I’ve been thinking about some books I’ve written about heroines scarred by living in bad foster care situations or with mothers who suffered addiction or mental disease. I have memories as a child that made me long to be with a mother who abandoned me for four years and my brother since he was two and my sister a baby. I will never know her full story because she didn’t ever want to talk about it. As a child, my imagination spun stories all revolving around my mommy coming home to get me.
I was different from my friends, who all lived in families with a mom and dad and siblings. I lived with my grandmother and grandfather and my brother lived far away with his dad, my stepdaddy. My baby sister lived with her aunt and uncle and was raised as their daughter.
Those early formative years for me began the process of making me an introvert. I never felt truly loved or wanted. Not even after my mom came to get me to live with her and my new stepdaddy. We all lived in a house with my new grandparents. I missed my other grandparents and cried and cried when I was taken away.
Throughout my growing up years, I never felt as if I belonged anywhere. I was a square peg trying to fit into a round hole. When I lived with my grandma and grandpa after mom left, we had running water, a bathroom and bathtub. After mom took me away, we lived in a house that had a pump outside where we drew water into a bucket. We didn’t have a bathroom with a tub and toilet. The toilet was outside in a little wooden house.
This was a huge change in my life. But children adapt easily. Except for a little girl, whose imagination, created stories of better places, better things. Stories made while riding a horse made from a stick and galloping into fairy worlds beside the creek waters.
This is the memoir I’m trying to capture for my family. The book I’m titling “The Child I Was.” The years they never knew me. I want them to understand what made me the woman I am today. So why did I begin this with the previous novels with heroines who had scarred childhoods? I think you can figure this out after reading the blog post. And also because in novels you don’t often find parents being a big part of the story. In many novels, the parents are deceased.
No one is perfect. We have children and do our best to raise them with good morals, hope, and lots of love. We make mistakes along the way because we are learning along with them, and our pasts help and hinder us.