Chapter 1

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"When something bad happens you have three choices. You can either let it define you, let it destroy you, or let it strengthen you."
I used to have a good life. I was spoiled, loved...wanted. Things were perfect, but then mother got sick. My parents refused to tell me what she was sick with, but I knew she took medicine. The only reason I knew was because it did bad things to her.

Mother started becoming harsher in the words she said. Each day she became less loving towards me. No longer when she tucked me into bed at night would she say," Goodnight ladybug! Sleep well and I will see you in the morning." She stopped kissing my forehead. She stopped telling me I was pretty. Instead, I became lucky if she even remembered to come in my room and murmur a goodnight to me.

On Sundays she stopped making my favorite chocolate chip pancakes, and we no longer had our Wednesday night mother-daughter dates. Six year old me did not understand why she was so cold towards me, but eventually I accepted it. I became okay with the fact I was seemingly unimportant to her now, and eventually I stopped caring.

Father on the other hand was different. He tried for me. He would work long hours, come home tell me I was beautiful and wish me the best night of sleep. In the mornings he would wake me up with a kiss on the head, wish me a good day at school and then head off to work.

Slowly though, he too started ignoring me. He was never at the house as often as he used to be. Although I was young, even I knew he couldn't always be at work. Anytime that I would ask him he would give me a menacing glare, tell me to quit being nosy and to go to my room. That is exactly what I did. I became content in the life I had. I was invisible to everybody. I despised it. I wanted to be noticed, I craved my parents attention yet never received it.

It all changed two years after mother got sick. Things shifted, and were never the same again. I thought the life that I was living was inadequate. Little did I know when I woke up on the gloomy Thursday morning, that when I put my fluffy slippers on (that 8 year old me happened to love) and when I shuffled out of my room, I was walking into a hell that I thought could only ever be imagined. I was wrong.

The oh-so gloomy Thursday was the day Father left mother and I for his new family. I didn't necessarily blame him. Mother had become so unbearable that some days I locked myself into my room and refused to come out.

When I walked out of my cream colored bedroom door that morning I was met with a slap. That day was marked as the first time mother hit me, and also the day I came to the realization that being invisible wasn't so bad. In fact, instead of longing for attention of mother, I hoped and prayed she would forget about me. I was never that lucky.

It was a slow process when mother started hitting and hurting me more, it wasn't  all at once. She started off verbally abusing me more than anything. She said I was the one who pushed father away. It basically became her daily mantra to tell me:
1.) How much of a mistake I was
2.) I was the one who pushed father away
3.)That I am the complete and whole reason father wanted a new family
4.) I will never amount to anything in life

As an 8 year old hearing my own mother say that pretty much crushed my hopes and dreams. I mean if she didn't believe in me then why should I? I always believed what she said and thought that I wasn't good enough because when I went to school all the girls talked about what they did with their mothers the night before; getting their hair and nails done, gossiping, watching movies together, and cooking in the kitchen together. That was a dream for me, but I knew that dream would never come true. Mother simply was not like that.

Around the time I turned 9 (which my birthday  went unnoticed like the year before, and would continue to go unnoticed for many years to come.) mother had gotten put on a heavier medication. It made everything so much worse. I didn't think that could happen, I was proved wrong once again.

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