Life had started sliding down hill at thirteen when I was propositioned by a male member of my immediate family. I started my very long working career at fourteen, and was raped that same year; an old man flashed me on the beach at fifteen; and I had my first big crush, an unrequited love, at sixteen.
I also landed a great new job, union and all, at sixteen and bought my own school books, clothes and a nice new car: a 1967 Camaro. At seventeen, I travelled to Europe and thought that maybe the worst was behind me. I couldn’t have been more wrong.
At nineteen I ran into the first of many more. Once he had established what looked like a caring relationship with me, he started to terrorize me. He threatened to drive his car through the plate glass window at work if I didn’t leave with him that minute. As I started hiding from him out of fear, he stepped up his agenda. One day I caught him in our driveway trying to stuff a rag into his gas tank and light it on fire. I felt I had to reconnect for fear of what else he might do.
He held me captive in his room with a huge piece of glass at my throat. I was petrified, and when I finally told Mom, she immediately picked him up, drove him to his room and told him to pack a suitcase. She must have sacred him silly, because he did exactly what she told him. Mom drove him to the bus, bought him a one-way ticket out of town, and then laid the law down. “If there ever comes a day when I see you again in this town, it will be your last day.” I never saw him again.
My biggest mistake of all was when I eloped at twenty-one and got pregnant on my wedding night. I had no intentions of having kids. Pregnancy, although only nine months long, would come to mean a lifetime of being a responsible parent. I might not have been brilliant in the relationship department but I was always accountable. So, I wore all my mistakes.
Two months after my son was born, I became a single parent. My husband asked me if he could borrow my car to take his suitcase to the city. My answer, “Pal, if you’re leaving, you’re walking.” And so he left without any remorse. His last words were, “I have better things to do with my life than take care of the two of you.” And he literally disappeared: probably the first dead-beat dad in Canada. I picked myself up again and moved on.
At twenty four I met another one: he was employed, handsome and funny. We moved in together after about ten months and it wasn’t until then I found out that two beers were all he needed to initiate the biggest argument out of nothing at all that any one person ever told another about. And then one night he sprang out of bed because my son woke up crying from a nightmare, which almost never happened. This guy picked him up, yelled at him and then shook him. The next day after he went off to work, I changed the locks on the doors and threw his stuff out the window. I would be off men totally for a few years. I also wondered if the ocean I was crying would mildew the carpet.
There were a few insignificant romances but I would be twenty nine in 1980 when the next man made it into my heart. He was a high school teacher: educated, so this was a step up. He was fun to be with, outdoor man, coach and such so he got along well with my son. We read books together, travelled, camped in some beautiful places and I found he was personable and loving. A year after we met, we were married. We took my son on our honeymoon in a twenty-five foot motor-home, with canoe, dog and tunes, and off we went into the wilderness.
About three months after the wedding, the husband got word the company was moving him south to California for the winter while sales were slow. We stayed home and I actually got a job myself even though, for the first time in many years, I didn’t have to work. In fact I found myself at the interview wondering what on earth I was doing there. Why would I want to work if I didn’t have to?
What was about to happen was one of my favourite miracles.
….to be continued
Stop Violence – lachris77 @ 123rf Stock Photos
Windshield – Bernd Jeurgens @ 123rf Stock Photos
Very Sad – Richard Martin Lee @ 123rf Stock Photos
Miracles – Nattapon Wongwean @ 123rf Stock Photos
Recent Faye Thornton Articles:
- A Journey To Spirit #24: Divine Messages
- A Journey to Spirit #23: The Big C
- A Journey to Spirit #22: And Now It Was Done
- A Journey to Spirit # 21: And So It Began…
- A Journey to Spirit #20: Breathless Heart