Our family wasn't exactly the “American Dream”, some would say it was more like an “American Nightmare”. We didn’t live in a pristine house with a white picket fence in an affable, family-oriented town; not by a longshot. We resided in a cramped hamlet in North Carolina by the name of Mecca, a place with a mind-boggling population of 204. The type of people who lived in that god-forsaken place were either debilitated and had lived there since it was a diminutive farm borough, or were adolescent parents with no where else to go. The houses there were predominantly duplexes like our own; essentially pulverized by time with chipped, dull navy paint and cobalt chain link barriers between each unholy household, effectively molding a prison-like atmosphere and tension between fellow inmates. This is where I had called home for fourteen years, fourteen years of pain, struggle and anguish.
I grew up too fast… Ever since I was four years old I had always taken care of Carl, my younger brother. With his crystal blue eyes and flaxen-blonde hair, he reminded me of my mother. My mother Judith, after whom I was named, was an affectionate, amiable women who twenty-two years ago began to age swiftly, all because of my father Robert Carrison.
In London, England twenty-two and a half years ago, my father married a beautiful woman: my mother. He charmed her with his suave looks, comical personality and his desire for a better future from what they had known in England. It was 1928 and the streets of England were rugged, malicious and cruel, no one knew comfort except the rich and my parents were not of wealthy families. My mother’s judgement of my father was amiss however. He shrouded a corrupted side of his seemingly benevolent nature. After moving to the U.S., having two children, and being married for 7 years, he knew she was stymied. Slowly, bit by bit he began to unfold the impeccable facade he meticulously created to disguise his true personality; masochistic and violent.
It was too late for my beloved mother, he threatened the lives of her and his own children if she so much as attempted to disclose his wrongs to anyone. He was abusive towards Carl, Mother and I, smacking us straight across our faces, throwing us against walls, anything he could do to hurt us or our spirits. He sinned and sinned, it was undoubted by all that he was on a train ride to straight to hell, and he was determined to take us with him.
It is summer of 1950, and I was wearing my torn up, amber, flowered dress with black stockings to cover my legs. It was a boiling day at 86º fahrenheit, and I desired to take the wretched stockings off, but I could not. My gaunt legs were bruised so horribly that they were solely a dark shade of mauve, so my father did not allow me to show them in order to hide the fact that it was him that coated my legs in bruises. He was a crafty man, sly and cunning, no one would have even guessed what he did behind locked doors.
Off into the distance I heard...