My Stories: Amy L.
I was 17 years old, scared to death, pregnant, unsure of anything and about to tell my friend that he was going to have another child. There is not a day that goes by where I do not recall the next few hours. Here he is just found out he is having another child and no emotion what so ever until I say that we need to go to the store for groceries. I had school the next day and I needed to pack my lunch. We are about to pull out of the drive when I pop him on the arm in a playful manner and he turned and before I knew it my head was against the window and his hands were around my neck. I recall the so sincere I am sorry over and over and it was never gonna happen again. 17 years old and pregnant, of course I believed Prince Charming.
Six months later and I took his son to the store to get some breakfast for the week. I allowed him to choose and he chose one that was not on sale. We were also in need of milk and a few other little items so I just went ahead and picked them up as well. His son runs into the house very excitedly because he got to choose his very own cereal. I walk inside with a smile because he was so very excited. My hands full of groceries and I catch a glimpse of him, fear that’s all I remember feeling. Moments later I am getting things thrown at me and thrown down and I am six months pregnant. His sister comes by and brings me in to the hospital where they try to get me to pursue charges against him. Oh if they had only gotten to me before him. He had already convinced me that I was not good enough for anyone else, he would never hit me again, he swore.
I got lucky, I had a beautiful, healthy little girl 3 months later. Little did I know she and his son would be his tool in keeping me. I was once again reminded by the doctor that I still could press charges and that next time I may not be so lucky. I of course did not listen and we went home as a family although they did keep me a couple extra days hoping I would change my mind. It was hopeless, I already bought into his mental abuse and I saw no way out. I was a child with a child and actually felt like I was not worth anything. I was the mother of his child and the way he thanked me was by making me feel worthless, what a man!
Two years later and things have certainly not improved but I have gotten much better at faking smiles. Today is our daughter’s birthday and we are having our friends and family over for a party. He gets a call for work and says that he will be gone just a little bit. I ask him to please take my now step son with him so the baby can take a nap before party. Apparently that was not a good idea. He grabbed me by my hair and slammed me into the kitchen wall. A few moments later he grabbed a knife and put it to my throat, “get the house ready” is all he said. By the time our company arrived I was ready to play the young, happy wife and mother I was expected to be. I will never forget how it felt that no one ever tried to help. I know people knew yet they did nothing. I was just a kid and I was in hell.
By now I had an entirely different reason for staying, my step son. His mom was a crack head and his dad was abusive, I was the only one in his life that ever showed him unconditional love. At this point I loved him as my own and there was not a chance in hell I was going to leave him so he could be the new target. All children deserve to be loved and he was no different so I endured the abuse at the hands of his father but in exchange I got the pleasure of loving and raising these children.
My step son has a new video game and he and his dad are playing it as I am in the kitchen starting dinner. My daughter hanging on my leg, another ear infection and she is fussy. I am easily frustrated these days as I am carrying my future all star, I am 7 1/2 months pregnant. I slightly raise my voice in attempt to get my husband’s help. After the 4th attempt I am extremely frustrated and my next move , I wish, well it changed my life forever. I walk into the room to see that they are about to start a new game, I ask again for help which I do not get. I do not ask again. Before thinking it through I unplug the video game and glance at my husband and immediately grab the kids and put them in the bedroom and shut the door. There was not a doubt in my mind that I was about to take a beating. I take off running down the hall and before I could get to the door I was kicked to the ground, I got up and was pushed back until I finally stopped trying. I recently found out that my step son watched this entire event happen. I started spotting but I could still feel him kicking so I tried to wait it out. By the next morning I was hemorrhaging and it was so severe that my shoes were covered in blood they were soaked. I was brought by the doctor himself to the hospital because I kept going in and out and he could not find a vein, they finally put the IV in my head. This doctor never question what happened, he was too busy trying to save our lives. As I delivered my son in attempt to save our lives I was still begging them to let me die, give my son a chance, let me die. I can still hear my voice from that day saying over and over please let me die save my son. A few moments later they show him to me and off they rush to put him on a veniltaor and now it is only me and the doctors as one of them says they will have to take it all if I am going to live. Take it all???? I am 22 years old, NO. At this point my husband still has not even taken the time to come see us. They finally think they have it all under control and just begin to give me transfusion after transfusion. I had lost over 70% of my blood but I still did not feel very lucky to be alive. My beautiful little boy later died leaving me shattered, empty, broken, I would never be the same.
I was asked why I made him do that. At that point I did indeed blame myself, I was his mother and it was indeed my job to protect him and he was gone. I battled major depression, lost weight, could not deal with it so I decided to go to the doctor. He put me on some medicine but I was also still hurting from what my body had been put through so he gave me pain medication. Ding, ding, ding jackpot, I now had something to numb me completely. Codine was my new best friend and how my friends and family did not see it was beyond me. If I was awake I was messed up, it was my way of not dealing. A few months later my step son woke me up, I was high and the look on his face, it ripped my heart out. I looked at my kids and later that day I flushed all of it. I was far from ready to blame my husband, I was still too busy blaming myself.
A few years later and I am indeed a much stronger person by this time, I have my angel to thank for that one. I am stronger and filing for divorce, one friend only one helped me get to this point. Most of my friends I had no contact with anymore but there was one that pretty much forced herself on me and that God she did. Divorce was the best word I had ever heard at this point but my brother was getting married the following week so I chose to wait and have him served after the wedding. It just did not seem fair to me if I had this hanging over our family at such a joyous time especially since it would only be another week. The wedding came and we stood as a family in what I believed our last family moment I would ever have to endure. He was cheating, lying, gambling, abusing, yep I had enough but…..
Before my day came he was diagnosed as TERMINAL. Here was this man that killed my son, almost killed me and I hated him but I still found compassion. Not to mention I was in no way ready to do this on my own I just knew that I did not need to be mentally and physically abused anymore. I was still believing that I was worthless, a whore, a bitch, not worthy of anyone, and that I would never get another man to tolerate me. Funny the way they can just make you feel like crap on a stick, I was merely his puppet. I decided that it would be wrong of me to take our children away from a dying man so I gave him a choice. Stop abusing and you can stay or keep it up and go live with your mom. In doing this I left myself very vulnerable to his attacks and his anger was certainly not about to improve. He did indeed stop hitting for the most part but the mental abuse steadily got worse, I would have much rathered be hit than that. At least when he hit it ended quickly, mental lasts forever. The mental abuse that I endured has been the hardest for me to get through.
He did indeed pass but it was not until 8 more years. I am pretty sure that no one could even imagine how a person becomes compassionate enough to take care of a dying man that has had you living in hell but somehow I did. The last two years were probably his worse, he was not strong and was very sick. I am ashamed to say that I felt I finally had the upper hand. If he looked at me I looked away, if he touched me, I moved, I would not allow him to touch me for two years. When he spoke to me I developed an attitude. I was so miserable and I tried desperately to make him miserable, turns out I have a heart though and I could not be mean. I wanted so bad to let him know I hated him and that yes, he killed my son but I just could not. His dying brought every single good, bad, violent, non violent action out and it was much more than what I ever expected.
When he collapsed my heart left, I sat there knowing that I needed to call 911 but I could not. I had prayed that he would die, I was dead on the inside and I wanted to take him down too. It finally hit me that I did love him, not sure what kind of love, my counselor says more like hostage love but whatever it was I did not want him dead. By the time the helicopter arrived at the hospital he was already gone. He was on life support and I felt like I was watching as I told the doctor to take him off. I did not drop one single tear telling him this. He informed me that he by law had to stay on support for 24hrs so I pulled the kids and told them that in 24 hours he would be gone. Now I cried, I could not see my children hurt like this. Now I finally had some sort of emotion but it was only for them. I had lived in hell for 14 years and he did not deserve my tears. I was not even capable of holding his hand at the time of his passing. I was weak, so very weak. As soon as they pronounced his death, I looked at my children and said “let’s go to Picadilly.” I was pretty cold hearted and this was only the beginning.
The first couple of months were a blur. I tried so hard to paint this perfect little portrait for the kids but to no avail. I decided I needed help, otherwise alcohol was becoming my best friend and I did not want that. First I just went to a counselor and a group and there was just too much rage, anger, hatred, guilt, I needed someone that could help me learn how to get through and be healthy about it. I got a Life Coach and all of a sudden I learned forgiveness. That was one thing I had not been able to do and the bad thing is that it was preventing me from having any real relationships. I did forgive and I have learned to move on though it has been very hard.
Most of us that are bruised, battered, torn apart peice by peice can eventually face our attacker, I can not. It was the hardest obstacle I faced. How do you get rid of anger and hatred so deep but you can not face the person that left you that way? It was an obstacle that left me frozen, it was as though I could not move. I would attempt a step forward and I would fall 5 back. This has not been an easy road, not by far.
I was once his victim, I am now MY SURVIVOR!! I know hell because I lived there. I know what it’s like to wonder how you will feed your children because the man that made me a victim and then died cleaned out our accounts before he died. He gambled my entire life away. I had to move my children from OUR home into an apartment and then to a trailer. I lost EVERYTHING, he took it. His family then broke into my home 5 times and stole every belonging we owned. To this day I still battle with guilt though I know it is not my fault. I have indeed forgiven him for the hell he put me through, I may never understand it but I forgive it. No not for him but for ME and for my son Jordan.
Today I have been a widow for 2 years and I am beyond proud of where I am. I am indeed a survivor. I have heard many people say that I had no choice but to get past it and to stand back up but they are very wrong. I had every choice to stay down and never go forward, I CHOSE TO GET UP! No one could make me get better, I had to do that. No one could make me forgive again I had to do it. I could have become bitter but I chose to be the one thing I have never been, HAPPY! I will always be scarred, I will always be extra careful, I will always wish that I had gotten my moment, my moment to say how I felt. I have heard that everything happens for a reason and to some extent I agree but not my son, he did not have to die.
My family sat back and watched as a man tore me down piece by piece and did nothing. My friends just turned their backs to it thinking that I could control it. Is this really a road that one should have to travel alone? Don’t be the one to wake up one day and see that your friend or family member is dead and you could have prevented it, be the one that steps up.
I am by no means rich, I still struggle on a daily basis trying to recover the life we once lived, the home we once had, the belongings. I have recovered my smile, laughter, some self esteem and I no longer believe I am worthless. It has taken a long time to get here but here I am and I am beyond proud of what I have recovered. He tried to win, tried to take me down in defeat but he COULD NOT! I win, I am here and I am fighting for every moment that I get to SUCCEED!