Note from JK: The following is a letter written by the little girl (as an adult) whose childhood abuse I partially described in the previous posting – “A Legitimate Rape Question.” As in that article, I have used pseudonyms to protect people’s privacy. The letter addresses the question, “Can victims of sexual terrorism find true love?”
Dear Mom & Dad,
Well it has been nineteen years and what a ride!
There we were, on a beautiful spring day, sitting on the porch at your house in Payson. Dad made a call to someone he called Raymond to ask if he could meet us for dinner. Dad said he was a poor man with a deformed back. Well, I figured what harm could it do? Afterall I was poor, and I had a deformed back! Dinner at El Rancho Restaurant sounded like an innocent enough night out.
I had been feeling pretty ill from physical and mental stress. I was underweight, depressed, afraid of life as I knew it. Well, we went to the restaurant, and we waited…..After a bit we thought that maybe he wasn’t going to show, so we ordered.
Two men were near our booth talking, one of them a very big man, with a strong voice (Later I was told that man was a radio disc jockey). The other man was very, very handsome! Smooth voice, slender body, mature looking, a mustache that reminded me of my favorite cowboys, Doc Holiday. I tried not to stare, not knowing this was the man I was about to meet and spend the rest of my life with.
I was completely flustered that he sat down right next to me!!!! I couldn’t breathe. I looked at his profile and saw his chiseled face, black hair, slight receding hair-line, and handsome as ever, eyes that were like that of a Greek god that swept away the innocence of any thoughts I was thinking.
I looked for the deformity in his back, of course, and it was not as I had been told. As a matter of fact, this man had the body of an athlete. I swept my nose across his path to smell him without being noticed, and he smelled deliciously of musk, amber, and the smell that must be what they say attracts a man to a woman and vice-versa. I became so nervous and suddenly realized I hadn’t done anything with myself to show that I was even in existence. I slowly became more comfortable and began to converse.
After dinner we retreated to Mom and Dad’s place. I could see Mom approved and Dad was quick to give me a glance of approval too. The three of us went up into the tree house out back, the most beautiful tree house ever, to this day, been up in. We shared stories, and we laughed. We shared things in the night air, things about ourselves that would forever stay with us.
Mom decided to go inside and await Dad’s arrival for the night. Dad had set this all up. He had known that Raymond was a gentle and beautiful man. He loved Raymond. He had gotten to know Raymond before I did. When Raymond said his goodbye’s and prepared to go home to the little trailer he shared with his big dog Dakota, he started to walk away.
I walked him out, and asked him if I could hug him. He looked so surprised, yet turned to me, put his strong arms around me. I smelled his scent again. Wow!!!! I went to bed that night with the feelings I had never had before. Dad came into the room with a smile, approaching the bed to hug me goodnight. He asked me if I enjoyed the night, if I liked Raymond, a smile on his face, and then we both laughed in synchronicity.
I told him I was in love for the first time in my life, that I was scared, that I was happy. “What do I do?” I asked him.
His reply was perfect, “Just be yourself. Just let it happen. If it’s meant to be, it will be.” He turned to me as he left the room and said “I love you. I’m so glad to see you happy. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen you smile and laugh like you did tonight. Remember to just be yourself. You are beautiful just the way you are. Take it slow. Let him call you. Don’t chase him. I’ve got a feeling he will be calling you soon. Goodnight my daughter. I love you.”
I looked at him with tears in my eyes, with only joy and an overwhelming sense that my life was going to be changed forever for the better. For once I was alive with a healthy and functional love. Also I felt an exceptional amount of love from a father, a father figure I never had in my life before he married my mother. He was looking out for me.
A beautiful night in March, four people got together and changed the course of my life forever for the better. What a wonderful night. What a great father. What a great mother. What a wonderful man named Raymond that sat down next to me and said, “Hello, I’m Raymond. Nice to meet you.”
He said yes to going to the tree house. He took a chance. We all did. Thank you Dad. Thank you Mom.
You are in both of our hearts tonight, in our memories of that wonderful time, that wonderful night we all connected in a restaurant booth, in a tree house, in this goofy world, . . we had a great experience that will last a lifetime.
How does “Thank you” do justice? I love you forever for all that you give, all that you are, all that you have been to me. Thank you for life as I now know it – happily married, happy with the family we have become.
Happy Anniversary to the four of us!!!!!
We were all there when it happened.
Forever you daughter,
I Love You,