I was in the early stages of my pregnancy when in my childhood home discovered my mother dead on the kitchen floor from a single gunshot to the head. My father dead in the bedroom a self-inflicted bullet to his forehead. I was unable to move past the recording in my mind “if only I had returned an hour earlier, I could have saved her.”
With my new marriage already in trouble prior to the tragedy I had already secured the services of a divorce lawyer. The person to whom I married was among other issues writing bad checks all over town, including the restaurant where we had our wedding reception. The owners were friends of mine and did not press charges in the matter for several months. After the funeral, I decided God must have had some reason to spare my life as documentation would show my father had planned on taking my life with my mother’s that night.
I did not realize it then, but I do now. I allowed the familiar fear and repetitive criticism of my abusive father from the ashes of the earth to play a major role in my adult life. I did not know how to change the messages on my victim tape, etched in my spirit from the moment I came out of the birth canal.
Maintaining the Teflon imagine in public was easy as long as I did not discuss my married life, including the court and custody battle. I could count on one hand how many people even knew I had a child after the divorce. Keeping women and children safe became a twenty-four hour, seven days a week job. It did not lessen the pain of my child being gone, it just kept my mind occupied.
As I forged ahead trying to fight the legal system for my son, I knew it was lost before it began. The tactics used by my child’s father were stronger than me. In 2005, when I released my second book the father of my child sent letters with court documents via fax to people in the media and places where I was scheduled at stores for book signings. The words he wrote and sent are not worth reprinting. His actions spoke volumes as to his level of pure anger over any accomplishment that excluded him. Winning full custody of my child was not enough, he wanted me to continue to fear the hold he once had over me. This stunt one of several was done in an effort to discredit me and affect my livelihood.
Now as I am about to release two new books, once again, my child’s father sneaks in illegally and without my knowledge submits forged documents to have the case file from 1993 re-opened. The sealed court documents are now open to the public as I discussed in Fridays post.
By disabling secrets we release in us the power to move forward and create positive change.
In 1996, in a dedication to my child in my first book “Defending Our lives” I wrote: “And finally, to my precious gift of love and joy, my child. It is for you that I have written this book. It is my hope that someday you understand that I wanted the world to be a better place.”