I find it kind of sad
The dreams in which I’m dying
Are the best I’ve ever had
I can imagine that you, my respected followers, think that this is a story of my self entitlement. No, it is not even close.
I spent my early days catching my mother’s wrath as soon as my brothers went to school. I was about 3 when I call to mind having migraines. I can recall pulling on the phone cord in our kitchen when my mother was talking to someone and pointing at my head saying ”hurt, hurt”. When she wasn’t on perpetual talk mode with her BFF across the street, she was helping me clean my room. You see, I did not know that other children did not experience this. I felt if my mother said something was messy, and then it was. Her idea of cleaning a room was to pull my drawers out and throw them across the room, never seeing if I was part of the patriot missile target she was delivering. She would pour EVERYTHING on the floor. Open a drawer, spill it over and go to the next drawer. If she was especially taken aback by a sock not being matched, she would make me pull down my pants and beat me. That was legal, and even encouraged at the time. I cannot even imagine doing that to my child. I have probably hit each of my children once. My oldest, not at all. The middle child for stealing. And I truly regretted it, even if it was warranted. My youngest, for smarting off. Also regrettable. And they hate me for that. Can you imagine if I would have beat them with a belt? Ugh.
My father was always concerned – about the furniture, that is. Combined with the stripes on my backside. The furniture especially because he hated to have to order new and fixing the existing would not stand the pummeling of my mom.
He confronted her. Once. Guess who got the fury of that?
She went as far as to say I tattled on her. So the result was almost unbearable.
I grew up into a very insecure fearful child. I can never do anything to please my mother.
My sister was born when I was 10. I was thrilled. I immediately brought her to bed with me. She never spent a day in her crib. I never woke my mother for her night time feeding. I did it myself. And she was perpetually at my side. I took her wherever I went except school and overnights at other’s houses. She would scream bloody murder when that happened.
This was a tough time for my mother, my father was cheating on her. She was scared. She had nothing more than a 9th grade education. He met her in Biloxi and married her when she was 15. Her friendship base were my father’s. You can envision her fright.
But my friends were beginning to exclude me from events where I would bring Marnie. (I know it affected my friends. Facebook has opened my childhood up to reunion. Once, Mary M. said that she could not believe that my sister and I aren’t close since I had her with me always. She felt bad about excluding me, but she said the others begged her). My mother did not care. I talked to her, but she said family was important. I was 12. This wasn’t a situation where I was choosing. I just wanted to be a kid once in a while myself. So I did the next worse things. Again, I spoke with my father.
The results? The same.
I gave up.
When I was 16 and moving out of the house, my mother had my sister sitting in a chair crying.
“See! What are you going to do - leave your sister?”
Excuse me, but I am 16 and not the child’s mother.
I did everything for my sister through the years. When she had difficulty at 17 in the home, my father and mother called in the middle of the night and my husband drove the 60 miles to Kenosha and brought her to our home. I got her through school, ignored some obvious indiscretions. She was with us almost a year. When she went to work in the summer at Marriott’s Great America, my husband would go at 3am to pick her up. And of course they took their time getting home. It hurt, but I refused to confront it. My marriage would be over and I would be the bad guy. I could have problems with the devil himself and my mother would side with the devil.
10 years later she moved in with my husband and I when we bought our new house. We had not moved in yet and there she was. So we didn’t have that wonderful self contained family celebration, because frankly, she was there. She stayed for a couple of years. Inviting her friends at will, which, for the most part, I love her friends, but sometimes I felt like I was being taken advantage.
Then she moved her soon to be ex-husband in, and he DID take advantage.
Then she bought a dog who immediately chewed up my brand new, not even a week old, queen ann table. And again, she turned it on me, my fault.
Then she moved, but we stayed in touch. She asked to meet me to discuss a problem. She was pregnant. She did not want to marry Hank, she didn’t love him. Would I please call mom and tell her no wedding.
Marnie lied and said she said no such thing. My father believed me, but was helpless against my mother and her. So…two years, a little more. No one but my father talked to me.
So, you can imagine my surprise, no that is too understated, bolt from the blue: My mother and my sister showed up, without announcement.
Neither had been to my house before. You don’t say you were “just in the neighborhood”. They lived 1500 miles away in Kenosha, Wisconsin
When they arrived, I was on my way to work. I called in suicidal. Willie would be working the night shift; we were just getting to know each other. Now she was going to endure the familial wrath. And trust me, they did not disappoint. Everything seemed copasetic initially.
My sister had surgery on her foot (from the house falling on her) and was in need of attention since she drove the van. Willie did something straight out of the bible. She brought a pan of warm water, undressed her wound, cleaned it and redressed it. From that moment on she seemed to curry favor from the impossible. The same would not be true for me.
My sister and mother were preoccupied with me. it has been the two of them cackling and retched laughter. Ewww...The two of them made sport of me, ridiculing, demeaning me. The most difficult was the invalidation. I could bring up ANY subject and that would be the signal. For instance, I was in the room with my mother and my sister and several other family friends.
I brought up the dances of my youth. These dances were a pinnacle of my puberty. They were in the church auditorium,CYO (Catholic Youth Organization). My mother sneered at me and said “What the hell are you talking about Dianne? I have never heard of CYO. And of course my sister laughed at me and said “you just make things up as you go".
Something so trivial, blown out of proportion and of course, making me rethink my own memories. I did not have many pleasant ones, so the few I had, I treasured.
But someone spoke up in my defense. This was something unheard of and Rose (my salvation) said
“Mae, we used to take the kids all the time and we’re not even Catholic! Atleast that's what you said they were.”
She, of course endured the silent wrath of the situation. I just thought it was funny that she was actually pulled down a few knocks. Oh, and that I’m not out of my mind This was just typical of the opposition I withstood every time I went to visit them. One EXAMPLE of thousands. Nothing I said was the truth.
The irony is all my life everyone, family and friends commented on my mother’s ability to turn everything around. Also, she either embellished (if she was for the person or situation) or demeaned a person. Her tales were frequent and most people just laughed it off. My father knew. He told me
“Dianne, I don’t know what to do anymore. She absolutely doesn’t get it!”
“Well dad, no-one says anything, so why should she stop? It is a sort of fanaticism and it won’t end until then.”
He claimed he did confront her. The worst, he said, my sister was following suit. Now, there was a time I could actually say my sister was above reproach. And then she moved in with me and I saw a different side. But it wasn’t as bad as my mother. Even she made reference to my mother’s mendacity, saying it was so frustrating. If possible, Marnie is worse. Most of my mother’s were harmless. Marnie, she is vicious and without acknowledgment. She actually, like my mother, believes her own lies.
This is a difficult situation to live in for anyone. I cannot stay a week with her without disgust and disappointment. My sister is gone and all that’s left is this tyrant. And the Mary I used to know was sweet, loving and funny.
And anyone who enters their home suddenly acts like they are sworn in by the Superior Court and have had gag orders.
They say nothing and do her bidding. It’s pathetic.
Destroying my life. Marnie has made this her life’s goal. It is sad. Instead of maybe reading, or writing, drawing, anything…she spends her life taking me apart. Why? MANY reasons. All of which, if believed by other’s would loose her friends, maybe family, some for sure in the south. She has caused rifts with every family member. Making up narratives as she goes along. Neither of my brother’s talks to me. The oldest because of her fabrications, the second oldest because of his own.
She is eventually going to have to come to blows with it. She goes to church every Sunday, St. Andrews? So she must believe in God. She also has had the absolute worst things that can happen to a mother. Things that if they happened to me, I would be groveling to make certain it didn’t happen again, that is, if I hadn‘t shot myself. And that is all I can say about that. But if she believes in eternal salvation, or even reincarnation of the Buddhists, she will need to make amends. Or just stop. That would work. Stop lying, stabbing friends and family in the back. Turning family against family.
Meanwhile, back to Houston:
Marnie and my mother Mae had stopped in and planned to stay a few days. Nothing went well for me. My sister-in-law (My husband’s gay sister) told Willie to NEVER allow me to be alone with them, but it seemed that they had matured from the past and thus, gave the impression that everything was water under the bridge.
Ok ...Take a deep breath because Willie and I had a false sense of security.
Willie went to work while Marnie, my mother, my daughter and my sister’s two children went clear across Houston to eat. It was a restaurant called Houston’s (go figure). My sister worked there at some point when she moved in with me.
At that time she was a real, honest to goodness, human being … and then the house fell on her and someone took back the Ruby slippers.
She hasn’t been the same. Mmm. Ok. During that time, unannounced, she treated my home as a gathering place for her friends that needed a cheap place to stay.
Once again, I am behind myself, Back to Marnie, Mae, me, my 2 nephews (who will play an integral part of all our lives, so profound, it will be more than most people could take in several lifetimes) my precious daughter, and Houston’s.
There I was, 42 years old allowing myself to relinquish any dignity I had, and in front of my child no less. I can’t remember what the argument was about. My mother and sister felt completely at ease disciplining my children, but any part of the family that tried to reign in her boys were subject to more than a cursory counter attack from my mother or my sister.
Willie said that prisons were being built for them as we spoke. (How prophetic that will become).
They were handsome boys, given to rambunctious behavior as boys surely are. But all children will get out of hand without adult supervision. My sister’s idea of supervision is to scream at them or ignore them. The younger one was at even more of a disadvantage because – as my sister told us, he, the younger of the 2, was denied by his father. We will call the older Joseph and the younger, Jessie.
We are driving in my sister’s van, to the restaurant. The boy’s were starting up and the older, Joseph punched the younger, Jesse. Jesse screamed, whereas, my sister, yelled at Jesse and I had the audacity to have a “look” on my face.
That was the announcer saying
...“Let’s get ready to rumble!!!!”
Here's a visual...3...2...1...
There you have it, my sister and mother. Including the rewording of everything I (and anyone else) says.
No rhyme. No reason.
And noone wants to get in between them/ They would sell their own souls before they would defend anyone or anything from Marnie or Mae.
It seemed it would never stop. With Marnie and Mae, you could actually see bat’s wings sprouting out from their shoulders.
My life as a child was filled with fear, Inconsistencies and most days...without hope. And adulthood did nothing to lesson these horrors. If possible they are worse.
To be continued
Music:Tears for Fear/ Mad World
Some of the names and characters in this blog are fictitious. This is an acount of actual events. For the few who have given me permission, I thank you. © Truth has witnesses ©DSL
© This material is the copyright of Dianne Schuch Lindsey and cannot be duplicated in any fashion without the express permission of the Author. All rights reserved