Brunch

He climbs into her car and inhales her sweet body splash. The adrenaline rush from sneaking around makes them both shake as they embrace.

“We have to leave, we can’t stay here she’s shopping nearby. Let’s go.”

The driver takes off to the motel as he pulls together the cash he carefully squirreled away without his wife’s notice. They only have a few hours together and can’t waste a second, so the typical area traffic makes them both even edgier.

“Two hours please” she says as they grab the room key. The place is what you expect, a shitty roadside motel. The kind of place built for affairs and day hookers.

The room itself is gross but they don’t care. They have been talking, dreaming, writing about this moment for over a year and won’t let anything ruin it. It’s not about the room, their spouses, or anything else other than their own passion and desire.

The hours fly by as they entwine themselves with reckless abandon. Not a care in the world as they shower off the stench of their betrayal. He texts his wife as they leave and head to the diner for their cover story.

They cuddle up in a booth, play footsie, kiss, and chat. Relive the memory of their deepest darkest secret, the one they will take to the grave. He knows her husband won’t stand for this, even if caught he’ll deny this ever happened. He must protect her and this at all costs, even if it means he loses his wife, he cares not.

No one will ever know the details, even they will have different versions of the same stolen moments. However I like to think that the reality of the story, is far more scandalous than I could ever dream up.

Tied

Tattered and tangled I pull from my pocket

A length of string, but don’t know where I got it

Red in color and as thin as a hair

You almost can’t see it, but I know it’s there

It twists and it turns before kinking in knots

Still have trouble keeping it from my thoughts

Impossible to release and unable to forget

The ending of this story seems to me: dead set

Press me for details and none you will get

For I have secrets here that are too delicate

Sharing with you just doesn’t make sense

I’d rather be elsewhere, please don’t take offense

For that string in my pocket is fit to be tied

And the other end I know I must find

Destiny and Love might await my arrival

But to be truthful I’d be content with survival

I’ll take up this voyage, and set my course

Untangle the line, and discover it’s source

My Love I am coming, it’s frightfully true

There is nowhere to hide, “I’ll find You”

The Wound

First time I anticipated the cut and saw the steel of the blade before it ever pierced the skin

The second time I was not so lucky,  it entered next to the first while that one was still barely stitched together

One puncture was now two gaping holes, and neither one given any time to heal like it needed

I was undeserving of medical care and left alone to lick my gashes, given salt from time to time to remind me

Years passed in the same cycle: pick till it bleeds, rub, pain, remember your mistake, punish yourself

Over and over again until the scar still shows the thick keloiding that comes with a repeated assault

A reminder so large now that there is no way to ignore it and no way to pretend you don’t know what caused it

The size and shape make it clear to all those who glimpse it what came before, and how I healed it

The horrors that brought that reminder, the actions of mine that brought on the attack and how I felt I deserved it

I remember every moment in exquisite agony every time I pick at it, I punish myself by making it bigger, adding to the layers of scar tissue

But no more, today I have finally been given the tool needed to lop off the entire scar

It will cut deep into my skin and free me from the prison of my own obsessive need to relive the trauma

This is the chance to finally let go of the raised ugly scar and behaviour that imprisons me

It will be a painful complicated surgery without anesthesia, going possibly down to the bone

Every possible bit of scar tissue will be removed, no chance taken this time with the proper doctor in tow

Surgery will leave a permanent mark but this scar will be different, stitched together with precision and given the proper aftercare

Allowed to heal the right way, in a calm relaxing environment and with an attentive nurse to watch over my progress

I’ll trade the old complicated oozing scar that plagued me, for a deep red line across my heart

You’ll still be able to see the scar, but now you’ll see the aftercare and love that proper healing brings to a wound of this nature

I’ll be able to display this badge of courage as a reminder of the unconditional love that fixed it, rather than the evil that caused it so long ago

Sea Glass

Tall violent waves crash onto the black sand shores of your lashes as I set sail once more, this time in a gale so great I risk both our lives

The seas I’ve become a master of exploring are calling my name again, and I can’t deny the siren’s song as it beckons to me

I’ve charted what I thought was every nautical mile in that expanse of wilderness, but still there’s more there than before

A new island on the horizon, one brought forth as only land masses can be: By great violence of the earth

The plates heave and press against one another causing quakes and fissures, all while underwater volcanoes erupt, spewing molten rock and smoke into the air

I know someone has been here before me but I do not care, they were not the dedicated explorer I am, and I will not give up so easily

Not because I’m the best one to do it, not because I’m the most intelligent, or even the most talented one to try, but because I am made for the job

Every failure has taught me a lesson for the journey, opened my eyes and put a brand new tool in my kit, giving me strength

It’s my passion, it’s my life’s work, it’s my purpose in this life and I refuse to give into failure, the potential reward is greater than any of the most precious gems

“Do you know even what you were looking for?” I whisper to the wind as I leave the comfort of the dock

Rain pours down in large droplets all around our vessel, and the smell of cooling lava tells me exactly what direction in which to head

Those dark amber pools flickered with bright shots of gold and red, the dark brown smoke around each, and the deep black portals might scare you, but I see the future…

… and I am not scared.

Glass Shards

It was like a slow motion replay

I knew the bullet was coming

I could see it in the distance and yet I did not move

I felt the words on your lips before they passed through them

I knew the answer to the question before I even asked it

and yet still I am shattered

Still this glass heart broke into tiny shards

When you think it can’t be more broken

Just when you think the light is coming

That is when you realize that the light was not the end

but merely the eye of this terrible storm

Hang on tight my dear,

this is going to be a big one.

Sister

I wish I could peek in your mind and see what you hide

There are moments I see where the real you resides

My dearest half-sister we are so far away

not just in our age, also in how we behave

But there are actions of yours, opposite of mine

that lead me to think it’s finally time

For me to reach out and actually ask

about the awful things in our past

But your telling me no, and refusing my help

saying I need to leave you to yourself

So now that the past is affecting your present

you want me to be there, but I won’t consent

I too am broken, and need some healing

I just can’t be here when you aren’t listening

I’m afraid that what I’ve done is just too much

that you’ll never be open to my rules and such

But I want you to know, if ever that changes

that I will be here to listen to all of the rages

Not just to theirs, but to mine as well

even when I hurt and the tears start to swell

Should that day not come, and our bond break

I hope you know that it is never too late

I am still broken, but now I am ready

to be the support you need to be steady

What happened to us, is not our fault

we don’t have to pretend our heart is a vault

That the lies we’ve been telling are not the end

that we really are worthy of the love that we spend

You are a human with faults and trauma

who always seems to be starting the drama

but if you ever decide to give that up

To open the vault and let it erupt

I’m here to listen and honestly say

that I’m sorry our family treated you this way

That the shit in our past doesn’t negate

all the awesomeness we have innate

You’re strong and great, it’s time you know too

that Ashlee I am actually very proud of you

The fact we survived, is more than most

and I will never forget the hurt we host

This gift I give you is the wisdom of time

even if it came in this strange rhyme:

Don’t let your past define your future

You dear are stronger than our abuser

 

 

Daddy Dearest

To my Dearest Father,

Where were you? I needed you.

Your absence in my life has caused me more paid than I can even begin to explain. I  know I have said over and over again I didn’t need you, but that was never true. I was trained from birth to be strong, to be independent, to not show weakness. I had to create a brick wall around myself and my feelings. I became so strong I was made of stone. No one came in, nothing mattered. I could cut anyone out at any time and never let anyone know I needed them. Why? Because I don’t know how to need someone, I don’t know how to trust. I needed my father to show me what love from a man looked like, and without that I became hollow inside.

I was abused by my uncle for as long as I can recall. I developed an eating disorder at 9, and lied my way through middle school. I allowed a boyfriend to beat me. I allowed myself to be assaulted by an older male boss in high school. I was groomed by a much older man from when I was 15. I was drugged in college and almost assaulted. I have abused others because I thought that was “love”, and let loved ones abuse me thinking I deserved it. I am broken from what happened to me and having no one to talk to. I never had a male figure in my life I could trust and so I never learned that men were trustworthy. I self sabotaged my marriage and every relationship I had because “all men will leave you in the end”.

I became very good at wearing a mask of independence and strength. I had to learn to turn off my emotions, otherwise I would have crumbled. I had very strong female role models, but none to show me what love and trust really look like. I missed the bond that every girl craves, and by the time a semi-solid male figure showed up I was already well trained to not NEED a man… so I didn’t let him in either. I don’t blame you for what happened to me, nor do I blame my family. It’s MY story, it’s part of who I am… but it’s not who I am anymore. I have been working really hard in the last two years since taking over my Grandmother’s care and I want you to know.

I want you to know that it did hurt me to not have you. It hurt every time I thought you would show up, and didn’t. It hurt me to watch you blame my mom, my aunts, and everyone else but yourself that we didn’t have a relationship. You need to know at the end of the day, that was on you. You could have made it happen, you were my father. You knew where I lived, you knew my grandmother loved you, and you knew my mom worked. You could have come come for me… I wish you did. I wish you were at my wedding, I wish I could have have that moment. I didn’t need you to give me away, but I needed to know a father’s love before entering into a lifelong commitment. It hurt my heart that you didn’t even send a card or a note. You didn’t even acknowledge the biggest moment in my life. I didn’t need you there, but I wanted you there. I never said that to anyone because I thought it would make me look weak, and I was never that on the outside.

But I am on the inside, I’m still that little girl who didn’t get to have her daddy in her life. Father daughter dances make me crumble. I cry and I can’t stop it. Every wedding I go to reminds me that I’m still without that love. I hate that this makes me look weak, and I don’t want people to know but I have to get it out or I won’t heal… and that’s what I’m trying to do. I’m growing now. Now that I am free from the chains that tie me to my abuse and my abusive thoughts I am becoming a woman… and I forgive myself and I forgive you. I know you did the best you could with what you had. That you were broken too and just child yourself then. I understand why, and while I wish it wasn’t true, it is.

I never showed you how grateful I was for the times you were there. For the car, for inviting me into your home, and giving me another extended family. I didn’t know how to react to it then, but I am thankful for it now. While neither of us can go back and fix the past, I need you to know that it hurt me. I need you to know what it did to me, and that I’m sorry I hurt you, and that I hope all can be forgiven, even if it will never be forgotten or fixed. I need to me able to move on with my life and I can’t without getting it out.

I don’t know if we’ll ever be close, I don’t know if my sisters will ever be friends of mine. It’s the situation and decisions you made in the beginning, but we both made in the end that brought us here. I hope you can take responsibility for your decisions, as I have for mine. I hope that knowing that frees you a little bit too. I love you dad, even if I’ll never really be able to show you the way you want to see it. And now I know you love me, even though you may never show me the way I want you to. You hurt me, but I can now see beauty in the darkness and pain. It made me who I am today, and while I’m still a work in progress I am proud of what I’ve done so far.

Love,

The Daughter (you left behind)