Since I have been out of town, I have not been able to see my therapist. I saw her on Friday. We talked about my 4 year old step-niece, who lives with my dad along with her dad and my dad's wife. We talked about how I have heard him threaten my step-niece, and they are going to my great-uncle's house for holidays, the one who molested me. This is how it started with me. When she talked to me about confronting my dad, I could not breathe and my chest tightened. What could he do to you now, she asked. I said I was still afraid of him. I told her I had tried to get the police report, from when he beat me so savagely, and when I told the police about my great-uncle, so I could send it to my step-mom and stepbrother. I could not get it though.
I told her I just wanted to get away from my parents, not confront them, and she said, you do not want to take the coward's way out, like your brother. She said I held all the cards because I could tell what happened. I walked back to work. I left at 5:30, stopping in the bathroom to cry. I walked home, and stopped at Blockbuster to rent "The Constant Gardener.” A lot of people wore green. I got home and went to bed.
The next morning I woke up at 7:30 and left to renew my driver's license. I wore all black, and didn't smile in my picture. I looked...I do not know what I looked like. Blank. While I waited, I read in one of my trauma books about why men who were hit as a child hit their children. To regain a feeling of power.
I stopped by Whole Foods on the way home, and bought vitamins, juice, and vegetables. Two paper bags, double bagged. At home, I called a friend and left a message. I watched the movie. When it ended, I sat down to write a letter. My friend called back and said I was doing the right thing. I printed 2 copies, and addressed 1 to my stepbrother and 1 to my step-mom. I also wrote a letter to my mom. As I walked out of my apartment, I started to gasp for air. My chest was tightening up. I walked outside, and then turned around. It was cool but sunny outside. I got my sunglasses to cover my eyes, and started out again.
As I walked, I still struggled to breathe but my steps became more and more purposefully. I told myself, I am doing the right thing. I told myself, I can write whatever I want, and send it to whomever I want, because it is the truth. I thought about how everyone in my dad's family, including my dad, acted like they were afraid of my grandfather, even though he was old and frail and could barely walk. I never understood it until I realize how terrified I was. I thought, he cannot hurt me anymore, I am an adult and I can protect myself now.
I stopped at 2 different mailboxes, and mailed my stepbrother's and my mom's at 1 and my step-mom's letter at another after getting different stamps. I had printed labels for my step-mom's and wrote in girlie, different handwriting in green pen for my step-brother's, and made up different return addresses, so my dad wouldn't recognize they were from me when he got the mail. I said a prayer at each mailbox, forgive me for waiting so long to tell, and may my step-niece and I be okay.