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3 - Before and after

RubyRosie

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Ok so I posted a tiny bit and I didn't die. So far. My anxiety has been high, so my body definitely thinks it's going to die, but it's a false alarm. I haven't been sleeping well at all. Even with an as needed anxiety med, and a sleeping pill, and some bedtime tea, and some CBD oil. Don't worry, I didn't overdo it. Just one of each. I just want to pass the fuck out and turn my brain off for a while.

Writing what I did made me remember a few things, like the glass pudding dishes. Like how I knew the taste of my mother's fury when I was so very little. It tasted like a penny in my mouth. That was probably because getting backhanded often also lead to getting a split lip. Her temper was the taste of my blood. No wonder I fucking hate her so much. If you asked me three months ago, do I hate her? I would have said no, I just don't want to have anything to do with her. She hasn't earned the right to be in my life. This is why my kids never knew her as a grandma.

But now... Now I guess some things were festering. I feel like a shitty person because I honestly wouldn't be sad if karma caught up to her. I don't want her to suffer a long agonizing death, per se... I just wouldn't think the world would be a worse place without her in it.

For a very long time I held all the anger in. I didn't want her to do anything but ADMIT that she believed me. I mean for fucks sake she walked in on him touching me so many times. How could she deny it? Then after my Daughter was born I moved back to the state I grew up in. We were going to be within 30 miles of her. I knew I had to confront her. For the sake of my kids. I had to draw a clear line. (Though looking back on it now, damn near 20 years later, I had grounds to cut ties with her based solely on the physical abuse alone.) But I was young, and hopeful thatshe'd somehow want to change.

So we met for coffee. Just a small tourist diner, the lot was filled with trucks pulling fishing boats. I walk in and see her and the waitress comes over and says "oh wow, this must be RR, well you've grown haven't you." The irony is that my mom picked this place because she wanted someplace not in her small town and not in mine. I think she was hoping to not know anyone. The second irony is that aside from having hair the same colorbut several shades darker than hers, we look very much alike. There is no denying the family connection. Not at all.

So I tell her that absolutely my stepdad (the one from the previous post, yup I called him my dad in that one- I didn't know he was my stepdad until I was 18) is not allowed to have any contact with my children. None. She gets huffy about this. I say if she wants to come see them she's welcome to come to my place and see them. It's not who you trust with your kids that matters, it's who they trust. She gets pissy cuz she knows I just implied she might allow them to be eaten by a pack of wolves. She says "what do you want me to do RR? Go home and kill him and spend the rest of my life in jail?" I say " don't be ridiculous, I just want you to believe me." "And if I believe you, then what? Huh? I go home and kick him out and spend the rest of my life alone? I'm not going to do that to myself."

The place was about half full. Not too busy. I remember my face felt hot. She chose him over me so many times. Sacrificed my innocence to keep him in her life. She knew that any decent person who believed the truth would be morally obligated to act. She knew. And she was deliberately chosing to remain in denial. She knew the truth. She knew the truth!

I stood up and pulled out my wallet and fumbled around for a 5. I was shaking. Finally I said, loud enough for the whole restaurant to hear. "Ok, well I hope you have fun sleeping with a child molester for the rest of your life!!" And turned around and walked past the waitress, handed her the money, and walked out to my car.

I was shaking. I was so mad. Not that I ever had any doubts about how she felt about me. I was a nuisance. I was the unwanted surprise baby. I was her bastard firstborn.

I somehow drove through my tears and then I thought, "that was cruel, I can't just leave it like that" so I pulled off. She was driving behind me and pulled up a few car lengths behind me when she saw me pull over. I got out of my car and she got out of her truck and we were both crying. She came over and have me a hug and I said

"I'm sorry mom" 

"I know, I know"

"I love you"

"I love you too"

"But I'm not going to let you hurt me anymore. Goodbye"

She stiffened and turned and walked back to her truck. She drove off around me, back home to him, the one she chose. I sat there in my car crying for a long time, until I finally told myself to suck it up. Then I drove home to my babies.

The thing about it is I had a head injury like 10 years after this confrontation with my mother. My memory for certain things anymore is just shit. I can't remember what I ate for breakfast, where I left something. I always have to write down my to do list or I'll forget half of it. Before I had a decent memory. But now, not so much.

Why couldn't the part of my brain that got damaged have been the part that remembers the smell of my mother's lipstick as he smeared it on my lips, the taste of his tongue in my mouth? The smell of safeguard soap and old spice after shave? The sound of him brushing off his foot with his hand before he put his socks and boots on?

Why couldn't that memory have been the one erased in a car wreck?

RR



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