I spend a lot of time writing about troubles in the world and I get heated sometimes depending on what subject is. Sometimes I lose track of the good things and especially the good people who reside here too. I think I will spend some time writing about the good in the world. One blog for each good person whom is now or was in my life. This one starts it off with the best man in the world whom I have ever known. This one is about my partner for life.
As some of you may know, my life did not start off in a very good way and because of the way I was treated and what I saw. I learned very early that love and trust were just words with no real meaning. I believed that for many years. I spent a lot of time wondering if I would ever find someone who could love me for who I was. I felt like I was the worst person in the world and not worthy of love.
I had tried many times to end my life by the time I was 14. No one understood the hell my home was. On the outside our family appeared happy but no one knew what happened when the only people left with my father and later step father, were the ones who were also the most terrified of them. When I was 14 I tried to take my life again because my mom had said that she was going back to my step father who had been abusing me for years. There was a court order in place to prevent him from living with us but somehow no one bothered to ensure that it was being enforced and that the kids in the home were being protected. When my mother told me they were staying together and I was once again told to be quiet about what my mother deemed “lying” about what happened, I went into the darkness once again fully expecting not to get out of it. I remember hearing my step father’s voice and feeling a very real anxiety build with each word. I once again tried to self harm and this time there was no doubting what I had hoped to achieve. This time I wanted someone to hear me and see me. I wanted them to see the pain. This time…it worked.
A social worker came to the house and once again mom lied and said her husband was not in the home. The social worker never spoke to me but my younger siblings had all been explained to tell the same story of her husband not being in the home. I tried to tell the worker that he was living there but she didn’t seem interested. Her solution was to send me to summer camp. That’s right. Summer camp. Before I go any further let me just say that as odd as the decision might seem, this was the best decision anyone had ever made on my behalf.
Social services bought all my gear for camp and then to the boat we drove for the 2 hour ensuing boat ride. Having just moved to the coast, I had never seen such a big body of water and to be honest I was just a little terrified. It was cool to see the Orca’s in their natural environment though.
On the boat ride I kept to myself an hung onto the one thing which had kept me sane throughout the years, my guitar. I closed my eyes and tried desperately not to throw up. Lightweight right? lol I really didn’t feel like talking to anyone so I sat in a corner at the quiet end of the boat. Almost two hours later the captain announced that we had reached our destination and that we needed to prepare to disembark.
The boat docked, we left the boat and picked up our luggage then headed to the field straight ahead. I didn’t realize how many kids were there or how young some seemed to be. I was a little over 14 and this was my first camping experience with others. I wondered how they could look so calm at their age when I was terrified. lol We were assigned cabin groups and then we trudged off fully loaded down with our gear. My cabin was was the heck up the side of this very steep hill. Apparently the older girls and boys were kept a little more separate to give them a different experience.
Once I got into the cabin I had no choice but to socialize a bit and I did just the bare minimum. With the amount of times our family moved, I never had friends for longer than a few months. Making friends was not my strong point. After a few days we were all promising to be best friends and sisters for the rest of our lives. No surprise most of us probably don’t remember the names let alone the reasons why we trusted each other.
As part of the camp experience there were many activities for everyone. Some activities were group and others were shared with others our own age or maybe with the opposite sex. Nothing bad of course. A lot of things like going on out trips which were trips leaving the camp and going into the bush or a little island on the Pacific Ocean. One activity caught my attention and that was the talent night where the cabin groups did skits,sang or did a talent. Since I had a guitar, the girls in my group suggested I sing that night. Up until this point I had been involved in the music industry a fair bit performing in public but none of them knew this or that I wrote songs. I agreed to perform and to write a song. It was while I was righting the song on the beach near the docks, that this young dorky guy approached me with what appeared to be some sort of snake. He called out to me, “Hey wanna see my snake?” I kind of laughed a little and said, “Sure kid be right there.” I put my guitar down and went over. He reached out and asked me to touch the snake. My immediate thought was wow this kid is strange. lol I did it anyway. He began to laugh and said, “Ha hahahaha the snake just peed on you.” If I didn’t think it before, I was sure now that this kid was really weird. I shook my head, walked to the water’s edge, dipped my hands in and washed off whatever it was. Back to my guitar and the memory of the whole thing was gone in a flash.
Later at the talent night I was called up to do my song and I still remember it was about outer space and how we are all drifting away. I’m definitely no Slash but I could play well enough to write. I sang for all of three minutes or so and rose to a resounding round of applause. I felt my cheeks go red and I walked off the stage after saying thanks. It wasn’t until days later that I realized just how important that song was to a certain someone.
A couple of days later our cabin group and the same age group of boys, left on an out trip for an island a little off shore and a good two hours of solid paddling. I remember being in a canoe with a bunch of girls when we saw the ferry off in the distance. The boys counsellor had a twisted sense of humour an dhe shouted out that the waves were going to suck our boats in and capsize them. The girls and some of the boys started screaming and paddling faster. I stayed calm and smiled because I sensed this was not the first time that line had been used.
We safely reached the little island which really was nothing more than a large rock in the middle of nowhere. We brought our stuff on shore and began to set up our lean to’s and gather wood for fire. The boys and the girls were pretty close so now I realized that the same boy with the snake was here on the island. I noticed him looking at me but kept busy. I was off finding fire wood and there he was again. This time in place of a snake he carried an apple. Hmmm that is kind of funny now that I think about that. You know this is the very first time I have put those two together. lol He approached me and asked me if I would sing for him again. He had heard me sing my song at the talent night. I blushed a little. Seemed odd but hey I was a little hungry. I said, “Sure, I’ll sing for you.” Out came the guitar and the song started again. Our little tete de tete was broken up by the boys counsellor calling for him. Apparently they thought something had happened to him. On this little rock…lol he left and we didn’t see each other again until the day we left.
On the day our boat was leaving to go back home, we were given little autograph booklets to get names and numbers basically. I remember the books were red and multi colored papers inside. I signed quite a few good byes that day but one stuck out. The boy came to me and asked me to sign his book. I wrote, “I don’t love you now, but someday I will.” Wow right? Well the story didn’t end there.
We went our separate ways and almost a year later we met up again. This time I was performing for the Variety Club Telethon. I spotted him and his friend. He spotted me and my friend. I liked his friend and my friend thought he was pretty cute. Long story short….this boy and I were asked to leave the building due to kissing which was not very accepted at that time. He took me home on the bus and we have been together ever since.
We married when I was 18 and he was 17. Was it easy? Of course not. Nothing ever is but even through every joy and pain, he has stuck with me and loved me enough to help me learn to love myself. It took me many years to learn to trust him and love him. I’m glad it happened. One day, out of the blue, we had been talking and suddenly I burst into tears. “Did I hurt you?” He asked. “No. I just realized that I love you and that I trust you.” He held me and let me cry it out, never telling me that I was insane. He’s held me many times while I cried whether from joy or pain. He’s held me when I didn’t think anyone could. He held me and showed me that love does not always hurt and yes there are indeed good men in the world.
33 years as a couple. 30 years married. 3 children. 4 and 1/2 grandchildren. Love is good. No matter where my life may have started, I know where my life will always be. No one can tear us apart and no words of hate will ever make me doubt who I am or what I stand for because after all if he can accept me for everything I am, then I do too. Thank you to the most wonderful man I have ever known. xxx