Chapter 7 The Wall

There comes a time during the moments of change. Almost all self-help or personal development books, the journey leads to a place to overcome. I know that I have been to this place many times. I call this the wall.

The wall is a place for me that has huge signs of DO NOT ENTER! DANGER DANGER! That wall is a place of things that I don’t want to encounter ever again. I have lied to myself over and over that I don’t need to ever look over that wall ever again. Much less break it wide open all over again. F that noise. That was my exact thoughts about The Wall.

Envision the great brick wall that seems so tall and wide. That is where I kept all my shame and guilt. All the burning desires of anything that I thought was wrong and bad. Every bad thought I have ever had, every bad thing I have ever said. You name it, it went there. To me it was massive. Every bad thing that ever happen to me that I blamed myself for, went in there. So to me when the books told me to confront the things in my past that were holding me back, I envisioned me looking up at this huge brick wall then looking down in despair. I made a choice to try to go around it. I refused to revisit that place ever again. I did this for many years.

So there is a moment for me when I built this wall. I was fifteen. I had already experienced my virtue taken from me and now feeling alone. There were many guys that have ” tried,” to get in my pants as a result of this news in the tiny town I lived in. I started my freshman year that year and I met a young man my age. I didn’t think of sex like my peers did, I could care less really. He was a virgin it made it safe for me. He was scared but curious and I didn’t care. We ended up having sex, and I ended up pregnant right before summer vacation. Oh lucky me.

Sex was awkward for me to be honest. All I could think about was hurry up I feel gross. I really didn’t want to have sex. I was like reliving the trauma all over again. In fact I would stop and push him off me. I hate it. The whole darn thing. So when I got pregnant talk about a shocker. I was with my Dad and I happened to have been bucked off my horse that summer during a poker ride, and ended up needing to go to the doctor. Little did I know that my dad suspected so much more when he took me. I was sleeping more than normal. I was sleeping in the car which I never have done in my life. Showers were painful. I did tell my dad that as well. I could tell my dad anything.

So when the doctor came in she told me the news,”you hurt your back and you’re pregnant. Do you want to tell your father or would you like me too?” Whoa!  That is a lot to take in. I told her to tell my father for me and I walked out. I walked past my dad and said she wants to talk to you, and I waited in the truck. I was trying to process everything that was just told me and what was going to be told to my father. OH MY GOD!!! He is going to be so disappointed in me. He’s walking to the car…. Keep it together Kristal.

He hops into the car, and as happy as he could. “My baby is having a baby.” I lost it! I start crying and saying sorry over and over. Like it was going to change my fate in any way. He then has this bright idea that he needs to tell my mom. That was the first time I ever cursed at my dad. “Are you F-ing crazy?! She will kill us both!!” He laughed it off like I was joking! This man is insane. What the heck am I going to do, and my dad is to kind to me to tell me what he is really thinking. I am a royal screw up. A+ for me on this. In all fairness though it’s not like I was educated in real life situations to handle such things. Sure I passed health class with an A but how do I talk to my parents about this sort of thing. My sister was the one who was experienced in this arena of life, and I am not telling her crap anymore. I vowed at this point that I would not do the same thing with my kids. I would make it a safe place to ask for the things that they need in these situations before there is a baby on the way.

So I am thinking of everything and anything all at the same time, and I just want to eat my emotions. Pizza it is. I make my dad take me to pizza hut in Hillsboro OR. I sat there quietly, and my dad is encouraging me to talk. I am just sick about the whole thing. The guy in the matter was the last thing on my mind. I was overwhelmed, full of pizza and exhausted. My dad comforted me a lot that night but kept telling me that he needed to tell my mom. I yelled at him not to, and beg him not to. That I would tell her myself.

Little did I know that back home, there were problems on the home front. My step dad accused my mom of cheating on him, and they have been fighting. There were in a midst of a separation. The crap had hit the fan back home. I had no idea what I was literally flying back too. Which by the way, flying a four-hour flight while preggers sucks!! I threw up the whole time. I even had to throw up in the little bags behind the seat while taking off. It was so humiliating. When I arrived in New Mexico I was welcomed as usual but my mom wasn’t there. She always is there to get me from the airport.

I raced to the bathroom and threw up again. This made everyone suspicious of me. I have never done that. EVER!! So once I was cleaned we went to Olive Garden as usual and my step dad was wearing his sunglasses still. I was confused. I looked at my boyfriend and my brother. Neither of them knew haha but I knew something was wrong. My guilt comes rushing to my face! Did my dad tell on me?! My step starts to cry while at the table. Now I am confused. Now mind you I had no idea whats been happening while I was with my dad. Then my step dad laid it out for me. It was the hardest thing for me to hear.

“Kristal your mom and I are getting a divorce.” Oh my gosh NOOO. “I have this suspicion that she has been cheating on me.” hahaha that’s a joke. I did giggle because that was outrageous claim against my mom. She maybe a lot of things but a cheater. NOOOOPE try again. So he tells me the whole story of what he suspects of my mom. I explained to him why those were all false. Anyway that was not good enough to him but I see now that I was a teenager with no real life experience with this sort of thing… YET. They still don’t know that I am pregnant. Maybe I should have stayed with my dad. This is not going to end well. So part of the tradition of picking me up we either go shopping or to a movie. I opted for a movie because then no one had to talk. We can sit silently in our guilt and joys. My step dad and I had a lot on our minds and my brother and boyfriend know nothing. Super. So my step dad picks the movie. He picks ” A Perfect Murder.” I remember looking at my brother then my step dad as tears rolls down his face as the movie plays. Now I am concerned. He walked out and after I gathered my thoughts and my own feelings I had the rest of us follow. I felt bad for the man. There was no way my mom would ever do anything  like that to him. She actually loves this dude. He has is facts all wrong and he was on the bad end of my mom. Then there is me and my bundle of news to deal with. I knew that I couldn’t wait very long to tell my mom. Otherwise, she would be even more upset that I didn’t trust her enough to tell her right away, even though she has her own issues to tend too.

We get home I call my sister right away and talk to her about it, she told me the same thing. I needed to tell mom, but they were arguing in the dining room. I went out there to make sure my brother wasn’t in the room while they were arguing. My step dad had told my mom about what we did at some point. The next morning I was laying on the couch sick a dog and tired, and there stood my mom. She always had this look about her when she had something on her mind. I knew right then she knew. She asked me if I was up for shopping. Like I will turn that down. ” Are you feeling good enough to go shopping with me today?” she said so tenderly. I felt calm enough to tell her once we were in the car. It was just me and her. We rarely had me and her time. So I knew she knew for sure. I sat in the car, and she was backing out of the garage. ” So how far along are you?” I am stunned. Ok we are going to talk about it right now right now. I tell her that I only had found out a few days ago. To which she said that I was not going to keep it and a lecture that I am happy to never have to go through again. She then realized that I needed the How To instructions to sex. Always have condoms, don’t share my body, and the dreaded birth control talk. She asked if my boyfriend knew and I said no. She told me I had to tell him before she calls his mom. OOOOh crap a doodles, she’s calling his MOM!! Better her than me I suppose.

Later on that night, I was called to her room. She had just gotten off the phone with his mom and they both agreed that I was to get an abortion. There was no negations. Now this is where the wall is built-in a day. That choice they made for me was against everything I have ever believed. I was killing a baby that God had given me. I was committing murder and premeditated at that. There was a date and time already. There was no talking about it anymore. I was so upset. I didn’t even get to really make the choice on my own. I see where my mom was coming from. We were young and had our whole lives to have children. Which is all understandable. I get that logic but my relationship with God might change. What if he hates me for this. I am a failure at this too. They all agreed except me. I finally accepted the day before we went.

I remember the sonogram before the procedure, seeing that baby in there. Hearing its heartbeat. I remember it all. I remember being sedated and telling them no as they sucked the baby out of me. That is what it felt like anyway. They told me it was too late and to get up and get dressed. I threw up and sat in the recovery room with other women who hung their heads low. I walked out aware of everything and we went out to eat. It was the first thing I was able to eat in like a month. The after effects of that drug made me feel happy. I wish it could have lasted a lot longer than that day, because that night I felt a darkness over me and it stayed for a long time. I haven’t been able to talk about it until this last year. There were so many unanswered questions for me. I needed to know that I was going to be okay at the end of all of this and no one could tell me. I reached out for help but the therapist wanted me to talk about it. There is that wall again. That stupid tall brick wall.

I stare at the wall, as the therapist is asking me to talk to my dead baby. What would you say to that. I just stared at that brick wall that I couldn’t get over. So I left. I left that mans office and didn’t look back. I was ok. I can get past this. I know that I can. The last thing the therapist kept getting at was forgiveness. That is a strong word for me at that point. How can I forgive this? How can I forgive my boyfriend? How can I forgive my mom? How can I forgive myself? How can God forgive me? So many questions. So many choices had to be made for my future and yet there was this large darkness that had overwhelmed me once more. Maybe it was always waiting in the wings. Maybe God was punishing me.

Well these are all questions that we ask about our Creator isn’t it? Why does God allow bad things to happen? He has to be testing me, right? How can He can forgive even the worst people? Well I may have answer for ya. I had all the same questions throughout many events in my life. Some you will get to know soon enough, but those questions above in these moments I have an answer for.

God, our Father, He allows situations to happen because he has bestowed us with a blessing to cross paths with someone else and our testimony is going to impact that person’s life. Or because we simply didn’t listen to his answer about something he said no to, so he allows us to go through these situations. Always remember that you’re never alone in your situation He already knows how its going to end, and He doesn’t walk you to your situations doorstep just to leave you to go on the journey alone. It’s all about faith that you know He is going to be there to help you through. And at the end of the journey the glory goes to God. Your story matters. You have to have the courage to open your mouth to speak it.

God didn’t leave me in my time of my abortion. I left me. I left everything behind that stupid wall. God was there all along He was waiting for me to take his hand so he can help me out, but I never took it. I went along a very dark path. Dark to me anyway. I acted out. I smoked weed, I had sex again, I drank a lot. I lied. I stopped caring. I was going to do what I wanted to do regardless who it was going to hurt. I went to parties and eventually I went back to my Dads. But God never left me. He walked right by me the whole time just waiting. Telling me softly to not do what I was about to do. Telling me that I was worth it, I shut him out. How can he forgive such an unforgivable sin. That is what I thought for a long time. So how did all these answers come to me.

There is a story that will come later but here is what I will tell you now. The day that I met Jesus, the Holy Spirit, and heard God once more is the day that all those answers came to me. I asked God for forgiveness for the abortion, and he said with a loud Yes. I was asked if I could forgive myself and I started crying. I said Yes. I felt Him hold me close to him. I was being hugged by my Father. I have not ever felt love like that. I learned right at that moment…. What love was. Unfiltered love. I just cried in that couch and cried. I have not ever felt something so pure in my life. I was told that I would one day meet that baby and he was safe. I know how why we go through the things we do. One way or another people come into our lives or we are called to serve Him in ways that we didn’t think were possible. Philippians 4:13 I know now what I am called to do for him. That is to tell you my story. He got me out of the darkness in such a way.

So I am writing this out today because I knew that this is part of the wall that I am knocking out of my life. This is the start of the hard stuff that is yet to be written about. So all week I knew I had to write this part out, and I was staring at that wall in minor defeat. But I knew that I can do this because this is my calling. I will no longer have this brick wall to stare at in defeat but to stare at this wall knowing it’s already been defeated and it is no longer there. I will walk through that shame and guilt with my head held high because my Father has already defeated the enemy and the victory has already been won. All you need is a little bit of faith and courage. I know that my story is going to reach who it is meant to reach. I say there is hope even if your faith is a small as a mustard seed. God can do a lot with that mustard seed. I love you all.

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Chapter 9 Love? What is that anyway?

I will talk about this subject a lot. I am going to treat this chapter as if it were a journal entry. Love… So many of us, if not all of us seek love. So what is love. That is a question all of us seek in our hearts. There is such a stigma that comes with a woman when talks of love. Well darn it everyone wants and needs love. It’s what we think love is. So let me take you on a journey of what that looks like for me.

The definition of Love

Love

Noun

1.An intense feeling of deep affection

2. A person or thing that one loves

3.(in tennis,squash and some other sports) a score of zero

Verb

  1. Feel a deep romantic or sexual attachment to

So that is what the dictionary says. Thank you Bing and Siri for that help. Haha

To me that definition is very subjective. I know for me I, like most people have wanted a love that is so deep and true it would make the heavens rejoice. I always envisioned my very own prince charming. Not only did he have all the looks and that V that drives any sane woman crazy. Thick hair, strong jaw, strong shoulders and the most gorgeous arms that can hold any woman tight and to top it off can wear a great pair of jeans and plain white T-shirt. To me that was just physical stuff. I wanted that and the heart of gold as well. The man who knew how to treat people with the great empathy, respect and knew how to stand his ground. Who has great morals and ethics. Who was proud of me in all my flaws and goodness.A man that would take care of me in all ways the way that I would take care of him. A man who knew how to just love me unconditionally. Finally, good in bed. Of course there is so much more to all of that. I wanted a man that could talk to my heart and intrigue my mind.

As I grow older that all changes a little bit. But I noticed that as I do age there are many kinds of Love. I was wanting a movie or book love. So I thought.

So with me, even though I want to talk about something may or may not exist. There are loves that are very real. There is the love we have for our parents, siblings, other family members,our children,community, our pets, love for our church, friends, friends who are family,movies,books, activities, hobbies. I don’t hear many people talk about how they love themselves or the love they have for our Creator. We have love for them too.

All of those things and I am sure that I have missed some things and people that we love. So what is love to me? What is love to you?

Love to me is God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit. They are one. One is not higher than the other. They each bring different things to the table but its all love. Selfless and raw love. Everything done with the purpose of love. I didn’t that until I actually allowed them into my heart fully. That is the greatest gift that I was given a little over a year ago. The road was long and hard with great moments of life that I cherished. There were all those other moments that happened as well, but even then I always saw a brighter side to those situations. To me they are one and one love that is so perfect.

Then there is love of my children. Everything I have ever done for my kids was done out of love. I knew that I needed to stop the cycle that my own parents had tried to pass down to me. Not that they knew that was happening. I choose to love my kids almost to the point of smothering. Haha. I showed them the love I had always wanted from my parents. I love the crap out of all my kids! I hold them, I kiss them, I cuddle with them, I praise them, I correct them, I would do anything for them. I teach them the why we do things and why we don’t. I prank my kids, I play with my kids. I laugh with my kids, I cry with my kids, and I love watching them grow into the awesome humans they are. They are my world.

The love that I have for my parents is pretty awesome too. I love them both for who they are and all the things they don’t know about themselves. Mom always told me that one day I would learn who they are as people not as mom and dad. She was so right. I learned who they are and some of what they went through to attempt to raise me. Like I said before I wasn’t always easy. I wasn’t meant to be easy. I didn’t love one more than the other. I love them both for who they are and what they mean to me. My mom is one of my bestie, and so is my dad. I can tell them anything. They each give me words of wisdom and they each do it in love. I also love them for all the pain they went through. They are very much a part of my life and love. My mom is my rock and one woman who I love going on adventures on. We have a lot of fun together. I don’t think we would have had that kind of relationship if I hadn’t been me the whole time. My mom wasn’t the only teaching me things in life. For us its a two-way street and it feels great that we push each other in ways that at times makes us uncomfortable but we do it. I love my momma. My dad is kind of like my teacher. We talk about everything too. We love to talk about Jesus and life. He helps me see things from a different point of view and perspective that I may have overlooked. My dad loves me all of me. I definitely get his sense of humor. He and I even talk similar when we talk about life with others. Almost like a teacher would to students. Its wonderful. He knows my mind for the most part. My mom knows my heart for the most part, and together we all make a great team. I feel they raised a pretty awesome human. I think of them like immortals. I can’t see my life without them in it in some way. I felt the same way about my Granddaddy. That man had all of my heart. He and I were connected in such a way that only God knows. He is the man who made a great model of what my husband will be when I was a little girl. I loved him and still love him. Its been two years since he went home to Granny and Jesus. Now he gets to hang around the cool crowd. That makes me smile.

My friends and friends I have considered family…. There are no words for I how I love them. There are really only three people who I have let get close to me. That is just because of all my junk that I carried with me. Some were willing to stick with me through it all. I love them like I do my family. I would do all that I could for them.

Then there is everyone else. I have a lot of love that I want to share with people. I love people in such a way that I don’t judge what you are going through. I don’t even to pretend that I know what you are going through in life. I don’t have that kind of power. There is a lot of people out there that just need someone to let them know that they matter too. Maybe no one has ever said to them Hey I freaking love you. You are important too. But I am not Jesus y’all. I can’t fix this world. I can only do my part in just loving my neighbor, brother and sister. For instance when people say awful things to me, I don’t dare think with feelings or take it personal. I have no idea what that person is going through. I have no idea what pain or joy they have. I choose to respond in such a way that makes me question myself at times. Like, there are times that maybe I should have been pissed but I wasn’t. Forgive and move on. I know that I am different but there are people who feel that they need to tell me awful things they think about me. When really it may be them who is having these feelings about themselves.

Like some people have told me that I need to do something different from spend my time writing or working from home. I am not that person that fits into this world very easily or at all. Trust me and ask my parents. They tried to have me follow what the ” world” expects me to do. That is just not me. I was not put on this earth to do what the world expects me to do. I do what I am asked to do by my Father. What he says goes. Not the world. I have no idea if that makes to y’all but it makes sense to me.

Love is so important to all of us as humans. That is the one thing that we crave the most. It is the MOST WANTED, most desired. We all want to be loved. I am curious what love means to you. How has it impacted your life. Or the lack there of love?

I crave the deepest of intimacy from those close to me. I am so willing to share and I do crave to listen and be there in the most intimate times of people’s lives. If that is one thing I want it’s that sort of intimacy from another human. I don’t how to describe it … yet but when I do find the words I will share. I want a relationship with you all. I want to get to know you, and that is my expression of love to you all.

 

 

Chapter 6 First Love

I am officially with my mom, her new husband and my little brother. My sister is now doing her own thing. This was the summer that I really experienced all the hype of those hormones that all the adults in my life were talking about. I mean sure I was emotionally but as far as boys went I was not interested. That was until this tall boy on a bike rode passed my house. Who was that?

That was it for me. He was all that I thought about from that moment. I didn’t even know his name and yet I have seen him ride passed my house on his bike several times. I have never wanted a bike so bad in my life! Oh and how I wished my brother had a different babysitter than me! I must know this boy. I watched out my window everyday to see if he would pass by, and he did. I finally grew a pair and saw that he was coming and I went outside with my brother. I needed a reason to be outside.

Thankfully my brother was eager to go outside! I happen to step right outside as he was passing my house. He stops abruptly and turns back towards my house. I have major butterflies happening right now. I think I need to pee. Oh MY Gosh. He is very cute. I might be in trouble. He stops and the first things he says is ” Hey are you new here?” Oh yes I am very new here. I tell him that I just moved back from Texas. I tell him my name and he finally tells me his. Joe.

There was this connection between us. I can’t speak for him but it was there for me. From that day on he was over at the house everyday, and I didn’t care because I was with him, and my brother. I broke rules to be with Joe. I had impure thoughts about Joe. Now before you make this something it isn’t. It wasn’t like that for me. Sex was furthest from my mine but my first kiss on the other hand. I envisioned that being with him. The first time I ever snuck out was to be with him.I don’t remember who we were with but I just wanted to be with him.

The way he held my hand and even the way he was proud that I was his girl made me feel good. Boys are dangerous. Haha. I say that kind heartedly because he was the first boyfriend that I ever had. I will never forget the way he claimed me to be his. We were together one afternoon and he pulls me into his tall body and lifts my chin and says ” You know you are my girl forever right?!” Talk about a smooth talker that one. He had my heart from that moment on.  We both started middle school that year and school was about to start. What would that mean for me and him? I had so many questions about his feelings? Did he feel the same for me? Did he talk about me? Did he think about me? Did he still want me when we start school?

First day of school we went our separate ways but not too far apart from each other. We were always there for each other but he was definitely the ladies man and well-known for that. I don’t think I saw that side of him. He always treated me like a lady. He enjoyed flirting, I mean we were young for crying out loud! I was occasionally jealous but it wasn’t something that consumed me. He would date other girls in school and it was nice to talk about him with the others, but I can tell you that non of them would express the same feelings as I had with him or even be treated the same way. He would be kind of like stuck up with the other girls, but he was not like that with me. Even if he wanted to he never did. Joe cared for me. I was his girl. Although I don’t think anyone knew that about me and Joe.

I mostly hung around my girls in school but one day this new boy came into my life. Jeremy was his name. He was sweet boy. He wrote me love letters all the time he even asked me out in a sweet letter. Of course I said yes. He brought me a new stuffed animal everyday. It was the cutest thing ever I felt like I was special. I didn’t know how to have anyone except Joe. But everyday I saw Jeremy I was in awe that boys actually treat young ladies like this. Middle school can be a crazy time for all of us kids. I was torn with my friends telling one thing, Jeremy being so incredibly sweet but that I am hurting someone else because they were in love with him, then there was Joe. My sweetheart who was dating one of my best friends.

I finally gave into peer pressure and let Jeremy go. I didn’t want to but I did. I didn’t like know that I was hurting someone else’s happiness for my own. Although, Jeremy was amazing to me. He brought me something everyday. I still have one of the stuffed animals he gave me but thinking about now, receiving gifts wasn’t something I was always comfortable with but I cherished them. The night that I broke up with Jeremy, my heart was broken. He didn’t want to be a part and I didn’t either but I didn’t like someone else hurting. He ended up going out with that other girl and I spent time to myself for sometime. I thought I always had Joe.

Joe ended up calling me one night and asked me to go the baseball fields near where we lived. I said sure and had permission to go. We met up in the middle because by this time I had moved into my new place in ” Barbie Town,” and we just talked like we always did. Once we got there he told me all his dreams of what he wanted to do when we graduated high school. As he ran around the bases of the field I tried to catch him. We were as his mom calls us Sweethearts. I got on his back and we fell to the ground and we laughed so hard. We just laid on our backs looking at the stars holding hands, he rolled over and just looked at me. We proclaimed our love for each other but in my heart I knew I would never get the guy kind of thing. I just knew that guy loved me, and Jeremy was my puppy love experience. It lessened the blow of losing such a great guy. I mean no one meets their soul mate at that age. IF you did congratulations.

Since that time Joe and hung out a lot. I think he liked having me around but didn’t really commit to me kind of thing although we were accused of that a lot. People thought we were having sex and doing all that sort of thing. I am sure he wanted to but not with me. He sure liked to tell everyone I was his. It made me happy but maybe I wanted more. I am not sure. I mean I have never done anything with a boy but one day at the horse stables I went over to help him out. He had some friends with him and they dared him to kiss me and we just looked at them like they were crazy. He walked over to me and pulled me into his arms and gave me that Joe look. He lifted me onto the bars of the ramp and he kissed me. Oh my! I have not experienced that feeling ever down below but wowza. We just looked at each other while his friends laughed making fun of us. ” yeah sure you guys are just friends” we were. Even after that I never thought of sex. Boys at that age that is all they think about. haha me on the other hand didn’t cross my mind. I didn’t plan on using my body that way for a very long time. Like marriage 

He made me feel so cherished. That is how my dad told me what a boyfriend should treat me like. My mom, I don’t think worried about me being sexually active. I didn’t give her reason too. I didn’t exactly share my body. Summer was soon coming and I inquired new friends. Let’s be honest I have known many people but not very many were close to me. I felt used most of the time. I had some close friends who I could tell everything too. I was lucky to have such cool girlfriends, but boys complicate those relationships at times. Joe was always asked about and if we were a thing. The same answer always came out of my mouth. No we aren’t a thing, yes I will give you his number, yes I know where he lives. Yes I guess we can go see if he is home. It was weird after a while.  I mean we are talking about a guy who claimed me as his but didn’t want me like that. Boys… I like to think that he honored me and didn’t see me in that way, but the connection was there. Or was on my end. Jeremy was happy with that other girl and I was ok with being alone.

During that summer though I was feeling a little left out. All my friends were starting to date older boys and I couldn’t get a date to save my life. I have often wondered why? Why was I in a rush or was I? I was just feeling left out or the third wheel. Or the ugly boy in the group would try stuff with me. Hmm No! Oh that’s it I wasn’t approachable. I was called a prude a lot. I was okay with that. I had nothing to prove. Older boys were always around my friends and I don’t think I liked how they talked or even thought they were entitled to grope. Gross. But I did meet a nice older young man and my parents approved me to be with him. He was marriage material for sure. He was a lot like Joe and a giver like Jeremy. I hit the jackpot with him. His name is Chris. He was good to me. He honored me a lot like how Joe did. He protected me. He was 17 and I was 13. He never tried anything with me.

That summer my virginity was taken from me and I was shamed for it. I later found out that one of my best friends liked my boyfriend. She liked him so much that she paid for another young man to have sex with me. It was NOT consensual. I have not ever felt so dirty in my life. Not only that I felt ruined. I was alone even more so now. I have turned fun me to don’t even look at me, don’t touch me, and don’t talk to me. I was not me anymore. I came home that afternoon and showered. I just wanted to wash it all away like it didn’t happen. This so-called friend ran to my boyfriend spinning lies. My sister asked me if I was okay and I broke down and just cried. She made me tell my mom. I hated telling my mom. She made me talk to the police, do a rape kit and lastly I had to go to school with this ass hat the following year. My whole world has changed once again.

My boyfriend called and he was hurt, he was scared and the guy who raped me was one of his best friends. He kept telling me there is something called Saying NO Kristal!! Like I didn’t try in his eyes. he broke up with me. I just wanted comfort not shame. I got shame and a lot of it. I was once again a loner. That is how it felt anyway. The guy’s girlfriend and friends would throw soda at me when I would walk home. I don’t think my mom knew all that I was going through at that time. I felt like everything that happened to me was my fault. Like I had asked for all of this. That shame turned into rebellion against my mom. I had to survive Hight school the next year. Who was I going to hang around? Who can I trust that is a girl? I met my best friend Tab that eight grade year. She’s still my best friend to this day!! We did everything together. After awhile the whole rape case went nowhere and all those clothes they took from me I threw away. I gave up having girlfriends, and I really hung out with my two best guy buddies. I realized at that moment boys weren’t worth it to me and I was really not wanting sex. NOPE!!! Closed for business…. it was robbed and now closed for sure.

The reason why I brought up my first love. I think that it was one of the most important parts of this age for me. When I came back home with my mom. There was a lot of change and there was hope that all would be well when I came back. There was a lot that went well and were happy moments. But for me as a young woman, finding your first love is something you don’t forget. Through the boys I have dated and hung around they showed me something. Jeremy was a kind young man. I feel he just wanted to pour his heart into his relationships. He was super attentive and attractive. I gave him up because I felt it was the right thing to do for someone else. I learned my first experience with puppy love with Jeremy. He is a successful man who I think enjoys his job and having drop dead gorgeous women on his arm. We haven’t talked in many years. Chris and I never talked after that summer. I tried to get back with him but I was grounded and couldn’t meet him to talk. I have no idea what he is up to but I am sure he is doing just fine. The guy who raped me… well I choose to forgive him. I have no idea what he’s doing and don’t care to know. I just know that I made a choice to move on with my life and not allow what happened to me to define me. The girls that threw soda’s at me, well I am friends with most of them. Women are stronger together than competing with each other. Guys come and go. So do friends. I have chosen to let all that go and redeem my life. For a long time that event of that summer scared me for a long time. Finally, there is Joe. Joe is living what looks like a fulfilled life. He has done a lot of great things in his life thus far. He showed me what it was like to be cherished. To know what it felt like to be honored. I am not sure what he felt on his end. I can only tell you what actions he bestowed onto me. He will always have that one piece of my heart. He impacted my life is such a great way. He has overcome many things in his life that are respectable. His momma is an amazing woman and raised him right. His father was hard on him but he knows his story and it is not for me to tell. I can only tell you what my first love was like. He was a man of respect, a great sense of humor , he was a young man who had big dreams running around in the middle of night on a wet baseball field, who dreamed of a life outside of this small town, to take pride in something that was his. In those moments with Joe I was his and he knew it. I am not sure if he ever knew how I felt. We were kids. I just know that he is living out his dreams and making things happen. I would love to hear what your first love was like. I know that mine was great. His Mom still would refer to us as sweethearts. He is happy and doing well y’all.

So the moral of this story…. Just be happy. Choose to forgive people who have hurt you and move on. Find good people in your life that will be your humans. Remember that we all are flawed and give a little grace and love! Love each other and Love yourself. Remember the good times just don’t unpack there all the time. Give all the glory to God.

Chapter 4 You did what to your hair?

So now that I am living with my father and step mom, my life changed so much! I had All these new experiences, room, clothes, school, lack of friends… Just plain new everything. It can be overwhelming, but in my mind I had this. I can do anything. I was with my dad!

I had to adjust but I didn’t realize that I needed to do that. In my young mind I was with my dad and it was going to be like it was during the summers. I would get to do so many things! I mean I did get to do those things, but it wasn’t always easy street. Especially for them.

They went from a couple’s life with no kids. They liked to enjoy their time together, which was really cool because it show me that they were stable with one another. It was a good balance for me. My dad is a very animated man especially when he is around my step mom. They really did know how to have fun!!

So the first hurdle was me actually going to school. That was a hard thing for me at first. Ok Ok like the first few months. They kids were mean to me, because I was very different from they were. These kids were for the most part well put together and very smart. I didn’t fit in from the get go, but really at this point I don’t fit in anywhere. Kids would make fun of what I wore, my hair, my shoes even my body! It was brutal while I was at school. Lucky for me I was in a good place in my mind.

Their words hurt as well as their actions but it didn’t affect me. I mean it really was child’s play compared to what I was used too. I was good with myself then. It’s not like I knew any different. I couldn’t wait to get home everyday not because they were dicks at school but because I had a purpose. I had chores. I had something to do and parents who encouraged me to do them. I still was a little turd when it came to doing them, but I did like the reward.

I would walk the dog every morning, then get ready for school. walk to school, try not to bark at the other students, walk home, walk the dog, have a snack, do my homework… I did take that last one as a suggestion more than anything. That is the one thing I feel that they struggled with the most with me. Doing homework. I think maybe that is a normal thing. Maybe?! I struggled academically that first year there.

I see now it was because of all the change and stresses that come with that. I had no real excuse of not doing my homework. A lot of the times I didn’t understand the work, and given my past with asking a parent was OUT OF THE QUESTION for me. My dad and step mom did offer their help but I also didn’t want to be shunned for being dumb either. She was a dental assistant and he was an Engineer. They knew stuff. I was more afraid of the rejection and judgement. I know that maybe they had a meeting with my teachers because eventually I was being pulled out of class for special education time. I thought it was fun, but I retained some but not a whole lot. Time was the issue.

So that summer my step mother took me to one of those tutor places. I was sooooooo scared to go but glad I did. It helped me so much the next year I didn’t need those sorts of classes and I had more confidence in asking for help, asking questions and doing my homework.Turns out I really did like school.

So I made my first friend before the school year ended. Her name was Shelby. I will never forget her. One day while at after lunch we were all out on the playground. I went to my normal place under the tree by myself. I had my baseball cards that I just gotten at the Texas Rangers game. ( Oh yes!! I did. It was a blast!! I even got to see Nolan Ryan!!) I was putting the collection into a binder and some kid started making fun of me…again.. and I barked at him. haha yes I barked. I didn’t know what else to do. So this girl named Shelby came to my defense and we were instant friends. That day I made a vow that I would be like her when new kids came to school. I did keep that promise to myself all the way through my senior year of high school. We played everyday. We spoke on the phone everyday. I even got to stay at her house!!! My first sleep over.

We did everything together. We went to Sixflags over Texas, the movies, to Janet Jackson concerts, Boyz to Men concert. She introduced me to her friends which became my friends later. It was so much fun having friends. I had a new purpose at school. I even met my first crush. His name is Chris R. Man I had it bad for this boy and he lived down the street from Shelby.

They both lived in these huge houses where the kids basically had their own wings, backyard pools, queen sized beds, their own phone lines. It was pretty cool. Life was getting pretty awesome. I had friends and I enjoyed life until…. I found my first pubic hair that is.

Six grade was hard!!! Oh my gosh! we learned about puberty early in the year and I was already growing boobs. You can imagine how I was feeling. I was not only tall but had chest nubbies! oh goodie!! NOT! I was now thinking ” Great. Just when things are going great I have to grow boobs.” I was so embarrassed. Anyway, I was soaking in the bathtub one evening because I was not allowed to go swimming because I had swimmers ear. So my step mom suggested that maybe if I take a bath it would ease the craving of wanting to be in the pool. She was so good to me. Well, while soaking I was humming a song and happening to look down and something caught my eye. I wondered what it was. It looked like a hair, so I did what normal people do and grab to throw it out of the tub. But NOOOO it was attached!!! Hmmm noo! No! NO!NO!

I quickly got up and emptied the tub wrapped my towel around myself and ran to my step mother in fear!! Luckily, she kicked my dad out of the room and I told her all the gory details. ( even though there wasn’t any bloodshed that day) I cried in arms and she started giggling. I was in shocked!!! Why is laughing? She peels me off of her and she puts her arms on my shoulders and she tells me that I am going through the change. I started bawling even harder. After some time calmed me down and I asked her NOT to tell my father. Of course she told him. He came in to tuck me in for bed and he said, so I heard that you are going through the change… That darn word! I started crying all over again. I was embarrassed. Now my dad knows!! UGH! why!!

He laughed it off and I did too… Kinda. The Change… I rolled my eyes and went to bed. It was one pubic hair and it felt like the weight of the world was on my shoulders. Good grief. Weeks passed and hair grew and I felt everyone knew at school what I was going through. I feel like I wore a marquis sign saying” I, Kristal, now have Pubic hair. I am going through ‘The Change'” in a constant loop.

One morning I was finishing getting ready for school, and I noticed that my bangs were a little too long. No problem right? Just cut them. I have done that before this wouldn’t be any different. Man, teach me for thinking that morning.

I start cutting. They aren’t coming out straight. So I cut some more. Still not straight. Next thing I know I have a razor in my hand and shaving cream in the other. HONK HONK!!! That is my ride to school!! Crap! I grab the nearest mad hatter hat I had and threw it on. I had art that morning, and it was a combined class that morning and Chris R. was there.

The art teacher asked me to remove my hat and I told her no thank you. She persisted and I politely declined her request which she accepted finally. Hats were allowed for girls but not boys. I knew my rights and that day I was going to use them to the fullest. Well Chris R. opened his mouth and said to everyone in class ” OOOOo someone got a bad haircut!” I leaped over all the students and started swinging at his direction. To which he started laughing which made me even more mad. She told me to go to the nurse and I told her I didn’t want to go. I did my work quietly in that class, then we went back to our normal classes. My teacher kept calling on me during mind math quiz. We had to give the answers to the math on the board without using paper to figure it out. I sucked at this sort of thing. I needed the paper. Not that day. I got every one those questions right. He knew then something was wrong. He made me go to the nurses office.

I sat there as my two teachers explained to the nurse that something wasn’t right and maybe I would talk to her about it. At this point I am shivering. I am so upset as she walks she grabs a thermometer and shoves it in my mouth. It beeps and it reads 95 degrees. I am dead…. yup dead inside at this day. I just want to go home and die. She takes my temp again, and its stays at 95. yup there is the phone to one of my parents. She calmly asks me what going on. I just broke down and started crying and I pulled off my hat. She said ” Okay who do I need to call?” I said my step mom. She handed me a blanket and I waited. She got all my work for that day and my bag. Next thing I see is my FATHER!!! I looked at her with the most evil look. She said that my step mom couldn’t come. Now I am mad!!!

My emotions were all over the place and of course my dad’s response is to laugh at me!! Super great day for my self-esteem! Not! ” Do I even want to know Kris?” I just shock my head at him No and rolled my eyes and walked to the truck. He took me home and wrapped me in a hot blanket and made me my favorite sandwich. I didn’t say one word to him or anyone until my step mom got home.

When she got home, she just gave me the look of “follow me,” to which I complied. She sat me at her vanity and she asked me to remove the hat. I sat there and I slowly peeled the hat off my head. It took all she had to not laugh. There I sat with a mangled , spiky, bald spot of hair. She just started laughing and then I did too. I mean it was bad…. I had a short hair cut to begin with and now I have fashioned a nice buzz cut look for bangs. She then grabbed some bandanas and they became my new fashion accessory until my hair grew out. It was much better than the crazy hats I was wearing. I told her I looked stupid with the headband. She took off the bandana and asked if my new hair cut was better. Touche. She told me that I could start a new thing at school. That didn’t help me feel better at that moment, but I did end making a bandana movement at school. All the girls were wearing bandanas in their hair.

That was my first experience with PMS, I got my first period five days after that moment!! Aren’t I lucky. I learned a lot from this moment.

PMS is a real thing. The phrase ” The Change,” scares all women and makes them cry. Fathers don’t always know how to handle young ladies when they do crazy things with their hair, Pubic hair is not fun when you don’t expect it, the boy you have a crush on is now dead to you when they make fun of your hair, and finally bandanas are a great Oopsie cover up when in need of one. I am fortunate to have had my father and step mom that day and through that moment of puberty. I don’t know how I would have gotten through it. I have not cut my hair on my own since then. #Lessonlearned

 

I hope you enjoyed this experience as much as I did. I was considered a woman after going through it and I am not sure I liked that at the time. Made going swimming difficult. I love y’all. Talk soon.

 

Kris

Chapter 3 Wait… I have a Dad too?

So by the time that I was five years old. I have experienced so much already. There was a moment in my moms daily life with that she decided that it was time that my dad start being in my life too. My mom had this moment of recognition when my sister left for her dads again. She said that I was standing there at the door as usual and I guess I told that I must have a dad that loves me.

This actually broke my mom’s heart. She recalls the moments as tears are filling her eyes. She did a very selfless act and tracked my father down.  She had to go through many of people that have hurt my mom because of my dad. As she tells me more about the story I see a woman who has been deeply hurt and has kept those things to herself. She tells me that even though she would have rather raise me alone than to share me with my father.

I didn’t know the full extent of why she felt this way about my dad. I was young my mind isn’t going to understand adult issues. I know more now and it is so much more than what I expected. I will say this though. You have to love someone so much to hate them as much as my parents hated each other.

So back to the selfless act that my mother did. She tracked my father down and arranged a visit. I would soon be on a plane flying to the big D! Dallas. What a wondrous place.

You know for a young child who just discovered that she actually had a father I was more in awe that I had a step mother. Man was I lucky girl that summer. So many new things happened to me that I may have been on an overload of information.

I mean I flew in a plane for the first time. My mom bought me gum for the flight, she packed me things to do, and made sure that I had my name badge draped over my neck. Thinking about it from as a mom now, I will be honest, me sending my young child on a plane alone would be F-ing scary. That is putting a lot of trust into many people to take care of your child. Blind trust= faith on a whole other level! I earned my wings. You know the plastic wings that they hand to all children who fly. I always sat in first class. I remember just enjoying peanuts looking at all the clouds. I actually thought that the clouds would actually feel like pillows and hold me up. I later shared this thought with my sister and she ruined that for me . Haha, she told me that I was stupid for believing such fairy tales. That if I were to ever touch or sit in a cloud that I would fall to my certain death.  ( you see what I mean by not having a tribe to keep me accountable) Even though she was right, I still wouldn’t back down from what I thought.

Flying then was a true fun experience. All kinds of people, all around all the time. Coming and going. I now am one of those many people who are going to and fro. I was lucky that this was happening. Although, I didn’t know it at the time. I was just excited that I had a dad waiting for me on the other side.

I came out of the terminal with the tall lady holding my hand and she securely handed me over to my father. He held me tightly, I savored this moment. I was being held. Just think about that…. being held. Can you feel the security and the affection that person holds for you. You are wrapped in their arms and the whole world is quiet for those moments. Think about how many times a day we don’t hold each other. Well for me as a child I craved those things. I craved being held and cuddled with. To be kissed. I didn’t have that with my mom. That was something that she wasn’t raised with. I often think how many times in her life she just needed to be held and shown that she was loved with a simple gesture. That thought alone brings tears to my eyes.

He let go of me and pulled his wife close to him and I met my step mother. We clicked immediately. She presented me with a gift. A wind up ceramic clown. I still have that clown. It is very special to me. It went pretty much everywhere I went that summer. I got to spend a lot of time with them both, and so many others from that side of family. That summer I spent a lot of time in the pools, eating the most delicious ham sandwiches, riding in a Model T Ford truck, playing with my cousin Amanda in the Ft. Worth heat, having carmel popcorn with my Granddad and learning how to sew with my Granny, and lastly crying all the way to Wichita Falls to visit Granny Burt.

So many hugs and so much affection. So many gifts. I belonged with these people. You know things made sense to me. The way they spoke me, or corrected me, I felt secure. My dad was a funny guy. He played with me. He showered me with simple things like just holding me until I fell asleep. My step mom painted my toes, she made jokes about how men were pigs and ladies are ladies. The voice she said it in made me laugh every time. We would take showers together and we were two hams, singing as loud as we could. She showed me how to take care of myself by loving myself. I would switch back and forth between everyone for all this love, but I was never far my dad. I would soon have to return back to my mom.  I wish I could stay here with them.

Little did I know all the complications that were going to come from these moments with my dad. Not only for myself but for my mom too. When I came home I was full of life and couldn’t shut up about all the things that I did that summer. Things were so different between the two houses. HUGE!!! Even though my mom was supportive of my experiences, she would be waiting for the other shoe to fall with my dad. I am sure that it was a constant worry for my mom now that I spent time with him

I would eventually talk about my dad all the time. I didn’t know that I was causing my mom stress and anxiety. Maybe jealousy and feeling like I was an ungrateful child. Then visitations seem to be a regular thing now and my mom was getting a little more frustrated with the topic of my dad. I started really acting out. But not only just because my dad was in the picture but I started trying to figure out why my parents acted the way they did with me and how it was confusing to me. Who was I? Who were they? Who were they to me?

I started asking questions. It was like the pandoras box of things that I was to young to really understand what their points of view were. I did gather one thing, they hated each other.

My mom decided to transfer all of us kids to a different school district. A much nicer school system I might add. I for the most part fit in with those children. They were a lot like me as far as witty, smart and just well rounded of awesome. I am biased though, I really liked all the kids there and the teachers.

My previous school wasn’t so nice. Kids there had a different set of codes to live by. It was survive or die. Roughing it out kinda of thing. School of eat or be eaten. haha Even the teachers were so unhappy there it felt like. They didn’t as attentive to students. For instance I was telling my second grade teacher about my mom and nothing happened. I am not saying that I wanted my mom to get into trouble, but we were learning about ” good touch bad touch, and ‘if anyone is hurting you at home, we are here to help’ or ‘ Stop child abuse.”  with a toll free number to call. So really I was just taking my education that was just taught to me in class to reach out to someone. But at this new school I wasn’t going to say anything. I just might make some friends. Which I did, it helped that I had a cousin who was going to the same school.

What made me kind of uncomfortable was that I was not as smart as these other kids. I struggled, and this was too much for my mom. That is what my perception is anyway. I learned how to spell Knock after my first time encountering vocab night with my mom. Haha Oh my gosh the stories about vocab nights. My mom was something else when it came to education. She made it very intimidating to ask for help. Anyway I am getting off track a little bit.

So I had this math teacher. Ms. Davis. Man she was a great teacher. Intimating at times only because I didn’t understand the operations that she was teaching. She observed a lot. That also made me weary. She asked me to stay behind in class. I was actually scared. All my class mates left to go to lunch and I was stuck here with her. I wonder what she is wanting from me.  So many thoughts were running through my mind. This whole situation is making nervous.

She asks me to sit down, and she asked me if something was wrong. Well that is a loaded question. I didn’t know what to say. Then she asked me why I was behind in math and turning in my homework. These were hard questions for me. I was a little defensive. I didn’t want to say that night before my mom got mad at me because she didn’t understand why they were teaching pre-algerba to a third grader. Needless to say I hadn’t turned in my homework because I don’t get and can’t ask for help at home. Then she hit me the what she really wanted to know.She asked me if I was being abused at home, and not to be afraid of saying anything. That I was safe.

Well this is a moment of discernment for me. Do I trust that this teacher is really going to help me or is she going to be like the last teacher who caused more of an issue for me? Those questions were tossed in my head for too long, because the subsequent statements of encouragement helped me in my choice. I decided to talk about it. After telling her my life story with my mom, she comforted my the best way she could. She empathized with me the best she could. She gave me affirmations that it was a good thing for me to have told her. She also told me that she had a feeling that something was happening at home.

Later on that day, I was talking to two other people in the office about what I told my teacher, and I just told them everything that happened. That mom was so pissed at me because I didn’t make it back to her boyfriends house when she asked me to, so she left me there and went home. Which was in the next town over. About 30 minutes away. You would think that I would be used to her leaving me but it was something that never felt good. When she drove all the way back to get me and she was furious with me. She made a lot of blind threats with the exception of being grounded. She took away dinner from me as well. I know now that she was pissed but then I just thought that she meant what she said. I mean its not like my mom and I had a solid foundation of trust. So in that office I was singing like a canary. I just thought WOW someone is actually listening to me. I didn’t know it was CPS!!! oopsie my bad.

I went to the library to wait for someone to pick my up, and when I saw my mom. She was mad and I didn’t know what about. That is when I found out that those people I talked to called my mom and told her that she was being investigated for child abuse. This was F-ing confusing to me. Who do I trust??? Who am I? I mean think about it…. I get in worse trouble when I am being honest, but nothing happens when I lie? Who, what, where how am I do be??? Who Am I Really?? For crying out loud there is no winning. I am just not worth this trouble, because that seems to be all that I am at this point in my life. I am confused as to what is right and wrong.

I was honest with CPS about everything I said to them. I am a great story teller, so maybe I made the impression that I wasn’t suppose to? I don’t know, I just know that my mom blames me if she loses her job for my “false” story to these people. I mean I told them EVERYTHING!! Then she lays it on me…. KRISTAL YOU ARE MOVING WITH YOUR FATHER. I CANT HANDLE YOU ANYMORE. I AM AFRAID I MIGHT JUST KILL YOU.

Cool. That was probably the best news I have heard! I didn’t get to say bye to anyone. She literally put on a plane the next day. haha Things changed for us both. I feel that she made a great choice.

I know I talk more about my mom from my early years. She was the one that was there. She was the one taking care of me. I feel that sometimes kids take things out on the parent that is actually there everyday. They take them for granted. That is my opinion. I am not saying that the things I am talking about define my mom. My mom is my mom. She gave me life. Very cliche I know but its the truth. Now that I know my dad, I feel that the grass is greener on the other side. That just shows that I didn’t know what was really there for me on that other side. Almost everyone has had those moments of thinking of the grass is greener, but that is because of something they are lacking, or things that were presented to be better with that person or people. Whatever it is. In my case it was my parents.

I mean I have only known my dad for a small amount of time. The time that I had with them was brief. That is not how life was going to be all the time. I didn’t know that. Before I left my mom, brother and sister my mom told me that I have put my dad on a pedestal and I would learn who he really was. Of course she was angry, hurt, feeling betrayed, sad, rage, disappointment and relief. This was new start for the two of us. This was another selfless act that my mom did and something she needed to do for her own sanity. I know I didn’t help her condition. I feel that my mom like so many others back then didn’t talk about depression, postpartum depression, or any mental illness. I mean a lot of people did NOT talk about that sort of thing. Unfortunately, that still is the case.

My mom was raising three kids on her own, with little to no help from our fathers. She was our soul provider. She took the brunt of everything that happened. The sad part is that  we didn’t know what was going on with mom. My mom was carrying the weight of her world and I was just focused on mine. I feel that she was suffering from all these things and said nothing. Just held it all inside. Then lashed out. She didn’t have an outlet maybe? I am not sure if there were real help or tools to help with such things.

I know for me what helped me through all of this up to this point was God. My dad had given me a bible. My Grandparents from both sides and my dad taught me things about God. He seemed totally trust worthy. I talked to him all the time when I younger. I would tell him how I felt like a curse. How I just wanted my mom to be happy. I wanted to see my dad. How I wanted to be loved and cherished. I wanted to be worthy of love. I would talk to him like he was my friend. He guided me. I would open my bible with no real understanding of His Word, but man I was hungry to know Him and I didn’t even know it. I really saw God as my friend.