Saturday, February 21, 2009

Things that make you go ewwwwwwwww

I had an extra toddler for a little while. I thought my youngest daughter was creepy when she did it but wow, check this kid out...

He was SOUND asleep...didn't even flinch when the flash went off. Creepy ain't it? I think I'm now grateful my lil girl's not quite this bad...

Dear Ex Knight

Many of the therapists I've seen throughout my troubled life have recommended letter writing to anyone who has hurt or offended you, whether they ever read it or not...I know from experience that sometimes just writing the letter is enough.

A few days ago, I stepped out in total faith and done something I've been afraid to do since arriving at my own lil spot on the map and am feeling completely liberated! I've also been thinking it's time to write my letter to Ex Knight. Here goes:

Dear Ex Knight:

More than a year ago, I literally ran away from home because I was scared that you would retaliate for being arrested or act out one of your numerous threats. I've really struggled since leaving and so have our children, more than you can imagine or ever know. Our struggle has been largely dependent on your continued poor judgment and choice.

Because of it, our children have suffered much and given up even more. Our children have had anxiety attacks, been afraid to play outside, and afraid to talk to your mother for fear of saying something to her that, when shared with you, could be used to locate us.

I've consoled each of our children countless times because they've woke up crying from nightmares, always detailing you finding us and acting out your threat to kill one or all of us, I've wiped away their tears as they cried and asked why you don't love them, I've done my best to ease their fears, and I've struggled to be there for them when my own emotions make it difficult to even be there for myself. I've smiled when I've felt like crying, I've laughed when I felt like screaming, and I've picked myself up and dusted myself off so I could keep on keeping on when, in all reality, it would have been easier to give up and give in.

I should hate you. Nobody I know, except maybe your mom and family, would blame me for hating you. Heck a few people even actually encourage me to do it and yet I don't. Instead I'm grateful to you. I know, it's a strange concept considering how abusive you were, but really I am thankful beyond words for you.

Thank you first and foremost for my children. They are one of the two things that matter most to me in this world and I'd be lost without them. The sweetest sound in the world is that of them calling "mommy" and the best feeling I've ever known is that of their arms wrapped around me tightly along with the feel of their lips on my cheek. I owe that sound and feeling to you, thank you.

I'm grateful you were selfish. It allowed me to be selfless. When you put yourself first, it required me to put myself last. I learned how to go without the things I wanted so I could give our children what they needed. I also learned that "stuff" really isn't that important in the grand scheme of things.

Now that I don't have to live with your rage, I find myself thankful for it. I no longer have to look at our precious children bruised and battered and demand to know what you've done. In fact, I've enjoyed a peaceful home for over a year now. One in which there are no fist/feet holes in the walls, no jugs of syrup thrown through the walls, no deliberately broken toys, no flying watermelon, and no interior doors treated like punching bags. If it wasn't for living with your rage, I might not appreciate all of those things the way I do now, so again I thank you.

I am grateful for your lack of faith in my God. It's allowed me to realize exactly how important my faith in Him is. I am grateful that you never lived worthy of taking me to the temple, despite being baptized and ordained to the priesthood. Your failure to do so ensures I will have no problems being sealed for time and all eternity to a worthy mate in the future. Your lack of faith in my God makes me appreciate this feature in others more than ever before.

I've learned to be grateful for your refusal to pay the full court ordered support. You do realize you are more than 2 grand behind right? When you don't, it often requires me to ask others for help. In asking for help, I've learned how to be a little more humble and countless others have been blessed for their service to our children and I. I am also grateful to you for this because it fuels my desire to work even harder to provide for our children.

I do however wish you would realize by not paying your support in full it only alienates you from our children even further. They've repeatedly shared with me that if you really loved them, you'd put them first. I also wish you'd realize that your shortage only hurts you and them. You because the debt will catch up to you eventually, and them because they often have to go without.

At any rate, I am also grateful to you for being essentially none of what I wanted and needed in a spouse and too little of what I did. I settled on or for you and my experience with you has taught me not to EVER do it again. Your failure to be who I used to believe you could be, let alone who I wanted you to be, has allowed me to realize I am valuable and don't have to settle for anyone who can't see that.

In closing, let me say that there are numerous other things I am grateful to you for; however, I lack the time to list them all. Aside from our children though, I think the biggest one is my new life. I am grateful to you for the life I now enjoy.

Your treatment of us resulted in criminal charges. Those criminal charges then caused a safety risk, that risk allowed us to move and the life we now enjoy is simply wonderful. Thank you so very much for the incredible life we now enjoy. Allow me to elaborate...

Though I've no longer a car to call my own, I live in the PERFECT location. There are banks, fast food restaurants and stores of every kind within walking distance. We have 3 different parks we can walk to, a library, a post office, and even a tasty little donut shop too. The apartment we live in now is better than anywhere we've ever lived with you and our neighbors are some of the best we've ever had.

Our children have "Grandma Grandma" back in their lives on a regular basis and countless other loved ones and family surround them. I've finally been able to experience the father-daughter relationship I've always dreamed about with a man I'm honored to claim as my Dad. And, though we share no DNA, he's shown me a father's love in ways I never knew that were possible. This love deepens the love I have for my Father in Heaven. It has also made me more aware of just how much my Heavenly Father loves me. My relationship with my Dad strengthens my relationship with my God and that in turn, strengthens everything else.

I have finally found joy in motherhood and spend countless hours playing with our kids. We do things together now we only ever dreamed of doing together before. We play hard and laugh even harder. We sing all our favorite songs at the top of our lungs and don't worry about whether or not YOU (or anyone else for that matter) likes it, we make silly faces, we play silly games, we are just well silly and it's so much fun! Our children have their mother finally...not a shell of the mother I pretended to be when we were together and it's been such a blessing.

We have a ward that we can rely on to help ease our burden when it sometimes feels to heavy to carry alone and they are EAGER to do it. I have local friends again! I can't even begin to tell you how grateful I am to be able to go out and not worry about what condition I'll find our children in when I return. I go out with friends a lot more now and it's been WONDERFUL. We attend the temple, we make the greatest crafts, enjoy new restaurants, attend each other's parties, hang out at each other's pools, and cry on each other's shoulders when we need to. Man I have MISSED friends!

Our daughters want to marry men just like my new Dad and their new Grandpa and our son wants to be just like him. The kids play outside again, they are doing better in school than they ever have, and are a joy to everyone who knows them. They're learning about serving others and are anxious to do it, and they love all the church activities we go to. In fact, they've even gone to church without me. We finally have a Christ centered home and it's wonderful.

Sure there are still struggles (like when you don't pay the right amount of monies, or they mistakenly think they've seen you or whatever) and honestly single parenting is really tough (but not nearly as tough as living with you was), but we are better than we've ever been.
In short Ex Knight, now our lives are everything we've dreamed they would be and more and we have you to thank for it. Thank you for being abusive and controlling, thank you for being dangerous, thank you for making all the threats you did, thank you for behaving in a way that gave others cause for concern. Our PHENOMENAL new lives are a direct result of your poor choice and we are forever grateful.

I hope you enjoy your life as much as we do ours!


Masked Marauder

Friday, February 6, 2009

Defining Moment

"You should write a book!" I've heard many people say this many times and I'm pleased to report I've finally started writing again. Here is a taste, albeit a little raw, of the project I've just begun...

Lives are filled with defining moments; places in time when one is faced with a major decision, One that will alter one’s course forever. Those moments when one can say “my life has never been the same since...,” or “I don’t know where I would be had I not….” These defining moments sometimes occur by acts of one’s own volition and other times are simply a necessary response to the course of action taken by another. My defining moment came in response to the latter, actions taken by another. And so begins the story of my defining moment...

It was a frigid December afternoon in Colorado when the detective showed up unannounced. Having a somewhat wayward child, I assumed his presence was related to her bad behavior. When he flashed his badge I asked “what has she done now?” To my immediate horror, he informed me that it wasn’t the wayward child who brought him to my door, but an abusive soon-to-be ex husband instead. Oh no, my carefully guarded secret had gotten out and I could no longer hide the tragic fact that my children and I had been abused.

"Come on in," I stammered inviting him in. My stomach dropped to my toes, my heart began to race like an Indy car and the tears flowed down my face likely resembling a miniature version of Niagara Falls. This secret was what caused me to end my marriage; I never knew it would also begin my life.

Opposition in all things

It's been a really trying last couple of days. My head has been pounding, my eyes have been crying, and my heart has been breaking as I struggle to provide for my clan.

There have been problems left and right and people keep saying "hang in there", but guess what I'm tired of hanging in. My arms hurt and are now stretched so far they now resemble Stretch or whatever he was called in Fantastic Four.

Ex Knight shorts me child support all the time and yet I'm powerless to do anything about it because the risk completely outweighs the reward. And yet, his shortage harms the people he claims to love the most...his children. Though not nearly as much as I used to be, I try to be optimistic. The optimistic side of me wants to believe that Ex Knight is doing the absolute best he can to at least provide financially, but the fact is I just don't know and his shortage hurts my children when I can't bridge the gap.

I feel ummm....I feel like a hamster stuck in the ball. I can SEE through the plastic and I know there is SO MUCH more out there but seem powerless to get out of the ball and into the more ya know?!?!? I'm tired...very tired.

I hate being STUCK. In fact, I hate all things even CLOSE to stuck. I don't like being in sticky situaitons, I don't like sticky hands or fingers or faces and I ESEPCIALLY hate being stuck. There's nothing more frustrating than being stuck. Wanting more, praying for more, working hard to get more, and being stuck waiting for it or not getting it. Yes I know, His time is not ours but that knowledge does little to help alleviate the frustration, heartache, and stress that accompany being STUCK. I feel completely stuck on stuck and I've NO idea how to move past it.

Over and over I've asked myself, my dad, and my God why. What on earth is the reason I've got to remain in this stuck position that I detest so much? And then I am reminded that the scriptures say there must needs be opposition in ALL things. Not some things, not a few things, not the easy things, not the hard things, not the fun things, not the sad things, not the happy things, but ALL things.

That concept has sometimes been really difficult for me to get my head around but I'm trying and somehow, when I think there's nothing left, I get on my knees, I get in His word, I dig deep and find just a little bit more as I continue to endeavor all the while trusting that this too shall pass. Hopefully it passes sooner than later.