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Chapter 1 When It All Began I   don’t   know   when   it   started   because   it   has   always   been   there.   The   fear,   the dread,   the   loathing.   It   took   a   awhile   for   me   to   realize   I   had   lost   the   ability   to scream.      My   power   was   taken   from   me.   I   was   unable   to   talk   or   communicate. The silence was deafening, suffocating… I   have   memories   that   are   like   photograph,   a   picture   here,   a   picture   there.   I wasn’t   a   special   kid.   Kinda   tall   and   skinny   for   my   age   but   with   the   face   of   an angel.   I   always   knew   I   couldn’t   belong   to   “him”.   I   looked   different   from   the rest,   really   curly   hair,   black-coloured   eyes.   All   of   them   looked   the   same   except me.   They   were   all   part   of   the   group.   They   belonged.      All   I   knew   was   that   I   was always on the outside looking in. I wasn’t them, I didn’t fit in. I   was   just   two   when   they   said   it   happened   first.   The   hatred   just   couldn’t   stay in.   I   didn’t   know   at   the   time   why   he   hated   me.   It   was   just   always   there.   I   was told   that   I   had   made   a   mistake   and   was   doing   something   “he”   didn’t   like. Then   it   came,   the   slap,   and   my   head   hitting   the   floor.   I’m   sure   at   that   age   I couldn’t   have   understood   why   “he”   was   so   violent.   I   soon   understood   that “he” didn’t want to be around me and that I needed to stay away from him. I   remember   being   left   alone   a   lot   as   a   young   child,   not   totally   by   myself, because   my   sister   was   with   me.   We   would   play   together   a   lot   and   get   into trouble   during   the   day.   My   mother   covered   a   lot.      And   my   mother’s   mother.   I didn’t   know   her   that   well   but   I   heard   that   she   stood   up   for   me   a   lot.   The   only thing   I   remember   about   her   is   her   sitting   me   up   on   the   counter   and   giving   me my    first    beer.        I    don’t    think    I    was    older    than    three    but    I    remember    it.    I remember    being    baby-gated    in    a    bedroom    with    all    the    other    kids    to    be “watched.” I   remember   just   living   for   the   moments   of   being   away   from   “him.”      But   it   was the   nights   that   brought   terror   and   fear.   Being   terrified   of   being   left   alone   with “him”.   Like   a   recurring   nightmare,   I   couldn’t   escape   it.   The   pain,   the   shame, feeling   like   everyone   could   see   it.   Torn   panties,   the   pain,   things   wrong   with me    that    I    couldn’t    explain.    An    overwhelming    feeling    of    someone    always watching    me.    My    mother    was    gone    a    lot    during    that    time    of    night.    She worked   as   often   as   she   could,   which   got   her   out   of   the   house   at   those   times. Maybe   she   knew   and   didn’t   want   to   face   it.   Maybe   she   didn’t   want   to   be   with “him”   either   and   was   trying   to   stay   away.   All   of   this   went   into   creating   what would happen when I was four. I had reached the end of my rope. I   had   this   small   pain   in   my   chest   that   wouldn’t   go   away.   I   don’t   know   when   it started   but   it   never   stopped.   It   was   a   hurting   that   started   out   small   then   it kept   getting   bigger   and   bigger.   It   was   a   pain   that   felt   like   I   had   an   open   wound that   was   ugly   and   nasty   and   no   one   could   see   it.   I   thought   someone   would notice   but   no   one   ever   said   anything   about   it.   No   one   would   help   it   or   try   to make   me   feel   better.   So   I   thought   if   I   could   just   die,   the   pain   would   go   away.   I needed   a   way   to   stop   the   pain.   I   wasn’t   sure   how   to   stop   it,   it   just   needed   to stop. One   day   I   was   out   in   the   yard   with   my   sister.   We   were   running   and   playing when   all   of   a   sudden   we   ran   by   the   the   water   meter   plate   and   I   spotted   some mushrooms   growing.   She   thought   we   could   eat   them,   but   went   inside   to   ask our   mother   if   we   could.   I   just   stood   there   looking   at   them   while   she   was   gone. I   didn’t   really   like   mushrooms   so   it   didn’t   seem   important   to   me.   She   came running     back     and     said,     “Mom     said     don’t     touch     them     they     are     very poisonous.”   The   minute   I   heard   that   I   shouldn’t   eat   them   because   they   were poisonous,   I   knew   I   had   found   my   way   out.   I   sat   down   in   front   of   them   and deliberately   and   determinately   ate   about   five   Death   Angel   mushrooms   that day.   You   see,   even   at   that   young   age   I   had   made   up   my   mind   that   dying   was better   than   living.   In   my   very   young   mind   I   could   only   feel   the   pain   and   felt   I had    no    one    to    help.    The    way    I    got    to    that    point    was    there    were    things happening   in   my   life   that   at   four   years   old   I   had   no   way   of   reasoning   as   to   why or   how   to   escape   it.   To   this   day   I   cannot   figure   out   how   a   small   child   being rushed    to    the    emergency    room    because    they    deliberately    tried    to    kill themselves   could   be   an   accident.   The   doctor   didn’t   even   say   a   word.   No   one ever   looked   into   it.   They   just   pumped   my   stomach,   kept   me   over   night   for observation,   and   then   sent   me   home.   I   remember   my   mother   saying   when she   got   the   bill,   that   I   didn’t   need   to   be   costing   them   any   money.   She   also   told me   that   I   should   feel   very   bad   about   making   them   have   to   pay   for   it.   That really stuck with me. I   began   to   really   feel   like   I   was   all   alone.   The   gap   began   to   open   between   me and   my   brothers   and   sisters.   They   began   to   notice   it   too.   I   continued   on shrinking   farther   and   farther   into   the   abyss.   I   became   very   introverted   and mute.    I    thought    if    I    didn’t    speak    no    one    could    see    what    I    was    hiding.    I wouldn’t   speak   to   anyone   unless   I   absolutely   had   to.   I   had   become   one   of   the invisible   people.   I   lived   my   life   this   way   and   fought   the   pain   that   was   getting bigger and bigger.
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An   excerpt   from   the   book,   Into   The   Valley .”      Be   sure   to   read   previews   from the other books on this site. You can order your copy of this book here .
“Depression is the inability to construct a future.”
Rollo May