Tuesday, October 11, 2022 12:17 PM
As my book editor reviewed my draft manuscript, she read thoughts about my childhood which needed expanding. Thoughts told my story, but my words were only at surface level and lacked vulnerability. I decided in order for me to be fully authentic, I had to express painful situations and share information that wasn't talked about in a 1970s small town. To be fully transparent and to allow further healing, I have to talk about a subject that will make some uncomfortable.
Many don’t know that I grew up in a home where domestic abuse and assault occurred on a regular basis. Daddy was likable, but also a womanizing alcoholic who gambled. Daddy’s temper was unpredictable. My earliest memories include hearing my mother’s cries when my father would hit my mother. I shut my eyes and closed my ears as much as I could. It happened regularly, and I thought it was normal. Even after 50 years, I remember the fear and worry that I would suffer like my mother did. I am grateful that I never received any physical abuse, but the emotional pain has affected me and my relationships.
After 13 years of marriage and her emotional scars and wounding, Mama made the choice to separate and divorce in the early 1980s. Unfortunately, people judged her. I was glad that my parents divorced. Daddy received custody of my brother and me. Years later, I found out that Daddy would only sign divorce papers if she relinquished custody; it wasn’t that he wanted us, but to get out of paying child support. Mama moved to Mississippi without telling me near the end of my 5th grade year. I loved my mother deeply and understood why she had to leave.
Daddy worked second shift when I was 10 years old. I spent many nights alone at home with no supervision, but secretly, I was glad that I didn’t have to be around Daddy. A classmate’s mother stepped in and was going to reach out to a county agency so I wasn’t at home alone. Within a few months, I was happily living with my grandparents, and ultimately I moved to Mississippi to live with Mama.
In love and His light,