffering from these disorders for the majority of our lives. What is a day like for a person who suffers from borderline personality disorder ( BPD). I will share what it has been like living with BPD with detailed description of what a single day is like for me, how relationships are with others involved in my life and how my thinking has been distorted over the years bringing about major consequences which destroy everything I touch turning them into shit in a split second.

My day begins when I wake up which could be 8:00 a.m. or 2:00 p.m. ‘When I wake up’ means exactly that. I didn’t say when the alarm goes off or when my phone rings giving a wake up call.

I open my eyes and can’t fall back to sleep or I have to piss so bad it begins to hurt preventing me from lying in the bed any longer. I may lie there a few more minutes, pretending the pain may just subside thereby rendering me defenseless not being able to pull myself out of the comfort of the bed.

I suffer from depression which causes me to be lethargic and having to muster all the strength I have mentally and physically to pull my body up facing the new day. I don’t want to disturb my man, who is sleeping next to me, not because I want to let him sleep or to have a little time to myself. It goes much deeper than that. I don’t want to be yelled at first thing in the morning setting the tone for the remainder of the day. It is usually a fifty-fifty chance either way if he wakes or not.

I feel the warmth above my head where my little tea-cup Pomeranian has roosted on top of a pillow that rests directly above my head. I look upward into her furry face and half-open eyes , feeling the love from her that is always unconditional. I am her world which makes me feel happy. She slides her small body down off the pillow and directly onto my chest where we are now facing to face. I can’t stand to lie there any longer in pain and I gently ease her off of me and onto the other side of the bed,

I do my best to slide out of the bed without disturbing my man, grab a smoke and the lighter off the night stand next to the bed, grab the glass of ice water that is there, taking a few gulps.

” Oh my God, that is so good”, I say out loud. I felt I whispered it when suddenly I hear

SHUT THE FUCK UP. YOU GOT TO MAKE ALL THAT NOISE” He growled at me. Ripping the blanket off of him, getting out of the bed and storming off to the bathroom. I follow him apologizing as I go.

” I’m sorry I didn’t mean to wake you up I thought I was being quiet.” I say.

“You talk to yourself, slam the cup down, making unnecessary noises,” he retorts.

I continue to try to defend myself, which doesn’t fo well and since he always has to have the last word I am called a stupid bitch or cunt. This occurs within the first 20 minutes of waking. Teddy, our little dog, has taken safety under a table in the other room where she can barely be seen. My nerves are now on edge and I am walking on eggshells.

My thoughts now are like this , “I am such a fuck-up. I can’t do anything right. I am just worthless. Why is he with me? I wish I didn’t even wake up in the morning. God , why do you let me even wake up at all? I don’ t know why he bothers I know he is gonna tell me to get out . I don’t know why he is with a fuck up like me. I would be better off dead. The whole world would be better off if I was dead. I should kill myself right now. Then everyone would be happy.

My trigger was hit, well one of them and that started the moment that he began to yell at me. I don’t do well with being hollered at. Then the name calling adds to it. I also have anxiety issues and PTSD. My day has now officially begun.

I walk through the kitchen to the bathroom which is connected to it. I am in my bare feet It is January and the floor is freezing saying out loud but quietly ” OMG the floor is freezing.

“Shut the fuck up and quit talking to yourself>” he said.

Yelling back ” Im not talking to you or loud so you shut the fuck up!” Trying my best to not keep the shit going by stirring the pot more, I use the bathroom and wash my hands. Grabbing his towel to dry my hands while snickering inside because he would have a fit if he knew I had done that. In my way I got even with the yelling he did earlier.

Going into the bedroom ( it is supposed to be the living room but we turned it into our room), I grab a smoke, turn on the television , making sure the volume is turned up enough so I can hear it, sit in the recliner and have to be subjected to a few more rantings on his behalf.

I listen to the belittling comments while fighting tears from falling down my face. I think ” Why does he hate me so much, why doesn’t he just leave me if I am so awful. I wish I was dead then he could be happy and not deal with this sorry shit I am . If I let him see tears he will win , knowing I am weak and that he broke me again. Don’t do it, don’t let him see tears. He lies back in the bed , grabs a pillow throws it over his face to block light from his eyes.

I should kill him now, just smothering his ass, Hold that pillow snug as I sit on his chest till he stops breathing. Now I have changed gears in my head. I am full of anger and rage. “Fuck his ass , he aint gonna go back to sleep”, I whisper into the dog’s ear. She had come out from hiding and now was siting beside me in he chair. “I hate him. I wish He would die and leave me alone.”

I look over and see his face as he dozes back off to sleep. The pillow has slid leaving him exposed. He is lying on his back and making a soft noise with his lips as if he is blowing out a candle. He is so handsome when sleeping. My heart melts at the very second that I see him and I fall in love completely that very instant.

He is my world. I love this man so much. I want to spend the rest of my life, growing old with him. I don’t care where we are as long as we are together. Once again my mind has flipped the script so to speak. I feel all mushy inside as I think these thoughts and begin to write him another letter telling him all these thoughts and sharing those feelings I am now have for him.

I know that he is feeling the effects of withdrawal already. I haven’t begun to feel anything yet as far as withdrawal but I am hurting in my hip from my arthiritis. I know that the only way he will get out of the bed is if he has a line of heroin to get him well. I had smoked the last cigarette this morning and I knew that it was up to me to make some type of miracle happen to get some smokes. Nicotine was the worst withdrawal for me. If I don’t have a cigarette I freak out and then it gets very ugly. I grab my coat and shoes putting them on without even brushing my hair or teeth and out the door I go. I walk up to the corner where one neighbor gives me some smokes and instant coffee packs. I already owe him money which he is waiting to be paid. I ask if he has a few dollars to spare. I have to find at least enough to get the both of us well, which at this time would be a dime bag of dope between the two of us.

I have to take my chances with the dope boys and hopefully get one of the few I deal with to front me something if I cant hustle up the cash. This happens every day for a long time, my daily routine. I know that he will be coming up soon when the approval for his Social Security comes in and then I wont have to do this anymore.

I am also suffering from another disorder called substance addiction. I have been addicted to hard narcotics since I was fourteen years old, depression, anxiety and PTSD since twelve, have had numerous head injuries, the major damage done when i was ten years old with my cerebral area being damaged. Going undiagnosed for decades I self medicated for myself to feel normal. Now heroin addiction has been going on for some time due to getting hooked on pain killlers first and eventually they weren’t available and someone introduced me to heroin.

Heroin addicts do not, I repeat, do not, get high any more after they become addicted to the drug. They are physically addicted and mentally addicted. Obsessing over where to get dope, how to get the cash for the dope or hopefully get credit from your favorite dope boy so that you will not be deathly ill for three to seven days.

I eventually come up and when the dope gets to the house he gets out of bed with his hand out for me to put the package in it so he can crush it up, split it and then we begin to argue over the size of the lines not being equal. I feel like he doesn’t appreciate all the efforts I putintoo getting him well and bitch because he is greedy and takes most of the dope.

” I don’t know why I fucking bother giving you anything you don’t care about me. I should just do it without you knowing.” I say to him

Now it’s starting to get really crazy cause he has come to life. He won’t shut the fuck up and is saying so much hurtful stuff, calling me names, talking about me like I am dirt, telling me to get the fuck out of his house.. Now I am enraged, my blood boils over and I have crossed a line between suicidal and homicidal. Eventually, he antagonizes me to the point where I shove him hard.

The look on his face at that moment right before he decides to hit me is the scariest since the days of my father. He outweighs me by 80 pounds and stands at 6 feet tall. His hands cover my head from top to bottom of my chin and now he has me shoved up against the wall and is punching me in the head.

I am screaming for him to stop but he doesn’t. I protect my face the best I can. He lets me go for a minute and that’s when I try to get a good shot in or bite him if I get close enough to. This time I bite him in the chest which leaves my tooth prints there and a purple bruise lasting over a week. Now I am in for it as he snatches my hair and slams me into the wall. Not begging to stop now I am begging for him to kill me. I want to die just kill me.

In time this entire fiasco stops. He tells me he can’t live this way anymore. He cant take the fighting and arguing. He has never been one to hit women. I bring the worst in him out and he thinks we shouldn’t be together anymore.

The ultimate crushing blow is right now. He has betrayed me because he said he would always be with me and never leave or throw me out. I flip. I am crying hysterically. I threaten to kill myself Trying to get attention I eat a handful of his medications. In this attempt to kill me in front of him and he does nothing. I grab a knife to cut myself and begin to slowly slice my wrist in front of him He does nothing.

I begin to cry to God telling myself I am a stupid bitch. How could he even love me? I believed his lie and now he says I don’t want to be with you. I am once again hysterical and so lost, out of control, an abandoned, betrayed and lied to by this man who I thought loved me.

This can continue for hours or even days.When each of us has become calm enough to listen to the other I beg him to not give up on me, to not throw me away like everyone else has done. I needed him to believe in me and not leave me.

See, he knows that I have borderline personality disorder among other mental illness and disorders and that I have been working on getting better. I have come a long way since those days but have so much more to do. He also suffers from mental illness and disorders and together we are the most healthy relationship either has ever had even with all of what we go through. We both have been in relationships much worse than this One thing we do have is a love for each other and do the best we can. We have come to learn more about the other spending 24/7, 365 with each other.

BPD is curable and by hard work, therapy, and medication I can heal and renew my self and life. Facebook-20180130-091400

Shaping the Personality of me : The year of being five.

 Those who have studied Psychology of Personality know that Freud had five stages of Development and felt that the personality was fully formed at five years of age. I decided to find out by probing into the memories of my life when I was five and how the events and others incidents in my life formed my personality then and how it still

ME at the age five. The year was 1969. The hope here is to discover the truth about events that shape our lives forever or are we ever changing and evolving?  Each week I will add another memory clip from then and how it formed the person I was. Follow me as I learn some real truths If you want to add your own timeline feel free to comment and share.

affects me now. Have things changed since I have gotten older or are my personality traits still the same.  Each week I will share experiences of the fifth year and how they shaped me along with how I was raised at that age and the order of birth I am placed and see how much those traits have changed over years or have they ?  I would like to invite those readers along this journey of  my life at five. Let me hear your ideas and opinions, theory and whether you think Freud was correct. Leave a comment  open the discussion invite others

Being brought up in the household that I was raised in ( I was going to write home but then that wouldn’t have been the correct description) where there was not a concept of  any type of religion or sense of God ( unless used with a cuss word) I have struggled with the belief in any type of deity or what religion stood for.  Growing up there were things that I realize today have caused me to be who I became and the things that I did made me into who I have become.  If that doesn’t make any sense, then I pray you will be able to follow the remaining words to follow.

From a young age I never recalled being tucked into bed at night, read a book or bed-time story, being helped with homework by either parent, have my mom chaperone a field trip or volunteer for any thing for my class in grade school. I vaguely  remember school mornings when Mom would be up with us kids getting us ready for school.  I have older brothers (two) and an older sister (one) and being the youngest one would assume that I was spoiled in some sort of way which in our house wasn’t the case.  My first year of school , kindergarten I began in the morning, so I could walk to school with my siblings, the only time we all were in the same school at the same time. I would go for half a day and take the bus home which dropped me off on the far corner of my street where I had to walk home by myself from there. Not one time do I remember Mom coming to meet me at the bus stop or even look for me coming up the street.

I would be allowed to go in the back yard to play for a while when it was nice outside. My Dad had put up a swing set in the yard one day and I remember being on the swing going as high as it would go I would take my crayons outside to the back concrete patio and color for hours and then pick dandelions to give Mom.  I had a tricycle that I will always remember because I loved that bike. It was purple and had a banana seat  and the handles had the pretty purple streamers coming out the end of the handles which flew back when I went fast. I was allowed to ride it down the street by myself  but only down the street to that far corner where I would get off the bus at and walk home by myself.  I would stop at one of the neighbor’s house, he worked on the rail road with Dad . I would ride my bike down the drive and knock on the door to see if he could come out and play.  That was when I met Dad’s other friend from work who I will always know as my Uncle Ritchie.  Never did I recall Mom coming outside to see if I was okay or to spend any time with me.

There was one house on the street, five houses down from ours where a woman lived that frightened me. Today I know she was suffering from mental illness. At five I was terribly afraid of her. She would stand inside the front door screen and cackle at us kids when we passed by.  Her silhouette was all I could see behind the screen because the inside of her house was always kept dark. She had long silver hair that cascaded over her shoulders and always wore a frumpy dress of drab coloring and black ankle house slippers. One day she was outside in the front yard pulling weeds and she turned as I came up the street. I was scared when she said hello to answer back. She let out that cackle of a laugh and told me she was a witch and liked to eat little kids like me. She had a husband who we never saw except when he would be outside cutting grass in the spring and summer and shoveling the snow in the winter. He drove an old grey car and went to work in the morning about 7:00 a.m. and arrived home at 5:00 p.m. He never spoke to anyone and the neighbors knew nothing about him. We all knew the crazy lady who we called “The Witch.”

One day while riding my tricycle that I loved so much when right in front of her house the bike broke down in front of it.  I hit the sidewalk hard when it broke in two and I began to cry.  The lady was at her front screen door and I heard her let out the loudest cackling laugh I had ever heard which scared the piss from me. I scrambled out of the tangle of metal that once was my bike and ran home to get Mom.  Crying and pissy  I told Mom, ” My bike broke in front of the witches house and she was there laughing at me.”

“Where is your bike? Did you bring it home?” Mom asked while smoking her Winston cigarette and watching ” All My Children” on the floor model color television that was in the livingroom where we weren’t allowed to be unless it was a special occasion. This was her time for 1/2 hour every day she would watch her soap opera and now I was intruding upon her time.

” No! She was laughing at me and she eats kids ! She told me so!  I don’t want to be eaten by her ,” I said between snot, sniffles, and tears.

” Well go get it! You see I am watching my story,” Mom snapped at me. Fortunately her soap opera was almost over. That was the only reason she got up to go with me.

” I’m scared Mommy, can’t you come with me?” I pleaded.

” Wait til this is off and I will. Are you wet? Did you piss your pants? Why didn’t you come in and pee?” She rolled a thousand questions off her tongue in the screechy voice she had when pissed off. ” Go get some dry panties and shorts on.”

I tried to tell her that I urinated when the Crazy Lady started to cackle. She had turned back to the T.V. where a very young Susan Luci a.ka. Erica Cane  was arguing with Phoebe Tyler. I ran to my room which was upstairs,  peeled my wet bottoms off,  grabbed some panties and shorts and put them on.  I walked back down stairs just in case she heard me running in the house. Then I would be in more trouble.

When I came back into the living room , she was getting her shoes on. Mom was only 5’4″ tall and weighed about 85 lbs. She had  platinum blond hair which was thin and fell across her face when she bent over to tie her laces. Mom was thin and always trying to put on weight. She was never happy with her weight and would try to use these Carmel candy chews along with some weight gain drinks to put weight on.

” Come on, let’s go .  Where are the pissed in clothes you took off ? You left them upstairs didn’t you ? ” She popped me upside my head as if to say “dumb ass”, and went out the side door.  For some reason we weren’t allowed to even open the front door for any reason and always had to use the side door.  I ran behind her to keep up. She got to where my bike lay on the side-walk and there she was The Crazy Lady at her front screen door very still and very silent. Mom picked up the tricycle with both hands and marched back home with it, setting it on the patio in the back yard and told me to get in the house.

I don’t remember what happened after that I suppose I was made to take a nap or sent to the basement to watch t.v.  on the old black and white we had.  Nothing was on at that time of day and we never got to see stuff like Mr. Rogers Neighborhood or even better Sesame Street. I had some  toys that I liked to play with that kept me occupied until everyone else got home from school.  I missed that tricycle and never got another bike until I was eight years old when my sister and I got pink two-wheel bicycles for Christmas.  Parents were really cruel back then. when you got a bike for Christmas and couldn’t ride it until spring maybe even summer if the weather was shitty or Dad didn’t put them together yet.  Oh and forget training wheels or Mom helping you learn how to ride your bike. Our second oldest brother was the one who taught us how to ride.

Dad worked everyday and Mom was a stay at home Mom since I could remember. I vaguely recall her working at a doctor’s office for a little while because he was the one that delivered me when I was born.  His wife and I shared the same birth date and for a few years Mom would take me into Bratenahl to the doctor’s house for my birthday because his wife had a present for me and she cooked my favorite meal Assisi di peppy. I remember he made house calls when I was ill too.  I loved the penicillin liquid we would have to take. I loved the children’s chewable aspirin too, so much that I would climb up on the bathroom sink and steal them out of the cabinet to eat. I didn’t need them I wanted them for the taste , that orange flavored candy taste.

It was 1969, the year I was five. It held a lot of changes for me. I experienced a plethora of events that shaped who I was to become for the rest of my life and there will always be that little girl who lives inside who is afraid of the crazy lady down the street and stealing things that I liked and wanted more of no matter what the consequences would be. I feared my father for two reasons One. he was larger than life and I would never be as powerful as he was at five years old and two he was strict and had a quick hot temper and would whip my ass for the slightest infraction.  He would line us up from the oldest to me the youngest take off his belt and whip all of us for something

” I got the right one since no one knew who did ( whatever he decided was messed up). and then the rest can beat the one who wouldn’t admit the fault for having to get whipped.” Dad would say

I also loved, admired, and worshiped Dad. He was handsome and strong. He had a deep baritone voice that was sexy even to me at that age and his voice when he sang was beautiful. I was his little girl and if anyone said something bad about him, look out cause  I was ready to fight. I would do whatever I could to please him and get his approval. Over time with the belittling remarks, name calling, and out right disapproval for what I tried to accomplish and being told that I was a mistake and shouldnt have been born or that I was supposed to be born a boy I was born in the wrong body defeated my self-esteem. the more I tried the worse it was. i tried to become a boy. I couldn’t become one physically so I became a tough broad. I didn’t brush my hair, wear make-up or dresses, never carried a purse. I walked, talked, cussed, fought and dressed like a boy, hung with the boys and did boy activities. I tried to be what he wanted. I liked boys and for the most part they accepted me as one of the boys. It was never enough. I had failed at every attempt I had made.

At five I had low self esteem, felt less than, was never good enough, did not fit in, confused of my sexual identity, was approval seeking, was taking things for the effect, looked for male approval, wet the bed, felt betrayed, abandoned and lacked trust that my needs would be met by my mother, spent hours alone doing activities that were solitary, had difficulty making friends , was a thief and a liar. to protect secrets.

Tip of the iceburg here but seems like I was already on my way to some bad choices.   Let me know what you think. Have you had any similar experiences. Please feel free to share below leave a comment