I am going to write this piece as objectively as possible. If you haven’t caught on by now, this is why I use first names like Kim or Jack A. versus the terms mom or dad. Also, I am trying to leave out as much emotion as possible and just tell the events as they happened. I am also a firm believer that terms like momma and daddy are not only terms, but titles to be earned. My ‘parents’ were simply two people who had to be in my life to get me to the point I could survive on my own.  They are not deserving of the ‘mommy’ and ‘daddy’ titles. I almost feel like I should have clarified this in the beginning, but it is what it is. This piece is going to be more of a history lesson about the people in my life as opposed to the abuse I suffered. Please bear with me in the event that I become redundant.

Kim was a party girl and she loved to live it up as much as possible. I remember her telling me that she was ashamed of her family (my grandmother and grandfather) because they were poor and her best friend was one that was privileged. Her parents had money. Kim would go to her house before school to change clothes nearly every day. She absolutely detested the things she was made to wear because nine times out of ten, they were hand-me-downs from her older sisters (of which there were three). She drank, she smoked, and she did a variety of what can only be considered as ‘soft’ drugs. Until she officially met Jack A. that is. I will elaborate on that more later.

I was roughly eight years of age when Kim decided that she needed to have her first ‘sex’ talk with me. I remember it was a bright and clear day. We were at the Laundr-o-Mat that was close to our apartment. I was in the fourth grade. At that particular moment, Kim had stepped outside while the laundry was drying because she wanted to smoke a cigarette and I was outside on the side-walk skating. My feet were firmly planted in my Barbie skates. To say the least, I was rather innocent. She started off telling me about a party she had gone to. Kim then elaborated and said that she had taken a couple of pills, though she didn’t remember what they were or how many she had taken. Her narration included that she guessed they had been laced with something a little extra though she was unclear of what that could be but it wasn’t like anything she had ever taken before. When she woke up the next morning, she was unsure of several things. The first of which was where she was, 2.) where her clothes were, 3.) who the two naked guys were that she was in bed with, and 4.) what she had or hadn’t done with those naked guys. At this particular moment, my aunt (her sister) Trina burst in the room like a knight in shining armor. My grandmother had commissioned Trina with finding my mother and bringing her home safely.

During Kim’s escapades, she met my biological father Edward and got pregnant. Most likely in the clichéd way of one night stands. Kim was nineteen years old and Edward was twenty. My grandfather (Kim’s father) forced Kim to marry Edward. In the tradition of marriage, my mother had to move from her parents home in with Edward…………. and his grandmother.  I need to explain the way that my mother discovered she was pregnant. She went to the doctor on three separate occasions. The first time the doctor told her that she probably had a stomach bug and gave her a prescription to help clear ‘it’ up. Of course my mother went promptly to the drug store to have it filled and took the meds for a week. The second visit she told the doctor she was still having stomach problems and he prescribed a different medication. Again, she went to have it filled and waited a week. The third visit, she asked the doctor to check and see if she was pregnant. The results were immediately revealed and lo and behold, I was born after Kim’s twentieth birthday.

My mother had claimed that after my birth, she tried to fly on the straight and narrow and tried to change Edward. This isn’t the whole truth. From the several people who have divulged their version of these events to me, I have been able to piece together what really happened.

Kim gave Edward an ultimatum. She told him that because she was a mother, she needed to be responsible and therefore, he had to be as well. Which, in part, this meant that she wanted to move out from under his grandmother’s roof and into their own place so she could raise me as she wanted to without any interference. She said she would leave him if he didn’t do this for her. So they made a big move into their own place. Unknowingly they moved into a first floor apartment (where Edward had found full-time work as a maintenance man) right below Jack A., his wife, and their young little boy. Kim had met Jack A. in an ‘I know you from’ scenario. Jack A. had graduated with Kim’s older sisters.

My mother claimed that Jack A. was just a friend and the three of them found that it was fun to go out partying together. Jack A. and Edward were both equally good so they would hustle to make some extra $$.

When all seemed to be going well, Edward discovered that Kim and Jack A. had been having an affair.  Unfortunately they were in the car and heading somewhere when an argument broke out.  My mother claimed that she was going to move back in with her parents and that she was taking me with her.  In a very heated moment, pulled over on the side of the highway, Edward tore me out of my mother’s arms and the movement was somewhat violent.  My head smacked into the driver’s side window causing me to cry.  Edward finally returned me to my mother and she and I went for a walk down the highway.  Edward sped off to go back to the apartment, pack his things, never to be seen again until my 18th birthday.

At some point in Edwards packing, he was able to locate and tell Jack A.’s wife what had been going on.  I’m unclear on the discussion or events on that side of this tale.  I just know that his wife and son left and Jack A. and Kim were the only two left in the equation; left to explore their relationship without the pesky etiquette of marriage.  Something about ONLY sleeping with your spouse and not other people.

Jack A. was the original bad boy type.  He had been able to train from a very young age in martial arts.  At one point in his life he was in several full contact trounaments.  He even had his teeth busted out by a girl.  I’ve always wanted to meet the chic that did it and maybe shake her hand.  During the early stage of Kim and Jack A.’s relationship, asside from the fact that my mother still partied, she was now with someone that was even more of a drug addict than she was.  Jack A.’s best friend was crack or anything that he could snort up his nose.  I never saw him or my mother do drugs but that’s not to say they didn’t do it away from home or after my sister and I went to bed.

Jack A. and Kim along with Kim’s sister (Trina) and her husband (John) thought that it would be a good idea to pull a get-rich-quick scheme.  Someone had the bright idea to commit money order fraud.  My mother was the theoretical test dummy of the operation.  She would go into the bank to cash the fraudulent money orders.  Well, she was the one that got arrested.  My grandmother (Kim’s mother) was the one that took care of me for the six months that my mother was in prison.

For now, I am going to leave this here.  Thank you to all of my readers and the wonderful support that you have given with your warm thoughts and comments.

~Respectfully, Phoenix