A Letter To My Mother

Hey Mum,

It has been a while since you passed, I know you knew things would be iffy when you left but I bet you thought we would all stick together and be a strong family. Well for a little while we were, we tried our best to be there for each other and keep moving forward but it’s easier saying it then doing it.

I could give you all the details but it’s been twenty months since you’ve passed and a lot has happened in that time. The short story is dad’s remarried, he turned on all us kids and has gone back to his old self, the person he was when we were little kids except now he can’t hit us. His new wife is just with him for his money and the ‘life style’. Dad doesn’t see E much anymore but I think she is used to it now. I managed to get dad to get us two new pups to bribe me to be nice to his new bird. German Shepherds of course one for me one for her. I chose a girl she’s a lot like Gemma. Gemma was with the pups for a few months and much like we guessed went into complete mother mode. She passed away three months ago though and dad refused to pay a penny of her vet bill which was about £1300. Grandma and Grandpa helped though and I was able to pay it off no thanks to him.

B moved out  two months after you died, he moved in with M and hasn’t looked back since. H moved out on her own and breathed a sigh of relief to have dad off her back. I stayed home, I couldn’t leave all the animals just yet, I knew that before I left I had to sell the horses and get them good homes. Home wasn’t home anymore not since you’ve been gone, it’s too eerie without you. It went from being a vibrant loud home to been a deathly quiet house that you had to tiptoe around. Even when the ‘gold digger’ as her nickname became moved in it was like I wasn’t welcome anymore, I was only there to do all the chores around the house and sort out all the animals.

I had finally had it I had long reached my limit and couldn’t stay any longer. Dad used any excuse to shout at me and blame me for things that I didn’t do and get me to do all the work around the farm. He treated the dogs same as always except nothing I said would get him to treat the pups differently. I ended u having to look after and train both pups since ‘gold digger’ had no clue or interest in it. It’s a shame since her pup Oscar is the most obedient affectionate pup with a heart of gold. But he is a tough guy and doesn’t care what attention he gets as long as he gets it, he also will snap at dad if dad doesn’t treat him right so I know he can take care of himself. My girl on the other hand dad had traumatised and is now taking time for her to heal although she is getting there. I know you would be beyond furious with him if you knew the half of what was going on.

So I decided to move and the timing was perfect as dad and ‘gold digger’ were going on a “business trip” which was actually just shopping. But it meant that I had two weeks to sell the horses and leave with Leesi. Grandma and Grandpa were happy to have us and since Dexter died (not long after you) they were happy to have another dog around the house. I was relieved that I made it before dad got back so when he did all I had to do was give him the keys and get out of there. Me and H also left work – yep you heard right. Dad said we had to be super nice and smiley to ‘gold digger’ otherwise we would be fired so we decided to quit.

Living with grandma and grandpa was an eye opener. We learned so much and a few unpleasant realities like how dad turned us all against them (including you) and twisting stories all because they knew the truth. One being that dad didn’t just hit us but you too and has been for many years. The realisation hit us that when you ran away because “you weren’t good enough for the family” was really because he was hitting you and you had had enough. All of us kids don’t understand why you didn’t tell us and when we caught the beginning or end of it you said it was something else. If you had told us the truth we could have helped you. We would have got different jobs and got us out of there and started again.

Living with Grandma and grandpa was a healing process not just for me but Leesi too. They taught her that she could trust people again and that she didn’t have to be afraid anymore. Their home felt like home and it felt safe, I didn’t have to feel scared anymore I could relax and enjoy life. As good as it was living with them it was only a stepping stone so that we could breathe and recuperate before we moved cities and in with H and her cats ( Yes you heard right – she has two cats). We actually managed to get somewhere in the countryside so it’s great for walking Leesi and H’s puppy when she’s able to get one.

It’s not anything special but it’s our place and home. Leesi is doing really well and we are seeing a behaviourist to help her through her fears, she was doing so well until she came into season so it’s on hold for the time being. It’s taking a little bit of time for the cats to get used to her but I’m sure that in no time they’ll be good friends. It’s calming to be here and away from dad but don’t worry we are still in touch with all our other family members. Us siblings have all become a lot closer and we meet up as much as possible.

At times it’s hard to believe what’s happened and how much has changed, it’s difficult to think that you are not around to ask for advice or just for a hug. I know you would be super proud of all us kids I just wish you could see it for yourself. I’m trying to learn how to show my emotions rather than bottle them up – I have improved but still hate showing emotion since I’m so used to having to be the strong one holding it all together while everyone else falls apart.

There are times at night where I having burning pain because of what’s going on and I know that if you were here it would go away and you would help us. You always did what was best for us even if you got in trouble you would do anything for us. I think ,OK I know dad was jealous about that, that you loved us more than him you would always choose us over him because you had such strong motherly instincts. You wanted us all to be happy and to not have any problems or a care in the world. You tried your best to achieve that for us and we are all so grateful for everything that you have done for us. It sounds really bad in writing (unless you know him) but we all – including him at times – wish dad had died instead of you, we would all be so much happier and a stronger family.

I sometimes relive the hospital days, being with you helping you through the pain or at least trying to. The little moments when you came back from the haze the pain or drugs were giving you to become our mum again and let us know it’ll be OK or that you loved us so much. I remember watching you at night hoping you would make it through to another day – always hoping for one more day but then feeling guilty about it because you were in so much pain and you just wanted to die to get away from it. At least you’re not in pain anymore.

But you can’t live in the past no matter how hard you try you have to move forward. There is so much more I want to say but another time. For now, I love you, I miss you but we are moving forward.

Goodbye Mum.

Your little angel, L xx