Fragments of a Broken Childhood: Lesson 2

635910092486671444-1931218666_homeee.jpgI know it’s hard to believe that I could have anymore to reveal. But sadly, I do. The one thing I want you to keep closely in mind is that I’m no longer trapped in the life I write about. I write about that former life as a way to heal and God willing, to help someone else.

So the next fragment of my childhood stems over a period of 1st grade through 11th grade. This portion, I believe, was most impactful towards my abusing drugs and alcohol.

Back to that same trailer, where I was being fed Jack Daniel’s in the name of “Look what my kid can do.” There were memories there that are so vivid and confusing. I remember my mom showing me a photo album. In that album was a picture of my father standing next to another man about the same age and height. She would point to that other man and tell me, “Amy, that man is your father. He’s your real dad.”

This was said to me as she was drunk. The lights were low, the air was cloudy and the music was going (as always). I’d ask her the next morning about the picture and she would say, “I was just kidding around” or something to that affect. Her reaction, I remember, was as if I did something wrong by even asking. Now looking back, I’d say she was mad at herself but directed it towards me.

I don’t remember having a huge reaction to any of this. I don’t remember crying or yelling at her that it wasn’t true. My guess is that it probably was said to me many times as a child that it became a game of sorts to me. Also this was attention from her to me, so I gobbled it up.

Time would pass after that and I would get passed around as her addiction took her down many times. (Which I’ll write about later) By the 5th grade or so, we got to choose to live with our dad and that’s where we ended up. Seldomly she’d take us on the weekend. Which entailed us watching her party. This particular weekend I went with her alone. She didn’t have her own place so we went to where she hung out a lot. I remember being in the livingroom watching TV when she called me into the kitchen and had me sit on her lap. Makes me wonder if I weren’t a bit younger than 5th grade. But like I said, there was so much instability that it’s hard to place my age in most events.

She then told me that my dad wasn’t my real father. That his friend “B” was my father. I guess I didn’t believe her at first, how could I? We played this game before. But her good friend walked into the room and asked what was going on and she told her friend, “I’m finally telling Amy the truth” the friend seemed to know what that meant and I realized this wasn’t a game anymore. I remember that moment. I don’t remember the rest of that night. Did I lay awake and cry? Did I continue to think on it as a joke?

The next morning I remember it was time to take me back to Dad’s.

Home wasn’t a word for me as I lived always somewhere else never having that home feeling.

She drove me in a black car. She told me we were going to drive by his house. This man that was my real father. I told her no I didn’t want to, but she said we’d just drive by. Next thing you know, we’re pulling into the driveway. At this time I remember begging her to leave but she said we we’re just turning around. Then she was out of the car and going to the door! She and a man walked back to the car. This was “B” this stranger that I had seen in photographs as a child. This is supposed to be my father. They both stood at the passenger window as she said to him, “I told her” and they spoke. I looked down at my lap the whole time. He didn’t make an effort to speak to me. He didn’t kneel down to my level and even try.  Maybe he was doing me a favor since I wasn’t being very open to the idea. Funny that my regret at that time was I didn’t look up. I didn’t have the courage. Not sure what looking up would do, really. That moment was when it all became real to me. And it hurt. I felt like I was betraying the father I knew all along by being where I was at that moment. My dad that I knew as my father, was my refuge. He was my oasis. He was my rock and he was the only one who treated me close to how a little girl should be treated. And now he would be gone too.

The next memory is of me laying on a mattress or couch in the livingroom at my dad’s house. Where I lived at that time. He came in from work and asking my sister why I was crying. She told him what our mom had said and did. His answer was “Oh that.” So it was true and he knew it. This wasn’t a game. I wish he had hugged me and told me the things I needed to hear. But he didn’t. I believe he retreated to his own space.

The “dad” thing wouldn’t get talked about after that day but a handful of times. And not in the way a girl needs to be talked to about it. It was comments from my mom’s mom, “Well you look just like your father, that other man isn’t your real father” Just things like that.

Fast forward to high school. I still don’t know at this time and that bond I always had with my dad was there but it was fragile because the thought was always there…maybe he’s not my dad to maybe he is. I would see “B” at McDonald’s on my lunch hour during high school. I don’t think he knew it was me but I knew it was him. I would tell my friends who he was in the hopes they could help me feel better about it, but they weren’t equipped to help me.

At about 16 years old I had enough. I was bolder and by then could speak up for myself. I asked if we could get a blood test done.

Do you remember my last post I wrote how I remember being in the car with both my parents at the same time only a few times? The day we went to get our blood drawn was one of those days. Looking back, I don’t know why she had to come, but she did. Her blood didn’t need to be drawn. The results came through the mail a good six weeks later. I opened them. My dad, my oasis, my rock was indeed my real father!

“B” to this day doesnt know whether I’m his daughter or not. There are times I think I should find him and drop him a letter to let him know. There are other times the thought is, he didn’t come after me. See, I mailed him a letter of two before I knew the results. He had a chance and he didn’t take it. Kind of a weird feeling being let down and not even found by someone who should want to find you whether they knew or not. Bottom line is none of it was my fault so it’s not my responsibility to fill him in. What do you think? What would you do?

I would later find out that my mother gave me my middle name after “B’s” mother! Can you believe that? A woman she believed to be my grandmother who never was…I was named after her. The Jerry Springer Show couldn’t come up with stuff this crazy!

The totality of all of these events and feelings kept getting shoved down further and further. I drowned them in alcohol and drugs. Once I became sober, these feelings and realizations would slowly drift up and I inevitably dealt with them. Are they gone? No. Do they hurt from time to time? You better believe it. But God………

He brought me out. He became my Father. My earthly father is still in my life. I can’t say he’s the best at what he does but I do try to remember that he was equally hurt at the hand of an addict and quite possibly a sociopath. Pawns in a game. Not all addicts are out to hurt and lie and destroy their loved ones. Some just want what they think they need and stop at nothing to get it. The case here goes beyond that.

So if I were you reading this, I’d be fuming and tsk-ing away. You may even think to yourself that I have a right to rise above and look down on my mother. But honestly? My biggest struggle every day is that I want to forgive her. I want to be like Jesus. I want to love her and excuse her. But I can’t. I have grasped forgiveness for a season. And I’ll be so sure I’m there. I’ve arrived at forgiving…until I get a call. Until I smell a smell. Or see a juice glass. Hear a song from way back when. And I begin all over again.

So what do you think lesson #2 is? Lesson #2 is two-fold. One is- forgiveness is not something that is done but is something we’re always doing. Two: Jesus is my parent. My brother. My sister. My rock. My oasis. And most importantly He is my home! God bless you for reading.

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44 Replies to “Fragments of a Broken Childhood: Lesson 2”

  1. Hi Amy, I was adopted. When I was about 11 years of age my adopted Mother went and dug out the adoption papers and pushed them into my face saying, “here you bastard, nobody wanted you!” 11 years old, I’m not responsible for what was done to me, I’m responsible for what I do with this life I have been given. And in spite of what transpired, I have been given GRACE, so I press forward, forgetting those things that I left behind. We are not what was done to us, we are what we have become in Him. I thank you for sharing, I know it can be hard. Grace and blessings!

    Liked by 7 people

    1. Wow. It’s so true that we are not what we’ve been through. It may be a little hard to write but freeing to put it down in words, give God the glory and send it out into the unknown. Thank you Bruce for sharing. Be well today. I’m praying for your daughter and son to come to God.

      Liked by 5 people

  2. Forgiveness is 70×7. Each new memory may need forgiveness. Forgiveness is not excusing anyone. Even God does not do that. We have consequences. God’s forgiveness entails justification and righteousness before HIM – what Jesus paid.
    The feelings – those will come as you draw closer to God. Oh, He loves you that much!
    ~warm fuzzy glowing because I know you know exactly what I’m talking about~ 😊❤

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Well put. And thank you! We can all look back on our lives and see Jesus right there beside us. When this say God feels far away its only because they keep him far away. He’s always there for us

    Like

  4. I ditto your two-fold lesson #2. When I was in process of God healing my damaged emotions related to childhood abuse and trauma, I would forgive, but then later a new memory would surface and I would forgive again, and so on and so forth. Forgiveness is ongoing, especially with continued abuse.

    From early on in my life Jesus became everything to me, and he still is. My heavenly Father is the only real father I have ever known and Jesus is my husband, my best friend, etc. So, I totally get where you are and where you have been and the lessons you have learned through it all.

    I am so grateful that love lifted you out of your despair and that Jesus put a new song in your mouth, a song of rejoicing in him, and that you are here to give testimony to the healing he has done in your life.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you Sue! Your words bring tears to my eyes. Nice to have people to understand. And it’s not that I want to drag my mom.through the mud or revisit painful experiences for pity or attention. It’s just time to get em out of my head and into others hearts with the intention to help another heal. I’ve also begun to become more close to Jesus and a calm has been sweeping over me. Hard to explain other than i don’t feel that gnawing grip on my soul but more of a settled contentment of who or should I say whose I am. How is your new “just me place?” I think about you in your space singing away with that awesome quilt on the bed

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Amy, Thank you! You bless my heart!! And, you are so welcome, as well!! I do connect with you in so many ways.

        God gives us our stories for a reason, you know. It is not that he wished bad on us, but that our stories are how he took us out of that bad, i.e. how he rescued us from the impacts the bad had on our lives, and how he set us free and is still setting us free, and that needs to be shared with others, because we are not alone in this world in what we have gone through or what we will yet go through.

        The Apostle Paul shared his testimony on a quite frequent basis.

        Yes, the more we are healed of the things of our past, and even our present, the closer our relationship with Jesus will become, and the more we will be at peace with where we are now and even with our past, or present circumstances, as well. I totally get the being content with who I am, i.e. who God intended me to be all along, for I see his hand upon my life in making me into who He wanted me to be.

        Oh, I am loving my “special place.” Thank you so much for asking. It is wonderful having this place where I can be alone with God and where I can work and sing and write music. My voice is old and not in the best shape, but it is the voice I have, and God didn’t say we had to sing at a professional level (by human standards), but that we are to make a joyful noise unto him, so that is what I am doing, in his wisdom, giftedness, strength and power at work within me.

        Love to you! ❤

        Liked by 2 people

  5. Such awesome comments to an equally awesome post. I can’t believe she would tell you that…but then tongues doe loosen with alcohol. I can only imagine the thoughts going through your parents minds as they drove to get the blood work. Oh my gosh!

    I’m thankful that you dad is your dad though. But even more thankful for your heavenly Father who stepped in and is helping forgive, even if daily, and heal.

    Liked by 5 people

  6. Bless your sweet heart Amy! Oh what a fallen world we live in with broken people and bad choices made. But I read HOPE in your post and an example for someone else for them to see that your true Father is our FATHER in HEAVEN. HE alone will love you like no earthly father. So thankful that you ran to the LORD and I know HIS arms were completely open for you Amy! Thanks for sharing you heart!

    Liked by 4 people

  7. I am so glad you have found the Comforter! He is our refuge in time of trouble and gives us the strength to forgive. He knows all about forgiveness to the undeserving. I’ve learned that rendering forgiveness gives us freedom. Sending
    love and good vibes your way!
    💕

    Liked by 4 people

  8. Your understanding of forgiveness is truly profound…obviously birthed from incredible pain…but your wisdom is truly a testimony of your deep faith! I am inspired by your courage and how through Christ you have overcome so much! God bless you greatly, Amy! ❤

    Liked by 3 people

  9. “The one thing I want you to keep closely in mind is that I’m no longer trapped in the life I write about. I write about that former life as a way to heal and God willing, to help someone else.” I love your heart and willingness to be so vulnerable. Thank you for entrusting us with Snippets from your life. With great affection from one of your newest sisters ♥️

    Liked by 4 people

  10. Amy, It is my prayer that every person who has ever been abused or mistreated will find your blog and that they, too, will open their heart to our precious Lord Jesus, and be healed like so many others. You tell it well. Blessings!

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Oh my goodness, Amy — your story is amazing. And so similar to my story.

    Back in January, you posted a comment on my post “Finding My Father, Part Two,” with a link to your post here. But it went into my spam folder and I only just now found and approved your comment. Sorry about that, now I know that I need to check my spam folder on a regular basis.

    Thank you for sharing the link to this remarkable post. We have the same wonderful heavenly Father, yaaaay!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. It is a heart-breaking childhood you had. Am glad you are healing thanks to Jesus, the father of the broken-hearted. One thing ave learnt is that hurting people hurt others. You mum maybe went through stuff growing up too and not knowing how to act, did the same to you. I thank God that He is teaching you about forgiveness. The Holy Spirit will carry you through the process to the point of healing all those wounds. God bless you abundantly for sharing in Jesus name!

    Liked by 1 person

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