Transitions

quote about looking back

Well, it looks as if I may have some more time on my hands than I expected. I am not sure what God has in store for me but for some reason I am not scared. I think that I am getting the kick in the butt that I need to get some things done in the name of procrastination! My job has been eliminated due to funds so I am going to have to figure out something.

I sure wish that I was the Keri here that had her whole life ahead of her and knew then what I do now!

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Keri’s last chapter

silouhet of profile of woman

Keri’s last chapter…. Or at least  an experiment, starting from the end and going forward….

After reconnecting, Keri was wary. But slowly let down her guard. Though there was never an innocent place for them to land. They said  everything and more. All the things that they ever wanted to say after a lifetime of not being able to.  It was almost like going under water and gasping for air as they hit the surface, taking a breath and going under over and over again. Trying not to respond.  Not wanting to hurt anyone. Weaning themselves, from the connection.  Most of their contact was through sporadic writing.  It was hard to stop.  A year would go by and then one or the other would break the hiatus with a bit of news. His dad died, his wife died, Keri’s friend died, there was always something, always a reason to reach out to the other, and maybe always would be, until God forbid, one of them died.

Keri knew now, that  she’d been deeply in love with the boy,  at least as much as a young girl could be, and recently had come to terms with the fact that her love for Jack the man, seemed to be convoluted with all the memories of Jack the boy.

Though through the intensity of their exchange her heart seemed to explode, Saying things she was afraid to say before but having nothing to lose now. It was empowering and in the beginning she was ruthless. Jack had no idea how crystal clear her memories would be. He’d found her first. From what he could tell, it was apparent that she was married with a family. He told himself that he was going to just ask for forgiveness and move on. Nothing more. But she surprised him by letting him into her life a little more than he’d hoped for. At first the exchange was very guarded and it pained him to know that she feared him. But slowly she began to share memories and he told her that “this time” IT would be about her, that he could take it.

For several months their exchange was lost in a fantasy, when they talked or wrote, they both imagined the younger versions of one another. It was hard to grasp the reality of what their relationship had become. Keri worked non-stop on her book the first year after they’d stopped the contact. And then, something just died inside of her. The need to write about it seemed to lessen. The last time she’d heard his voice gave her a sad panicked feeling, much like when she was a girl, trying to break up with the boy she’d loved so much. In a time she felt that there’d been no place to run.

Now she felt unsettled. Needing  a place to land to write and remember. And so she wrote….

computer2

Why haven’t I learned to trust my gut? My first punch of intuition? Why didn’t I run like the wind like I did the last time we saw each other when I was so much younger and afraid of you? Did you know that  I hid from you? That I hated you? And yet I loved you, she typed  in agony. She stopped suddenly and clicked print. And read. She printed another and another page and crossed things out and added things and all at once she was inspired and for the first time began really writing.

siloette of writer standing up

Dear Readers Thank you for Following! Please find me at: http://dianereedwiter.wordpress.com

journals

Dear “Readers”

You know who you are when I say that I feel that you have become more than readers but… “forever friends” through this excercise of sharing my journals. I have watched those of you read and comment throughout this project and I am forever grateful. I GET how time consuming it is to stick with something like this and I hope to someday figure out a way to pay you all back!

This idea was brought to life by my talented and published author friend Debbie:  http://dgkayewriter.com/ who has mentored me through it all as she has published one book and in the throws of introducing another! Thank you Deb!!! Whether you want the credit or not! It was very therapeutic and hopefully it has given me some good material for my own book with a whole different twist that I probably wouldn’t have thought of without your suggestion!

writing just hand view

If you have been following me through the 70+ entries I have made here I will never be able to tell you how full my heart is that you faithfully have gone on this daily journey with me, chronicling my journal entries. My purpose for this blog was to allow those who ask…. “Why did you stay?” A peek into the convoluted and raw emotions that someone going through abuse feels. Though the question may be rhetorical and you never expected a response. THIS account is as much of an explanation as I might hope to give. It is not just one thing. It is a bundle of things that cause those of us who have been abused to remain with our abusers and give second chance after second chance. It is not to berate someone for staying but to climb into their situation with them and to help them feel not so alone.

If you are just finding this blog, you might want to go back to the very beginning to find the story of Keri and Jack to understand. It has taken me a little over a half a year to get it written. It is written for all to see how subtley we can lose pieces of ourselves trying to save someone else.

It is also hopefully a wake up call for those who might see themselves still in their own relationships, still giving second chances. My story is not over. My abuser came back years later to find me and ask for forgiveness. I need to still figure out a way to sensitively share that part of my story. It is a crazy web we weave…. in the choices we make. Even later in life. We can excuse our youth as being inexperienced and innocent as we dumbly give our power away. But I was blindsided that this person still had power over me to almost throw away everything I’d built one more time.

Abuse is all relative. We never really get over the past. But we can be empowered by the lessons we learn and even be glad for the mistakes we make if they cause us to grow.

Love you all,

Keri

aka http://dianereedwiter.wordpress.com

PS: I will return here from time to time to write the poetry I need for my book. When I write it on my other blog. People get confused and think that it is something I am going through NOW. Kind of another reason I created this blog. I needed a place to go to still find the pain and write about it. A place where people who know me here would understand. But to not confuse people in my current blog. So I “WILL” be back to write the poetry that I will include in my book so don’t unfollow me just yet!

xoxo

k

quote about moving on

#62 YOU CAN’T HAVE ME NOW

praying man B&w

I am lost in your shadow

as I bathe in your tears.

You can’t have me now

so stop following me here!

future past present signs

I won’t be charmed

by your pleas and your sighs.

For my tears have cleared

the sight in my eyes.

You captured my heart

like  birds who fly into their cages.

bird cage

your words were like whispers

upon old folded pages.

folded page A

Your love haunted me

until I finally gave in,

But it was too late for us,

for… we began at the end.

Keri London

1977

#58 The Storm

journals

Dear Journal,

You are my witness that I tried. I tried so hard. You were the ONLY one that I ever told ANYTHING to! I wanted to protect Jack from himself. And I was embarrassed. So embarrassed that anyone would ever know any of what I have put up with. I never wanted to tell anyone because what if we got back together and all of it was out there? Well, there is NO chance of that NOW. I know that Jack thinks that I talk to people too much and try to get everyone’s advice. I never talked about our fights or Jack’s temper. EVER! But this time, I’m not sure what happened. I guess I kind of feel like if I tell someone what has been going on, I won’t go back. And Oh my dear friend, my faithful little journal, I KNOW I won’t go back this time. Are you applauding me?

So much has happened since I last wrote in you.  I think that anger is a kind of a key that has allowed me to shut that door. Instead of mourning what I have lost and all those broken promises, I feel a relief that I never felt before. I used to sit home and cry after a fight and think about all of our  plans.  NOW you better believe me, he is begging me to set a date. He said that any day would be fine with him. Even Tommorow! It has been exactly one month since he threw me out of “his” house. He has been sitting outside of the entrance to my neighborhood almost every night the last two weeks since school started again. He has parked next to my car at the school where I work so I had to talk to him and after my classes at night at Harbor College. I can’t tell my dad because he would kill him and I don’t want my dad to go crazy because he would if he knew what has been happening. I am protecting my dad. Not Jack.

steering wheel shot

The other day I was at Lindsey’s house and Jack called me there. He told me to go look in my car. I didn’t know what to expect. Even though it was sunny, it was freezing. I ran out with my barefeet because I didn’t know what he might have done. Well, he showed me his true colors. I found Switezer meowing inside my cold car. He said “I don’t want him.” That was the first time that I have cried since I stopped crying after the first week. I didn’t know what to do. Larry ended up calling right when I was having a melt down and Lindsey told him what Jack had just done and Larry asked for my phone number and told me that he might know someone that will take him because I know that my mom won’t let me have him. This is just like Jack. Begging me to take him back and then getting mad and doing something like this when he doesn’t get his own way. I haven’t softened at all. I am glad that he keeps getting mad and doing stupid things because it just reminds me that I deserve better.  I can’t believe that I ever loved him. The thing that surprises me, is that no one was surprised. They knew what was happing all along. I thought that I was fooling everyone.  I’m pretty sure that I hate him now. THIS was the last straw. But it’s not just about the cat. There are so many other things that happened besides the obvious; literally THROWING me out of the house. It is so over.

cat in car

 

#35

 

Dear Journal,

We had the make up class at Alesse Marshals, my modeling school. Jack paid for it. He has been so attentive and sweet. He said that he would pay for my portfolio which I have to have to complete the class and go on jobs. I am not sure what I want to do.

portfolio2

 

But I mean who doesn’t want to be a model? At first I signed up because I wanted to do it for me but now it seems as if Jack really wants me to pursue it. He has been complimenting me a lot lately and said it has been well worth the money. I am not sure what that is supposed to mean. So is he saying that I looked bad before? Once when we were having a fight, he told me that he had dragged me from the gutter and that everything that I am now is because of him. Now that is a back handed compliment if I ever heard one. I mean, my braces were eventually going to come off and my skin was eventually going to clear up and my hair was going to eventually grow out from the Sun IN that I’d kind of fried it with the summer before we met.

combing blonde hair

I think that the modeling school idea was good for me because I have gained confidence. But I also have been asked out by a few guys which I never mentioned to Jack because he doesn’t like it when the guys look at me at the gliderport when we go soaring so I am not sure telling him would be a good idea. Of course I just say no thanks and that I have a boyfriend. The crazy thing is that every minute of every waking hour, I am trying to think up things to make Jack happy.

lake arrowhead cabin

 

Last weekend we went up to Lake Arrowhead and rented a cabin. We had such a good time.  Even though it is fall now, it was still warm and early the next morning we rented a little sailboat and went out on the middle of the lake. Jack brought me by a home that a friend named Larry from High School used to own. It was  beautiful. We sailed right up to it’s dock. It sat on a hill of green grass and it’s front yard was the lake! We walked around the little town and bought firewood and made a fire in the fireplace that night. It was so romantic. We bought a little baby jar of peanutbutter and a loaf of bread and ate sandwiches in front of the fire and lay in each others arms.

fireplace feet

 

It’s different now since that day we went soaring. He is so sorry and  I told him that I forgave him but I also told him that if it ever happened again, it would be the last time he’d ever touch me in anyway. It would be over. I told him that in my heart, I believed in forever when I promised him that I would never leave.  But in my head, I knew that our relationship wouldn’t survive another time like that. The other day, I was doing something and I looked in the mirror.  I mean really looked in a way I hadn’t for a long time. And my reflections stared back as if she were someone else, and the look in her eyes was almost challenging, as if she were asking…. “What are you doing, why are you staying?”

in the mirror

 

Boundaries Journal #26

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 I got up the next morning and went to school. I think maybe I’d slept two hours. I stood in the shower crying. My head pounded as I dried my hair and got dressed.  I could barely think about anything while I was there. I only had two classes and then my journal class but I don’t check in with Mrs. Walker till next week.  So I could have left early and almost got in my car to drive to the hospital a million times. But it had been raining all day and I wasn’t used to driving on the freeways in the rain. And it just gave me more time to really think about everything. I knew that Jack would be thinking that I was just like everyone else running away from him when things got tough. Even though he “literally” drove me away. I realized what he was doing before we even fought about it. But I just couldn’t be the one this time to give in. I’d felt so stupid chasing him around the streets of Montery Park until I was convinced that he was actually trying to lose me. But I was prepared and nailed him when he finally tried to make the excuses that I’d already known he’d make.

spitfite green in rain

Finally last night as I pulled into my neighborhood his car was parked just inside the entrance where it was impossible to miss him. I stopped because I just didn’t want to make a scene in front of my house and my dad was home this week and well, he would never tolerate the way Jack tends to get. I pulled in front of him and he got out and I moved my books and he got in. I waited for him to start talking. And he started in right away about how I just fell off the face of the planet but how it was to be expected because he couldn’t count on anyone in his life.

couple in a car

I have discovered in dealing with Jack, when he gets like that, the best way to handle him, is to just apologize and sympathize with how he is feeling. NOT this time. I’d had it. And I’d had time to do plenty of thinking. There’d been a time when I’d even jumped on his car’s hood crying when he screeched away, trying to get him to stay and talk. Never again. I was ready.  I put my hand up to stop him. This time he was going to hear me out.

sad girl in a car

I told him that I didn’t even want to talk about what happened when I was supposed to be following him. I told him that he knew exactly what he was doing and that I didn’t know where I was going and he lost me. He started to interrupt and I held up my hand and he actually stopped talking and let me continue which I have to admit kind of empowered me. I said that I knew that it was an uncomfortable situation with his mom and that he’d always dealt with it himself and that it why when he’d come home, he’d lose his the girl and the semester. I told him that if he got it together this time, I was in it for the long haul and he wasn’t going to lose the girl. All of a sudden, he just relaxed and reached for me but I held firm and again held up my hand and he rolled his eyes and I smiled and kind of laughed. And told him that I was serious that he really did need to get his act together. That I knew he lost me because he didn’t know what else to do. But it hurt my feelings and he’s lucky I am smart enough to figure it out. But I meant it. He needed to get his act together. Then I let him in for the hug and it was different than any we’d ever shared before. It was as if we’d both grown up a little.

kissing in car

Dear Journal #22 New Jobs

journall

Dear Journal,

I am sorry. It has been a while since I’ve posted. Even though I have made a deal with Mrs. Walker to try to keep up with you daily, she said that as long as I had a certain number of pages she would give me credit so the next few entries will be catching up. Sorry about that! And just so you know… I am not just coming back for the credit… I really have begun to enjoy my time writing here.

A+

I wasn’t sure how I was going to gracefully move out of my job at Amber Oil even though summer was half over, but I got a job at a dental office in Hawthorne. It was short-lived. It was at a clinic which was in a pretty bad area. Not that Amber Oil is,  in the best area, in the industrial section East of Los Angeles but I was so surprised when I stopped at a grocery store with a friend that I’d made there on the way back  to work after lunch, and there were armed guards outside the doors! So after a few month I left that job. I saw the writing on the wall there anyway. The turn over was crazy.

scroc dental

 

I actually had an interesting call the other day from Betty, one of my mom’s customers turned friends. Okay so let me explain…When I was about eleven, my mom started doing art shows and ever since I was very small, she’s always done something artsy. But my dad especially liked to walk around at different local art shows on his weekends off. He works a lot of hours but he always seemed to relax walking around looking at artwork and talking to artists. So he bought my mom some paints and she began painting these paintings of kids and forest scenes that actually were pretty good. She gave a few as gifts and began getting orders. So once my dad asked the organizer of one of the larger art shows how to get in and got my mom in. He built her A-frames for her exhibits and helped her set up. Soon she began having customers come to the house and that is where I met Betty.

artshow1

Betty was a good customer and purchased several paintings for her kid’s rooms by the time I met her. Usually, I’d run in and run out and my mom would call me in to meet a customer. I’d roll my eyes and run down the hall to her paint room and paint a smile on my face and shake their hands and take a minute for small talk and excuse myself but something made me stick around that day. This was probably about a year before I met Jack because I’d just gotten my license. Anyway,  I stayed to play with Betty’s little girl Christina. She was about six or seven and couldn’t talk, not one word. Well, she could say no (smile) but she was so smart and I was so intrigued. Betty told me that Christina had something called Aphasia and that she was going to a wonderful school in Buena Park that was teaching her to talk.

balloon little girl

I told her that I’d be glad to babysit sometime. I am not sure why. I was way past the babysitting place in my life. But there was something that drew me to that little girl. So I began taking Christina out on outings. We’d go to the park or to the library and I’d sit with her at story time. Or I’d take her to the mall and we’d ride the merry-go-round and then one day I bought her a balloon.  She kept pointing at it and I kept asking her if she wanted it and she kept nodding and I kept telling her to tell me what she wanted. Finally she said B-A-L-L-O-O-N!!! I freaked out! I was so happy! I bought her three! and we counted them and we talked about what color they were. She loves blue so she pointed to two blue ones so we talked about how there were two blue ones! And when I brought her home I said ….”Christina, tell your mom what you’ve got!” And she held them behind her back even though they were flying RIGHT over her head and  said… “bawooon” and Betty looked at me and cried. Later that month Betty took me to Christina’s school and she worked it out for me to volunteer two days a month during my sophomore year. (That is why I have so many credits and along with the ones I got from SCROC last year, can graduate so early.) Well, she called a few days ago and said that they missed me and they let her call to tell me that they wanted to offer me a real paying job working in the Pre-K class next year when I graduate in January!!!!

When Jack and I first met and we were getting to know each other,  I told him about Christina and the school and he seemed so proud of me and was even supportive about me wanting to explore going to school to become a Speech Therapist but we never really talked about it again. And then one time, when we ran into them at the market he was so sweet with Christina and it was my turn to be proud.  Betty even caught my eye and winked at me, as if she was telling me that she thought he was a good guy. But when I called him all excited about my job offer he got real quiet.