WordPress was giving me trouble, so I moved over to here: http://tendemerits.blogspot.com/
For some reason, my dad decided to take my mom away from Georgia and go live in the woods. I think it might’ve had something to do with getting her away from any family that could help support her, but I haven’t ruled out the possibility that he was running away from his mistresses. Or the FBI. He’s done some pretty shady stuff. But anyway, he took us out to the backwoods of Montana, where I ended up growing up.
For most of my life, we had very little contact with the outside world, other than the occasional trips into town. I’m not even sure that counts, honestly. The town was a bit like a Twilight Zone episode; tiny, isolated, and nothing ever changed. We grew up with no electricity, and therefore no phones or televisions. For a good while (until we set up some water barrels and put in our own pipes) we had no running water, and had to use an outhouse. Which isn’t actually all that bad, until you start thinking about spiders and packrats and all the other creepy crawlies that could be thinking about chomping down on you. Especially in the middle of the night.
Also, kerosene lamps. I still miss the smell.
We never had much money. At all. One year we ended up hunting and relying on our garden for food. I never even knew we were poor. Everyone in that area was.
While all this probably sounds like I’m complaining, I loved growing up like that. If I had a sane dad, it might’ve been close to perfect.
Except for winters. Winters were always difficult.
So, I have a pretty big family, mainly due to my dad acting like he’s on a one-man mission to impregnate almost every woman on Earth.
Half Siblings (that I know of)
Other than Dustin, we all have the same dad, but I haven’t met all of my siblings. Lucas and Elijah I was raised with, and Joel and Dustin were occasionally present, but the rest I have little to no contact with. For the most part, I don’t even think about them other than to do a quick mental check on whether I’m related to somebody I just met or do a headcount on how many siblings I have when I’m asked.
Sometimes I don’t even bother to include them in the count because it’s a bit difficult to explain how we’re related without having a flowchart handy.
If you were to look through a crowd and pick out the person with a completely hellish home life, it probably wouldn’t be me. Chances are, I wouldn’t stand out at all. I’m just another person walking down the street, just another person shopping at the store.
And I’m happy with that. It means I’ve done something right in moving on.
If you can’t guess that my father was emotionally and physically abusive, I’ve won another little battle. If you can’t guess that I’ve had more stepmothers than Mary Tudor, it’s just another thing for me to smile about.
Of course, it seems a bit silly to be going on about how happy I am that you don’t know these things while blogging about it. Counter-intuitive, even. But I have a reason for it, and it’s not because I enjoy being dramatic (but that is a hobby of mine): it’s because I’ve reached a point where I’m tired of keeping all these stories bundled up inside, and an anonymous blog seemed like a good idea. In all honesty, some of the crap my father put my family through was a bit amusing, in a laughing-at-the-lightning sort of way.
Also, my therapist recommended it.