October was the month I was born. The year was 1976. When I look at those numbers, I feel so old. I remember once thinking I could not wait until I was an adult and could get away from this life style. From the time I could remember I was counting down the years until I could move out. I had to escape. Or at least get far enough away from all the crazy, to where it would not rub off on me.
I was a teenager when I started noticing that my mother did not love me the way it was intended. The first sign was when she started working second shift so that she did not have to be around the family. Truth be told it was such a relief off of my shoulders. There was not a day that went by that she was not ill. Just the most unhappy person that you can imagine. I do not doubt that it was tough living with an alcoholic that did not care to hurt your feelings each and every time he seen fit, or to spend a whole paycheck on beer and non sense, instead of buying groceries, and paying the electric.
I will share a story of a typical Friday night, or payday, which ever came first. My dad was a saddle maker, so payday was not always at the end of the week. Whenever he got the saddles done, he got paid. A payday always consist of heading to the line. We lived in a dry county at the time, so he had to drive to the state line to retrieve his case(s) of beer, and liquior. Next stop would be a friends house, or his brother(s). He had a nearly a dozen brothers and only one of them was not an alcoholic. I am not sure what some see as alcholics, but I see it as someone who pisses their money away for alcohol, or on the account of alcohol.
Okay, back to the typical Friday night. If we stopped somewhere and ended up staying until dad was two sheets in the wind, sort of speak, then he would always attempt to make it home before mother did. Many occasions that was not the case. The rides home were very terrifying for me as a child. Sometimes those rides ended up in a ditch. Sometimes they ended up just sitting for long periods of time so he could sober a little. Then the scariest was to find myself at twelve years old behind the wheel. To be honest, I am surprised that we were not found dead. Back then, there was not a seatbelt law, we never wore them. I suppose my dad felt as though we were all invincible.
Here is another typical payday.
My parents had separated, and my dad was seeing someone from another state. We drove, while he was drinking, two hours away, to pick up this girlfriend. While we were in that state, not only did we get the girlfriend, but we ended up bringing back one of my dads brothers, along with some more people. When we pulled up, my mother was there getting some things out of the house. I have no idea what set her off, it could have been a weekday, and she was upset that we were out so late, but she came out of the house with a dough roller, and started whacking people. I know, sounds humorous, But I assure you, Not so much…She tried getting my dad, and probably succeeded, I can not be certain. I know that more than one person was having to hold her, while my dads brother managed to get the dough roller away from her and threw it as far as he could. Before someone was able to get her weapon of choice from her hands, she had started toward my dads girlfriend, who was still sitting in the car. This girlfriend just happen to be pregnant, and I would say about six months along, when her and dad started seeing one another. I seen my mother going toward the car, so I jumped ahead of her, locked the doors to the car and stood back. I can not even remotely explain to you how pissed off that made my mother. She came after me. She grabbed me by the hair, and slung me to the ground. She treated me as though I was some stranger that was in her war path. She called me every curse word she could come up with. I seen hate in my mothers eyes.
I did not want her to get a hold of that woman, because if she had of hurt her, she could have killed that baby. If she had of killed that baby, she would have went to jail. But she did not see me protecting her, she only seen me protecting my dads girlfriend, therefore I chose the girlfriend over her.
Things like this happened often. My family was just a circus of monkeys, still is actually. I can not even fathom how I did not turn out any worse than I did.
A few weeks after that night, my dad and I headed back to the town the girlfriend lived in. Two hour drive. He had been drinking, but it was not a terrible ride. Until………
Driving down the interstate, a truck jack-knifed right in front of us, knocking everything in its rear, all over the road. 5 lanes of traffic cleared in a matter of seconds. I know there was at least a dozen cars hit. It was one of the most terrible things I have seen to date. We were the only car that was not hit by that truck, nor were we impacted by any of the other vehicles that were going all over the road. After we got past that craziness, it started raining. The windshield wipers went out on my dads vehicle, so he was having to manually wipe them. That consisted of him sticking his hand outside of the window and moving the wiper back and forth. We passed a police officer, who seen this action taking place and I assume wanted a closer look. We seen his break lights lighten up so Dad quickly pulled into someones driveway and turned off his headlights. The officer must have seen us pull in the yard, because he went to the store less than a block from that house, and sat there for what seemed to be an hour. Once the officer left, dad tried to back out of the driveway. I say try, because it was not happening. He had actually pulled into someones yard. It had been pouring down rain, and the car did not want to back up. The humiliation I felt, was almost unbearable. Dad went to the door and knocked to let the people know we were stuck, and to see if they would let him use their phone to contact someone to get us out, but no one answered the door. We eventually did in fact get someone to come pull us out. That yard was a muddy mess. I felt so terrible for those people. They were going to wake up to a disaster.
While we are on the dad hating stories, I have another one that is just itching to come from my finger tips.
Yet another ride to a distant land, to where everyone was big and bad while intoxicated. This particular adventure was not so bad getting there because my cousin had ended up in the same place. It made the night less boring. Usually it was just me, sitting around with the grown ups, listening to their filthy mouths, and just waiting for an argument to break out.
On the way home, instead of riding back with my dad, his two brothers and my grandfather, who are all chain smokers sober,I asked if I could ride back with my cousin and her family. They were in a conversion van, so there was plenty of room. There was also a bed in the back, and I would have been able to sleep, seeing it was in the wee hours of the morning. I tried explaining all of this to my father, but he was not having it. I told him that I could not stand all of the smoking in the car, and he became belligerent. He knocked me around a bit, then kicked me in the car. We drove about 20 minutes down the road before I got the nerve to ask my granddad if he could crack a window. I thought dad was asleep. I was wrong. Dad just went crazy and started hitting me wherever he could. He was so drunk that there was not very much force, and I was able to keep his blows from hitting me in the face. Unfortunately this was just an ordinary night.
I have more, but I do not want to bore my followers, so this is TO BE CONTINUED……….