Our mother did a huge amount of moving, I really do not recall how many times in a year we would move, I do not know why she just didn’t get one of those gypsy wagons. Tyra was born in Manning, I was born in Edmonton Royal Alexandra Hospital. The youngest new member of our family was born in Barhead, previously on another occasion. Our Mother did go back and forth to her old haunts time and again, so even if it was only a few places she would move back and forth multiple times.
Just an interesting observation to show how much she moved in Alberta. By the time we got to Barhead , were we are at this point in our lives. We had already been to Swan hills, Manning, Fairview,Peace river, and maybe some other places that I do not recall. This is just to show one tactic our mother used to stay as step ahead of social services. By continually getting new social workers, since she was a Welfare mother, it was difficult for social workers to get a clear picture of what was happening to the children. This should have been a red flag, but apparently it wasn’t. I suppose a lot of welfare families move a lot?
The only real stability was the three years that we spent with our foster parents. Even though we moved so much, we did it so often it became the new normal, although the changing of schools so often wrecked havoc on all aspects of our lives. Our self esteem suffered, our social skills suffered, even more than they already were, our academic learning suffered, and our sense of self became even more non existent.
At this time Tyra was around the age of five and I was about 8 years old. I remember I was a modest child. Looking back at it I wonder was it modest or an attempt to protect my self. The reason why I bring this up is because of an event I remember very clearly.
One summer evening, the nights were so long it was almost like day time, but it was in fact around eight o’clock p:m. Tyra and I were already in bed. We did not have pj’s we slept in our underwear and nothing else. I never really felt comfortable this way, but had little choice. I always felt vulnerable not free, just wearing panties to sleep. A couple and their two young boys came to Visit mom and her current lover. The boys were sent out to play on a old tractor he had in his yard for decoration.
I recall mom hollering at us in the bed room asking us three girls if we wanted to go out and play. Tyra and Tanya were both up and ready to go play out side, even though they only had their panties on and a diaper. They were so young it didn’t really matter. However, for me I was 8 and it did matter..a lot. I remember hollering back to my mom yes please, just give me a minute to put on a shirt. I recall my mother hollering “you do not need to put on a shirt, just go or stay in your room; your choice!” I stayed in my room looking out the window at the other children playing, wishing I was comfortable enough to go play out side with no shirt on.
I could hear the adults talking, about what I am not sure, but after awhile Mom relented and let me put on a shirt and go play out side. I remember glancing down and side ways at the visitors sitting at the table, and feeling so ashamed that I was not brave enough to play with no shirt on like the other children. My poor little heart was breaking because modesty meant so much to me, the reasons why we all can understand. I did get to go outside and play though. I laughed and had fun, and for a while was just a child nothing less nothing more, it was wonderful.
The first Time I ever remember meeting Two of our Uncles, that were very close to our mom, was when they just showed up on our door step. I thought they were exciting and so tall =). Mom got a baby sitter and they all went out. The babysitter was so much fun! We all danced to Jolene by dolly Parton like we were professional dancers haha. We had a big window that acted like a mirror. I knew people could see our antics but I didn’t care I loved dancing!! I love music too all kinds of music!! Mom and her entourage came home and my sister and I hid behind a chair. They were all so sloppy drunk =(. One of my Uncles spied us still up and said he was going to give us a whooping. The baby sitter stopped him and Tyra and I ran screaming to our bedroom, huddled in fear waiting for him to come give us a whooping. Instead of that happening My uncle and mom started fist fighting instead.
The violence was so vicious and prevalent in our home. Only the most Violent become the predator while the children become the prey. So sad, and so very wrong.
I recall mom calling to me to the kitchen table, I stood in fort of her as she told me she was pregnant and what gender did I want. she asked me with all my siblings what Gender I wanted, it was our thing=) I remember this with fondness. she said”This is the last one, so chose wisely.” I thought for a few minutes and in my heart I wanted a Baby Brother So with out any ado, I said, “I want a Baby Brother, a little Boy”. thinking back on this maybe this was my mothers way of atoning for the fact that she destroyed my chances of ever having children of my own. She was vicariously sharing her pregnancy with me. I sure did a lot of motherly duties.
The day that our Mother told her man she was pregnant, but obviously with another mans child, since he had a vasectomy, I was present. As protection or a witness or what I really do not know but she used me, which was not abnormal for her. She told me to slid a gold watch across to the man as she was telling him it was over. He was so angry!! He slapped his hand down and I pulled mine back just in time so it did not get caught between the watch and his hand. The hurt and anger in that mans eyes was unbearable to watch so I just looked down and stood silently. After a time mom told me to go start packing up our things, I dutifully complied, as was my way. The word NO did not exist. for me.
So once again We are off to a new Destination, Edmonton, hope to see you all there when we get there.
LOVE is Poetry in Motion (A thank you to one of our followers, i’m sure they know who they are) A huge thank you too all who are on this Journey with us, It is so greatly appreciated!!!!
After the incident of being in the hospital all I remember was walking to school with my teacher, when it was really cold. On the way there I would see all the trailers that were in the trailer court have these long ice cycles on them, it looked so cool I remember thinking. Then some of the times I would try and get one to suck on. I remember my older sister coming to pick me up from class, she wasn’t that happy about picking up her little sister but did it all the same.
During this time I would have this reoccurring dream of being in a house fire and the fire fighters could not get me. I could see them out the window I was banging on but no one would come to get me. Did I wake after the dream I do not recall, but this dream haunted me for years after. In asking some professors about the dream they said as a young child I felt trapped. Being the adult that I am today I would not think children at the age of 5 or 6 would be feeling that way, but obviously it does happen.
My bio mom had another boyfriend that we were living with he was a great guy from what I remember. I can recall the Christmas that I received my first doctors play kit. After that time I always said that I wanted to be a doctor. Haven’t quite made it there yet but maybe one day.
Then the time came that bio mom was bored with the man she was with and we decided that she wanted to cheat on him and she did. This we all know because she got pregnant with our little brother Trevor. This was not a good thing as mom did not tell the man she was living with the issue and caused a fight between the two of them. All I remember was my mom had a black eye and was told to call the police. That was the last time that I saw that good man, what a mistake my bio mom made.
As usual we would pack up and move away from the situation, so my bio mom could hide the problems that were caused in the other areas she lived. The issue being is that she never learnt from those mistakes, she kept making the same ones which makes you think she did it on purpose. Maybe she did, but why?
My sister and I think about that question everyday, why would you put your children in dangerous situations that you know they would be at risk for abuse. We just come to the conclusion that maybe she was a sociopath and liked causing pain to her children. Tammy and I discuss this at length and still baffles us to this day.