Today I am writing to you about some of the thoughts that have been inside of me for a long time. I have a place to put them now. This place is more public, but if I can help even one person, then it is worth it. I also have my own private blog that is mine alone. I allow just a few of my most trusted friends to read it because it comes from my heart and soul.
This blog also comes from my soul but it is mostly about the things that I’ve been through. Mostly, because I wanted someone else to know, if they’ve gone through anything similar; that they are OK and I know that I am OK, too. It’s not that I want to “beat a dead horse”. It’s not that I want to live in the past or continue to write and rewrite the same old …same old things all of the time. NO…I want to put down some of my troubling memories, but not the worst, most troubling ones; because those belong to me and my private blog and not here on a web page for the world to see.
I’m remembering a day when I was about 13 years old. It was cold outside and I had asked my mother if I could go ice skating with a girlfriend. She had a car of her own, my mother did. But she never would drive us anyplace 99% of the time. We were all 3 signed up for “day camp” many Summers in a row while growing up. It was from about 9:00 am until about 3:00 pm. My mother wouldn’t and didn’t drive us. No…instead you could see the 3 of us kids all on one bicycle going down the street about 14 blocks or up to about a mile to the YMCA where day camp was being held. Yes, Steve was the oldest and he was the navigator or the driver of the bike. I was usually on the back holding onto Steve around the waist OR sitting on the handle bars. David, my middle brother was either on the bike with the other 2 of us, or he would sometimes walk or ride his own bike.
That’s not a bad memory though. I enjoyed those trips on the bicycle with my big brother. So back to the day that I asked mom to go ice skating with a friend. I had a ride already lined up and didn’t need that. I had my own ice skates and I think it was about 1.50 to go skating or maybe it was free? I cannot totally remember that part. So I asked if I could go and mom said “no”! I said to her, in the snotty 13-year-old way “well, I’m going to call Daddy and ask HIM then!” When I proceeded to pick up the telephone, my mother grabbed the phone from me and started pounding me with the receiver of those old-fashioned ringing telephones! Oh NO…it was not a “smart phone” or a “cell phone” or even a “cellular or cordless” phone! It was a big black receiver and wall mounted phone. She cracked me on the left elbow and I heard a “CRACK” and it hurt like blazes! I started to cry and instead of asking me if I was OK or asking me what was wrong, my mom started chasing me down to my bedroom with her fists clenched and punching me in the head all the way as I covered my face!
I got into my bedroom, I heard my biggest brother, Steve, yell to me “cover your temples! Cover your Temples”! I was in my room and crouched down behind my bedroom door in the fetal position. I had my 13 year old, all of 80 lbs body, squished up against the door trying with all of my might to keep it closed. My mother got into one of her “rages” and just continued to punch me and punch me in the head, temples, neck, face and then my lip split. I felt like the “lights were going out”. I felt like I was in a “nightmare”. I felt like I was going to DIE! What did I do so bad to deserve this, I thought to myself??
In the background, I could still hear my mother yelling to my brothers to “keep the doors locked”…and “don’t let her out of this house”! Finally, for some reason…maybe because my elbow was swollen to the size of a baseball bat and purple and I was continuing to cry out in pain, my oldest brother finally unlocked the door to the front of the house. I ran out as fast as I could and went to the lady across the street’s house. This was an Italian lady, Betty and her husband, Mario who lived across the street from us and I used to babysit for their three young daughters!
I knocked on the door and she let me come in. She told me or allowed me to call my dad at work. I told him what happened and he came home to take me to the hospital because we thought my arm may be broken. He came to get me at Betty’s house. He drove me to the hospital. All the way to St. Mary’s of Redford, MI hospital; he told me these things: “If anyone at the hospital asks you what happened, you tell them that you FELL DOWN THE STAIRS!” He told me that if I told them what “really happened”..that my “Mother would go to jail, our family would be split up, I would go to Foster care and be separated from all of them and get raped in my foster home and it would be much worse for me there.” He told me that my mom “was sick and it wasn’t her fault”…he said that “she would go to jail and it would then be ALL MY FAULT and she would get sicker and die there because of me and I’d never see any of them again!”
We arrived at the emergency room. I was half crying from pain and half crying from anger because I wasn’t allowed to tell anyone what really happened and I was so angry with my mother, I wanted to tell the world what she did to me! We got into the X-ray room and not one Dr. or nurse or hospital personnel asked ME what happened to my arm and my lip!!! My father just told them that I “fell down the stairs” and they took it as the Bible’s truth.
So badly, I wanted someone to care or someone to ask ME what had really happened. But…would I have been too afraid to tell? I certainly wanted my mom to go to jail and suffer for awhile….but did I?? I just accepted all of this for what it was…just another day at the “Moody” household.
The Dr.’s, by the way, said that my left elbow had been fractured! He showed me and my dad the Xray and the line in the bone. I saw the crack in my left elbow bone with my own eyes!! They gave me a sling because you cannot cast an elbow! They said to “go home, lay down and put ice on it”. We went home and my dad told me to “stay away from your mother, she’s mad at you right now”….We got into the house and do you know she NEVER said she was “sorry”!!! (She said it on her death-bed! She told me she was “sorry and she loved me infinity!!” Just before she stopped being able to speak…as she was dying of colon cancer in 2002/December 22nd).
When we arrived home, my dad told me to go and lie down on my brother, Steve’s bed. Steve didn’t ever mind if I watched the T.V. in his bed and in my brother’s shared bedroom. They had a small 13″ TV and when nobody was in the room, using it, I was allowed to go in and watch the TV because my parents always had the control over whatever was on the tube, of course; in those days especially. So,…my dad brought me some ice and we put it on my arm/elbow which was very sore and swollen. I watched TV for awhile with the ice packs on my elbow and then went to bed. I wasn’t allowed to tell anyone or talk about it again…
Oh…the stories I have to tell you…they will curl your hair…or maybe straighten it if it is curled! LOL…but…this is the 100% total truth, I promise you this. I still loved my mother and always will. She’s been dead now since Dec 22, 2002. I am treated horribly by my father and 2 brothers especially since mom died. They “HATE” me with a passion. They think I didn’t care about her cancer or her chemo-therapy treatments. That’s not true! Whenever I asked my parents “Where are you going to be for your treatment” or for whatever medical issue at hand was…my parents, especially my mom, would order me “NOT TO COME AROUND”! When she was inpatient at the University of Michigan one time, I went to go and visit her. She had Pneumonia and was ill. So I went against their orders and showed up at the hospital to visit. Unknowingly,both of my brothers were there visiting, but I was told that I “wasn’t allowed to come”!!! I went anyways and they didn’t like it at all! They were angry that I showed up and I had wanted to show support for my sick mother too!
So..when she had found out that she had cancer in her colon in 2001, September; I put all things aside and went to her. I stayed with her all day at the hospital on the day of her surgery! I stayed by her side the whole day and even a 2 hour period of time when they ONLY allowed ME and nobody else in the room with her! Isn’t that strange? They said “No men allowed!” Somehow I think my mom wanted just her and me to be alone for a while and not have the boys and my dad interfere like they always did! So maybe I think she told the nurses to make that rule up on that day of her surgery! During the pre-surgery experience, I was at her side in a room for about 2 hours. We talked about everything under the sun! We had a nice talk for once and it was easy-going and no yelling or hitting or name calling. I was as loving as I could be and tried to forgive and “forget” all the things in the past. I wanted to be there for my mother, who I loved, no matter what happened in the past!
That whole day at the hospital, my father and 2 brothers, and one of my mother’s sisters’ (who showed up a bit later), were there with me in the waiting room. As we waited for my mother to get out of surgery, they treated me horribly. I wanted to “run” and I wanted my husband, but he was home watching my 2 daughters! I was alone and no one was on “My side”. I was the most “poor” of the people in that waiting room; though my Aunt M. proceeded to grab MY cell phone and started to call her sister in Howell, MI and talk on my minutes! I was furious because she never asked me! She didn’t take my “rich” brother’s phone, or my dad’s phone…she just grabbed mine because I was an “easy mark”…easy to “pick on”!!
We had to go down to eat because time was ticking on. I dreaded that part of the day because I was always being called names for being “fat” (even though I was never fat). If you read the prior blog notes of this or possibly one of my other blogs, you’ll remember that growing up in our home, I was weighed weekly and given gifts for losing weight and punished for gaining anything! It was awful and I was always being teased for my body, my weight, food choices, eating habits and anything and everything possible! We went to the hospital cafeteria. My big brother, S. made some rude comments about “why don’t you eat some Ranch dressing???” My dad told me “why don’t you eat some french fries?” (This..the same man who always told me that I was NOT allowed to eat french fries because I was “fat”!!)..the middle brother, D., was eating a chilli dog and chilli fries as he rubbed his stomach like “Buddha” he said..and told me “MMMM I’m eating all of this junk food and loving all of it!! Yum…Yum…I am eating french fries and chilli dogs and I love every bite”!!! They were just torturing me and being cruel.
Then my brother, S. had said so much about me not eating, that I finally ate a salad and he still made remarks about the salad! Then because I needed to have some kind of “control” afterwards, I went into the bathroom and I vomited! I did not do it on purpose, it happened due to my nerves that day and the things that were said and how I felt inside…it was definitely psychological but not totally intentional!
We went back and my mom was out of surgery! YAY!!! They said they “got all of the cancer” and they told us that “it was not in her liver but they did a biopsy anyways!” Later we found out that it had gone to her liver but at that point we were happy and thought she might be OK.
After her surgery, I tried and tried to go over there with my little family. My daughters, my husband and I. We tried to visit and bring mom flowers and do nice things and send cards and show her that we loved her and cared. But time and time again, things kept getting said and I was being constantly, verbally abused and psychologically abused. It was horrible and it started coming out in other ways throughout my poor body. I was losing weight and losing weight and I couldn’t eat. I couldn’t hold any food down and I was getting ill. I tried and tried to keep up a relationship with my parents but then after things continued to be said over and over again to me in front of my girls etc. I had to protect us all from that; and protect my girls ….and myself…and my husband!
There’s so much more…I will tell you more next time…but for now…just please know..that before my mom died, I was with her for the 10 days in the hospital. I found someone to drive me because I was in a wheelchair and it was following our car accident. I was in horrible pain and horrid shape. I needed 5 surgeries and a pacemaker. My mother was dying and when I fainted, my father and brothers called me a “fake”..even though several Dr’s and nurses came to my aid and told me that I should “go to the ER because my heart was having arrhythmia’s”; my BP was 70/40 and my HR was only in the 20’s!
Within 2 months time after my mother’s death on December 22, 2002; I had to have a dual chamber pacemaker implanted on Feb 21, 2003. I had fainted at Physical therapy and my BP and HR were both still dangerously low. I got taken to the nearest smaller hospital first and was stabilized. We had to wait a few hours there for an ambulance that was equipped with a heart monitor to come and take me to the main hospital where my Cardiologist then met us there and they hooked me up to all kind of machines right away! I was monitored over night in the CCU. The Dr’s came to see me early in the morning to tell me that my heart had many arrhythmia’s throughout the night and my heart stopped briefly, and started. My heart showed 3 out of the 4 valves were prolapsed and had some regurgitation. The pulmonary valve showed some slight pulmonary Hypertension. I was told also that I had “Long QT lines on and off and Sick Sinus node Syndrome. Well…long story short..I am guessing that I wasn’t “faking’ as my father and brothers were spreading for news of their day!
I wanted to add a short end note…to the ending of today’s blog. I was in a wheelchair and my husband is an elementary school teacher, so he could not drive me daily to see my mother, but he did take me in the evenings. I found friend after friend, to take me to the hospital to see my mom as she was dying during those last 10 days to 2 weeks. I was physically unable to drive also. Day after day, my dad and my brothers treated me horribly, rudely, verbally,emotionally and psychologically abusively! I went with my head held as high as I could hold it with all of the chronic intractable pain that I was in. You see, this was December 2002 and our MVA was August 2002. It was 4 months later but I was in horrible nerve pain with multiple injuries to both shoulders (which were due to have surgery soon afterwards), to my neck with multiple herniated/ruptured and bulging discs, along with my lumbar spine with a number of herniated, bulging and ruptured but inoperable discs. Also both knees were torn and injured, also needing surgeries. I just had too many injuries to write them all here and bore you with it all! But I made it to see my mother despite all of this and despite the MTBI that I suffered from and still suffer with today!
My mother and I made peace before she died. I talked with her. She apologized, and I knew what she meant. I told her “it is OK mom, you had a hard life and I love you and I forgive you”! She told me that she “loved me infinity”! That made me feel good and she told my daughters that she loved them “infinity” also.
A few days later, my mother died.She died at about 4:00 am on December 22, 2002. But I was not called about her death until about 9:30 am; some 5.5 hours AFTER she had passed away. I didn’t get a chance to say “goodbye”. Because my father and brothers insisted on leaving me “OUT” and the three of them got to see her and say “goodbye” before her body was taken to the Crematorium to be cremated. She was dead and gone and already her body was turned to “ashes” before I got to even find out about her death. I am or was her daughter. Her only daughter and I loved my mom even though we had a tumultuous past and a history of abuse; at the end of the day, she was still my mother.
When I found out that they didn’t even call me until 5.5 hours after she was dead, gone and cremated; I was furious. The anger turned to tears and I at least wanted to spend the day that our mother died together with my brothers and my dad. Yes, they’ve been horribly abusive towards me in my lifetime. But during times such as that, you put those things and all things aside and you just console each other and try to get through it. No matter what, they were still my father and brothers and I thought we should have been together if not for just that one day!
My dad got on the phone and told me “NO”! Yep…he told me, “NO”!!! He said that my girls and I or even more importantly “we”….”we could not come over to his/their house (*my parents home) and mourn with my father & brothers together, as a family, on the day that his wife and our mother died. I was devastated that they had to “hurt” me even more by not telling me she had passed away until after the body was gone for hours and hours. Luckily, my daughters and I had my wonderful, loving and kind, husband, C. He consoled us that day and for the days following.
After being married to my mother for 50 years, and after carrying around in a “purse/pouch” for several months just after she died what he explained was over 400 cards and letters from all of their “friends” to cheer my mother. He obsessively carried those cards around in a cloth bag. They always bragged about “how many people loved them and thought they were wonderful people” (my mom especially) and it must have done something for them to carry these around. I’m pretty sure that 90% of them were from my older two brothers and my ex sister in law! LOL.. I guess carrying them made them seem more “true” to my parents.
Just a few months after my mother passed away, and after my dad had built a “shrine” for mom and her ashes urn, in “her” bedroom, in their house; my dad met someone. He married “N.” within a few months. They were only married a year or so and during a short visit to my home, “N” asked me a question when she got me alone. When my dad wasn’t around for a few moments, she said “something terrible happened in your family, didn’t it?” She said she could “feel” it. I didn’t want my dad to hurt me or hate me more or treat me any worse, so I just told her that she needed to ask my dad that question, not me. The she proceeded to ask me if she and her daughter should be afraid of my brother, “D.”…to that I said “YES…you should be afraid, be very afraid. I know that I am! ” I’m not sure why she asked me these things and then went ahead and got married anyways?? But she did and my dad tossed my moms ashes into the Lake that they visited and got rid of the “shrine” he’d made for her. He also started to tell everyone who would listen, “How terrible my mother was”…how “terrible she treated him”, “How awful the things she’d say to him were and so demeaning”. He painted her first like a “Saint” when she was alive, trying to NOT let anyone get a glimpse of our/their “REAL’ life! Then suddenly when he met and then married “N.”, my mom was suddenly a piece of “crap“(his sentiments, not mine) and she “never treated him nice and called him horrible names”….he also told “N.” in front of me and my husband and other people too, I’m sure; that “no one has ever loved him like “N.” does (or “did”). Then he tossed those cards either into the recycle bin, garbage or out into the water along with my mothers’ ashes. Now it’s as though she never was…but I know better. I keep her spirit alive in me and my prayers and I talk to her more now than I ever did in the past.
I’ve copied and posted the letter that I received from my fathers’ now ex-wife “N”. I just wanted to make sure you see it. Mostly, it just states that she “always believed me and when she tried to stick up for me, my dad and brother, Steve especially, would be angry and treat her verbally bad and emotionally abusive!!
There’s so much…this is what I was thinking about today. I was just going to write about my elbow..but then I remembered all of this stuff and it all came pouring out. It’s good for me even if it comes our more than one time…thank you for your patience and for reading my story…Suzanne