When we moved back in with our mom we were living on Whyte Ave and just a block to my school. It was summer time and we played outside in the garage all the time, it was our fort. When life was getting too much us kids would go out there and basically hide. Mom was not very active in our lives we were a paycheck to her and that was all. She could say she loved us and I do think she did but in a very perverted way.
Sleeping has become a major problem. Mom would sleep all day, would not get up to look after the young children, not saying I was old. She would just stay in her room and read and sleep. I remember laundry day. We had a old ringer washer, so we washed the clothes then put them in the tub to rinse then put them through the ringer and out on the line they went. This was to make sure we had clean clothes for school, or just to change.
Mom decided to bring Harvey back into our lives as she could not be without a man. Not long after he came into our lives mom ended up in the hospital for a nervous breakdown. During this time we had a homemaker to look after us. You have to remember this is only a few months after we were back in mom’s care. We loved Susie, she was amazing we did not have to do all the chores we were doing. we just needed to clean our room and help with dishes. This was just luxury to us.
During the time that mom was in the hospital Harvey was in our life. He would be lurking around the house and Susie did not like it. Susie sensed there was something wrong with this man. His grey hair, beady blue eyes, thin, not too tall and a viscous grin on his face. Susie’s intuition was right on the money and she watched us kids like a hawk, but Tammy was left vulnerable to this man. I can only speculate what she was thinking, maybe that Tammy was older and could protect herself or she would tell someone if something did happen. Perhaps Susie thought it better to sacrifice one and save the rest. Having been told that he would not be in our life again, when he came back and mom let him, I felt very angry and the betrayal was deep.
I remember coming home after school and Tammy was in her room, laying on her bed and Harvey was sitting at the kitchen table with this smug look on his face. I knew what happened, and I could not prevent it. Tammy was his target and he would go right after her. During this time we would go out to the lake and I remember watching Tammy looking out of the window, wondering what she was thinking. Was she thinking that it was a mistake coming back to mom, or was she thinking that the lies that were told by the adults would forever condemn us to a life of pain and suffering.
When mom got out of the hospital her behaviour did not change. She still went to bed and stayed there. Looking after us was not her priority, she wanted what she wanted. I am not sure if Tammy told her that Harvey was abusing her or what happen but she was sent away again. I was thinking my sister is gone again, what did she do???? I asked and was told that mom could not handle her and that she was involved with a gang. I did not believe what she said it was just a excuse to send Tammy away again. Here I was once again fighting this battle on my own, for the good of the younger kids.