If you have just come here, this is a continuing biography and you really need to read Parts One and Two first.

When I was 15 I met this guy who I will just refer to as A.  I was introduced to him by my mother.  This should have been a huge red light.  He was 18 and the son of a friend of my mothers.  Now, this friend of my mother was just as bat-shit insane as my mother, and they had met at work.  She was hell bent that I got to know this guy for whatever reasons.  I didn’t want to and I remember the conversation.

“I have homework to do.”

“Since when do you do homework”

“Since now.”

Yea, I was that kind of student that didn’t need to study to pull A’s and B’s.  If I had actually applied myself in school it would have been scary.

So, I had to meet this guy.  Was not on the top of the list of things I wanted to do but it happened and somewhere along the way we started dating.  Yea, it’s funny how things happen and all but here’s the thing.  Given my dysfunctional family and lack of anything normal in my life I had no idea what a healthy relationship was, and this wasn’t one.  He didn’t like my friends.  He didn’t like how I dressed or acted.  At some point he told me that I was an embarrassment to him.  I have no idea what he expected me to be but I wasn’t it.  He liked to play mind games.  He lied to me about so much in the name of mind games that I have no idea to this day what was the truth and what wasn’t.  He was emotionally and mentally abusive and I didn’t recognize it.  I was also afraid that if I broke up with him, no one else would want me.  He was willing to put up with the insanity of my family when others weren’t and that was the only thing that really mattered at the time.  That was the worst thought train I have ever had.  Dating him was the worst decision I ever made.  I wasted seven years of my life.  The worst part was, my lifeguard met him and told me he was an asshole and I didn’t listen.  To this day I kick myself for that.

When I left home I moved in with A.  The next three years or so were horrible.  It was an on again off again relationship because I sucked.  He was mad if I spent time with my friends.  He was pissed if I didn’t have dinner on the table when he came home from work.  I often chose to work double shifts in fast food hell rather than be around him.  When I was working he would come to where I worked to make sure I was there and not off with someone, anyone.

At work I made a really awesome friend, G.  She was years older than me, had a daughter, wasn’t living up to the standards her family thought she should and tried to instill some culture into me.  She is the one person that actually pointed out that this was an unhealthy relationship and why instead of attacking A and not explaining.  She is actually the person who introduced me to my husband.  When the relationship with A finally reached nuclear proportions I lived with her briefly.

When I say nuclear proportions I am probably making an understatement.  I was 21 years old and in an abusive relationship that I was rebelling against.  Fights would break out if I as much went to the library.  At one point we were living in his grandmothers old house out in the country.  I didn’t drive and he wasn’t willing to make any sort of compromise where I could even work.  He rigged the phone where I couldn’t call anyone.  He also disabled certain TV stations where I couldn’t watch them. Every day after work his mom would call the second he walked in the house.  If his mother said jump he said how high.  He really had mommy issues and they were more apparent than ever.

I was mowing the grass and when I parked the riding lawn mower, that he was given and fixed and really shouldn’t have been fixed, but he was too stingy with his money that he just wanted to let pile up in the bank to actually buy something, it caught fire.  I had to run to the neighbors house two doors down, and that took a good five to ten minutes at least, because the phone was rigged where no one could call out without a little chip that he carried around with him.  By time I got the fire department out the barn/garage had burned down with his precious custom truck in.  I remember him showing up from work with his mom…no idea how they found out…but the first thing she said to him was he was never going to be able to have anything with me around.

After this that and the other he said we would have to move out and he was going home with his mom because more than likely the well water was contaminated due to the garage spouts being connected to the system.  It seemed logical and I went to live with G.  At some point I ended up back at the house with him for a few weeks and then it happened.  The relationship came to an end with him holding a gun to my head.  I don’t remember what led to it all, I remember mouthing off and telling him that the only reason he was with me was because he couldn’t sleep with his mother.  I was sure that I was going to die and no one would know.  My family never talked to me.  I had pretty much been disowned and blamed for my mother’s breakdown and suicide attempt a few months after I left home.  Basically she didn’t have a built in babysitter and she couldn’t take not being about to go out drinking and whoring.

The only thing that brought me any sort of comfort was remembering one particular summer day where me and lifeguard were sitting on the dock next to the lake at the campground and talking for hours.  It was just that kind of day where everything was perfect and you never wanted it to end.  I remember one of the other lifeguards telling him that she didn’t bother us because we looked so peaceful.  That is my happy place, even today.

I don’t know how I got out of everything alive but I went to live with G.  When I returned to the house to get my stuff, I discovered that A had turned it all into a bonfire.  Everything I owned including most of my clothes.

I had to start over and I had no idea how I was going to do it.