Done With Your Shit
I heard you the other day. You were sitting in my mother's kitchen, just as you please, like you owned the place. Like you were a friend. But you aren't. You are not a friend. If you were, I would be upstairs enjoying your company. But I was hidden downstairs with my sister. She didn't want to see you either. Not after the hell you put us through. Do you think I have forgotten the years of abuse? Do you think I have forgotten every bruise, every push, every slap to the back of the head? No. I remember everything. Everything except those three months I spent with Mr. Cuervo.
You used to be nice. You used to be a good guy. There were good days back before...I don't know what happened. Back before you became an overbearing bastard. You were carefree and happy. You even smiled and laughed. Then the fights began. You started treating my mother, sisters, and me like we were dogs that needed to be trained. We were from the south and new to the east coast. Your family came here with on one of the first ships to this country and have been here ever since. You considered yourself a pedigree. Your family had class and social standing. Your father was a respected police officer and president of the Fraternal Order of Police once upon a time. So we became a project. You wanted my mother because she was gorgeous with her beautiful brown eyes that were highlighted by her inherited Cherokee features. Nice pair of tits, you always said, even to us, very surprising for a woman with four children. And you liked us too, at one point. You may have even loved us in your own way. I don't think so. I think you tolerated us because you wanted our mother. You had an idea of a perfect family and we didn't fit. You charmed our mother and convinced her that she a broken china doll and you had the glue. You preyed on her insecurities. It must have been so easy, convincing her like you did. How lucky she was the have somebody like you love somebody like her. After all, she had been a teenaged mother, in and out of abusive relationships. She was from a less than savory family. You dazzled her with ideas of a perfect, happy family. Sure, you wanted to take care of her and raise her children as your own.
You didn't care about her past or her family. We would make a new family.
Of course you wanted her to complete her education and follow her dreams to be a better person.
But first, you had to fix us.
It started with taking away our individuality. One day while I was at school, you went through my clothing and threw away every black piece of clothing I owned. You couldn't stand to have a daughter that liked “goth” clothing. No, I had to be the epitome of taste, not a classless piece of shit, as you were so fond of calling me. My closet was filled with Abercrombie, Old Navy, Aeropostale, and clothing that was expensive-- too expensive for the meager salary on which we lived. We barely had enough to eat, but you insisted on the fifty dollar shirt and the seventy dollar pants. I put up a fight, but you had my mother so enamored that she complied.
Next it was our opinions. We had always been able to voice out thoughts and feelings, as long as it was respectful. But no. We were in your house, the rules were yours and we were not allowed to have an opinion. The moment we opened our mouths, you were in our faces, screaming at us, telling us how we didn't know what we were talking about and to shut up. Most of the time you would back us up into a wall and poke our chests until they bruised. Or grabbed us by the arms and threw us around the room. We never landed into anything soft. The bruises were hidden from our mother under the threat of more abuse.
Then it was our movies, our books, our music. It was all wrong, wrong, wrong. We were stupid southerner. We were uncouth and uncivil. Did you feel empowered when Mom just stood by as you paraded around like the king of your pathetic little castle?
I would fight. I tried to protect my sisters. I tried to prove to Mom how horrible you were. My teachers, the school counselors, everyone. No one listened so I stopped talking. It was safer that way. You saw that as a victory. It was exactly what you wanted. I stopped fighting. That was about the time you convinced the pediatrician and my mother that I was obese and needed to be on weight loss medication. I was sixteen and I weighed one hundred and thirty pounds, which was perfect with my body type. I loved how you managed to convince everyone that I was the problem. I was fat and that was the reason I had a bad attitude, not the reaction to the phentermine you forced upon me, nor a result of the depression. It did not matter what the other doctors said. I didn't have depression. I was sixteen and just being problematic. I would be happier when I was ninety pounds. Think of all the cute clothes I could wear! I still wonder how you came to this conclusion—thinking it was okay to force a teenager to throw up their food because they were “too fat” and then forcing her to take an appetite suppressor that severely altered her mind in a very negative way. The rage. The uncontrollable rage from the pill spilled over and I became a bully, especially to my sister.
I also loved how you would tell humiliating stories to all of your family and friends as a malicious punishment for whatever slights I had done. You delighted in making me look like an idiot by rubbing my family's deeds in my face. You made sure that everyone knew that I was conceived under a non-consensual encounter. You even said that to me one day in the car. “How do you think your mother feels looking at the product of a rape everyday?”. You said that to me. You said that it was partly my fault that she had trauma issues. I was fifteen. Fifteen. You thought it was funny addressing me as “Rape Baby”. And just like that, you drove a wedge between me and my mother-- a wedge that will always be here. It will always be in my head.
When I was old enough, I left. I moved in with the man you so desperately tried to get rid of for two years. He didn't fit in with your perfect family either. He stood to you and protected me. You hated the fact that you could not bully him away. After I moved, you accused me of stealing medications, money, or stupid objects in the house. This was absurd, of course. You couldn't stand the fact that I was finally out of your reach. I was finally happy. Everyone could see that, even your own parents. You pretended you were happy, but I could see the look in your eyes. You hated the fact that I defied you and I was no longer under your control. I began to fight back. I had an opinion and I voiced it. But you found ways to try to ruin my day. Case in point, my wedding day. You had to be the center of attention and act like an ass in front of my future in laws, so much so that my mother took you outside and yelled at you. That was fine. You just proved my point and my mother began to realize who you really are. I have nothing but happy memories of my husband's big smile when the officer of the court announced we were married.
I remember laughing when we found out about Mom's affair. It was wonderful, in a sense. The fact that you didn't see it coming baffles me. You with your rules, demands, and conditions for love. Finally, she became just as fed up as we were. That was a great day. You were blindsided. How could someone like my mother, from her background DARE cheating on someone like you? At first, I felt bad for you. No one deserves that. Cheating is not okay. But then, you turned into a raving lunatic. The harassment began. The drunken calls at three am telling me that you were going on a plane to Europe to “beat the shit out of that stealing bastard.” The drunken calls at two am with my little brother in the back seat of the car, listening as you berated our “whore of a mother” on your way home from the bar. Every day. Every damn day. If I turned my phone off, I would be met with a barrage of missed calls and voice mail after voice mail, each one angrier than the last, asking me where I was, what I was doing. Was I talking to my mother? If I was, what did she say? Was I avoiding him? Was I turning on him? Why was my phone off? Why is your phone off? Why is your phone off? Why is your phone off? Why....is...you...phone...off???!! Callmecallmecallmecallmenow!
Eventually, there was an ultimatum. You or my mother. I couldn't have both. I was either on your side or her side. Were you seriously that surprised when I chose my mother? Since I was no longer on “your” side, I became an enemy that needed to be conquered and silenced. I had too much information against you for the custody case. One by one your turned your family against me with lies and set them loose like rabid dogs. You almost succeeded. Three months living with Mr. Cuervo almost silenced me. Almost. But you forgot to take into consideration my trump card, my husband and protector.
The next couple of years passed and we began to recover from your emotional trauma. We accepted Mom's boyfriend, who is now our step-father. You see how happy we all are and you can't stand it, so you try stupid and petty things to break through our shell. It will never work. You can't reach us. Nothing you do or say can ever reach us.
I'm told you and your fiancee are no longer together. Same mistakes. Same arguments. Except this time you are seeking the advice of the very people you hurt. You actually may be listening to everything my mother has to say. Good for you. Know this, the only reason she is tolerating you is for the sake of keeping the peace That is is. Nothing more. I'm also told that you are going to church. You re-found Jesus and Jesus is showing you how horrible of a person you really are. That is great. Again, good for you.
But you did you honestly ask my mother if I would accept an apology from you because you want to go back to the way things were and be a family again? You think we are going to be a family again? That's precious. We were never a family. I'm quite happy with the family I have. The one that doesn't include you. So you can take you apology elsewhere. I will have none of it. I want nothing from you. You want my forgiveness so you can feel better about yourself and get an easy passage to your afterlife. Well, be prepared to wait. Forgiveness is for saints and Christians and I'm neither. Maybe I'm a vindictive bitch. At least I'm upfront about it and accept that fact about myself. I don't hide behind a mask of humility and humbleness for public appearance.
So here's the thing, you can pretend all you want. Pretend that you fit in, pretend that is all okay. Just know that is all you are going to get. You are not our friend. You do not belong in our family. You are not going to manipulate yourself in. You are an interloper. Go find your own family. Oh yeah, you tried that and failed. You have no concept of what family is. Go learn that definition.
In closing, in the immortal words of Richard Pryor, as quoted by Eddie Murphy:
Have a Coke, and a smile, and shut the fuck up.
Get out of my life.
Done With Your Shit