Looking back over my life, I have one regret. Although I tell those I love, that I love them, I don’t always say thank you. Sometimes we learn from the most unexpected people, learn from those who love us and those who don’t. We learn from those who abuse us, valuable lessons in living, so today I am thanking everyone who played a part in this thing called life, my life.
Firstly to where it began with the woman they called my mother. I want to say thank you for teaching me how not to parent, how not to be a Mum. For teaching me not to trust those I should have been able to trust, although sometimes I forget this and get hurt all over again. Thank you for teaching me at a very early age, not to feel emotionally, and to accept my lot in life, where I stood in the scheme of things, or rather in your scheme. I want to thank you for showing me the wrong way to be with a child, the wrong way to parent. Thus teaching me the right way. For making me determined that if I had children I would be the opposite of you and never allow others to hurt them. You stood by when I needed you, so you also showed me how to listen to children, to believe, not only to what they say to me but also to what is never said. And then to protect them. So Thankyou.
Secondly, to Bill, my abuser. You taught me how to close myself off from feelings of fear that horrified me, to pain that traumatized me and to know the difference between the ‘love’ you showed me, day after day and real love. This was when I learned to find a safe place in my mind, somewhere I could go to whilst you were abusing me, somewhere the pain and horror couldn’t reach. To survive. A valuable tool that I use today with clients who have suffered trauma in their lives. I want to say thank you for making me aware, that those closest to me are as likely to hurt me as any stranger I meet. You took away my childhood and left a frightened child whose life was scarred for ever. But through you I met Steve and now, years later, he is a brother who loves me. But mostly, Thankyou for instilling in me, that I must always look out for children and keep them safe, that if they say someone is hurting them, to listen, believe and act. To watch those who get close to my children and look to why .So Thankyou for that. I have been told that what doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger; you didn’t kill all of Cassie so perhaps I should , in a way , thank you for making me stronger.
I wish I had told my ‘Dad’ William how much our quiet times meant to me. Outside in his cold dreary shed, the place he would often go to get away from the onslaught that was his wife. Many a time we spent talking and sharing things, not deep down things, as he was one of few words but those moments meant a lot to me, so thank you Dad. The night you died, you said Goodbye, something you never said, it was always TTFN, Ta Ta for now. I knew at that moment you would not come back from the operation. I know I told you I loved you I just wish I had said Thankyou for being my Dad, even though you were never allowed to show me. I knew. So thank you Dad. x
Although love was not often shown to me by my siblings, as the years went on I became very close to Ellen. We didn’t see each other very much but talked on the phone every Sunday for years. She became my friend , sharing memories of our childhood and I was surprised at finding that she knew things were ‘strange’ between me and Bill, my abuser but was a child herself and so never thought about it much. She said it hurt her how the woman they called my mother, showed me no love and as the adult Ellen told me she was sorry. She never understood Anne’s dislike of me and told me she knew it was nothing I had done. So Thankyou Ellen, for caring and for telling me so. I miss you x
Then there is Rosie, someone I remained close to throughout our adult life. I thank you for the times you tried to warn me about Anne. The times you showed me that I was better than her. We became close when I was a child and you a young adult, with me teaching you to read and handle money. You have managed so well over the years but still could not read properly. I used to think how you were missing out, I never dreamed that this aspect of you was the part that would destroy our relationship. How others would use your inability to read to get to me and hurt me the way you did. So Thankyou for the early days. Thank you for the time you came and stayed with us in our cottage and we had such fun but ultimately for teaching me that believing IN me, was so easily lost by other’s lies and deceit.
I want to say Thankyou to Tom, just for being Tom. Selfish to a fault but as a child, as loyal to me as he was able to be. I also want to thank you for being there when I needed you all through my life. For bringing Melissa home when she left at 15, because I wouldn’t let her sleep with her boyfriend in our home. Yes you are and always will be selfish but I love you and know you love me so Thankyou for that.
I had two Nans and thanked them both before they died, for loving me. Quietly, sometimes secretly, but we all knew how we felt. So I told them and thanked them.
So that was the family I was brought up in, a very dysfunctional family whose head of the house, the Mother figure was anything but that to me. I suppose really we didn’t stand a chance as a family, because we never learned how to be good and kind to every member of the family. If ‘she’ was not talking to one of us, usually me, no one spoke. Not healthy.
Then in chronological order, there is Edward. I want to Thankyou for My Blessing. Melissa. We had her together and I didn’t really give you a chance, I see that now. She was so precious to me and I wasn’t sure you were ready for fatherhood, I think now that I shut you out where she was concerned. I am sorry. But she kept me going for the first few years of her life, helped me when things were bad and especially when I lost Jack. As a child I couldn’t have asked for more. She was pretty, funny, loving and kind, would do anything for me and anyone else. She looks like your mum, a lady I loved dearly and has your aunt’s colour hair. A beautiful child she was. Even after we broke up Edward, you still loved me and found it hard to move on but eventually you did. So Thankyou for loving me, for our then beautiful sweet daughter and for showing me the difference between love for a husband and love for a friend
My daughters were my saviours. They were both funny, kind and loving . When I was coming off the Benzodiazopines that I became dependent on, to escape the memories of childhood, Melissa would take over the housekeeping and Lucy would be my moral support , my emotional strength. The last 6 months were the worst and we helped each other through. We were very close. I think I ‘over loved’ them. Became a bit too protective, wanting to keep them safe. Sometimes I suppose I was possessive with them and for that I am sorry. But thank you both, as children you were a delight to have around. No tantrums, no bad behavior, nothing to upset me or make me cross. I loved you and you loved me, we muddled through together, so thank you for those years, those memories, they meant so much to me.
Then Peter. I know that I never thanked him enough for changing a frightened woman who couldn’t really be a woman in many ways, into a warm, sensual loving person. Thank you for making me real. For teaching me to understand the love between a man and a woman. A magical time locked away in my precious memories forever.
I don’t need to thank Daniel, here, in this post. I tell him every day. He took me and both of my daughters, plus many animals and we became one. His strong loving arms and sense of loyalty have helped me through some terrible adult times and it is he who is helping me now in the latest nasty in my life. He knows how much I value what we have.
And now, today.
I want to firstly thank Jack. We don’t have a lot of contact but I know a bit about his life and hope to see him in the Summer , God willing. He taught me not to trust that promises made would be kept. He has taught me about loyalty and the love of a son. He has my back, I know that; more so than some might feel I deserve. So thank you Jack.
Every day Lucy does something that makes me proud and love her more. She is my confidante, my daughter and my best friend. Over the years, as an adult, she has tried her best to help me through hard times, especially of late when her sister has kicked mud in my face, yet again. Every time this happens, it is Lucy who has been there, reminding me that Melissa is much like her aunt Anne and the woman they called my mother. I tried hard not to see this but now know her to be right. She is, as I brought both daughters up to be, honest, kind and caring and possibly the nicest person I am lucky enough to know. I am proud to be your Mum Lucy. I have learned from you, how to understand that you can’t change people who don’t see that they are being dishonest or unkind, or both. You told me that you can’t change those who see nothing wrong in what they are doing. Took me a long time to learn but I have now so Thankyou for that and for being you and being here.
And then there is Melissa. My blessing. Who as a child was my reason for living, my sunshine, my everything. She always knew how to make me smile, she wiped away my tears over Jack and was a happy funny much-loved little girl. She always knew how important honesty was and is, for me, I brought her up to be straight and true and not to lie or steal etc. She knew that I wouldn’t tolerate lies. As I wrote in my last blog, she tested me to the limit when she was older and we both failed the test.
But I have to thank her for the things she has taught me of late. She has taught me that Nature is stronger than nurture. If it is ‘in you’ to be nasty, like her grandmother and her aunt, then sometimes that is stronger than the things you have been taught. I think perhaps I expected too much of her, I thought being loved and cared for, would eliminate any of the nasties inherently in side of her. It didn’t. She is, I am ashamed to say, dishonest and lacking in any kind of empathy or integrity. She is selfish and looks only to her own needs. Maybe she believes this to be untrue, but it isn’t. Unless it pleases her, is of benefit to her, she may, as her grandmother before her, fool people into believing she is a good person, but she isn’t. Good people don’t go around destroying people’s dreams, their lives, using lie after lie as an excuse. She has also taught me that sometimes people never really grow up. She is still ‘telling tales out of school’, only difference is ,she is involving people in her own issues, our problems, who have no place.
But most of all she has taught me that sometimes unconditional love is not possible. She has caused me so much pain of late, broken my heart into a thousand pieces and this time nothing can mend it. So I think in a way, making herself un-lovable, like her aunt Anne, her accomplice in the destruction. But in a way, I have to thank her for this. Making it impossible for me to love someone I loved with all of my heart and soul, protected, supported, cared and looked out for, all of her life: making it not feasible to love this person I don’t recognize, she has made it possible for me to move forward and accept this. So thank you for that Melissa, it has made my life easier in a way. Maybe now the pain will ease..
Now to a Thank you to all my readers who have become friends and allies during the past 7 years. It has meant so much to me having your messages, your comments, your emails etc, it has really blown me away and helped me so much.
You have all made revisiting the horrors of my childhood worth all the pain. You have showed me being a survivor is a good thing and something I should be proud of.
You have supported me when certain people have commented, told lies, written nasty evil posts etc .and showed how much you care. So thank you all for everything.
I will continue to write, produce my stories , tell the truth in every one. It may look as though I am defeated but I am not. Yes I am heartbroken and feel battered and bruised , once again by those who I least thought would hurt me but I will continue, I have no choice. I owe it to everyone I have mentioned to show that I am stronger than those who have bullied in such a nasty cowardly way.
My favourite saying. ‘Watch this space’.
Have a good week everyone