Sunday, June 3, 2007

Biography---Part 1

The purpose of writing this blog is to share my spiritual journey to wholeness. Unless I write about my childhood, nobody will know how far I have come to get where I am today. Even as a young child, I knew that something good had to come out of the pain that I was suffering.

I write to help myself and to help others. I am not alone and neither are you. I will no longer suffer in the quiet of my mind. I speak out to help others.

I was born on December 11, 1951. My parents named me Patricia. Until recently, my friends all called me Pat. It has only been in the past 3 years that I have started answering to and using the name Patricia again. Later on, in Part 2 of my biography, I will explain why I refused to answer to the name Patricia except with family members who have always called me Patricia.

I was the oldest of 3 children. At an early age, I was given the role of family hero. I always made good grades, was always polite, rarely got into trouble. You could call me a "goody two shoes". I was always the teacher's pet. School was the only place that I felt safe.

At the age of 3, 2 important events happened. The first event that I remember was when I made the decision to become my mother's protector. I have a vivid memory of someone in my dad's family dying. Everyone was crying and upset except my mother. I remember looking up at her and thinking, "She feels nothing." It became my job to protect her so she wouldn't have to feel.

The second event happened at my maternal grandmother's church. I remember the preacher talking about the sin of adultry and in my child's mind, I labeled myself as an adultress. I forgot about this event until about 10 years ago when I was sharing my story for the first time in front of a crowd of people at an open AA meeting. I was their guest speaker that day and I recorded my talk. I knew I would be too nervous to remember what I had said. I listened to the tape twice before I heard what I said about labeling myself an adultress. I have no memories to support calling myself by this label.

My memories of abuse started when I was 11 years old. An uncle asked my parents if I could go on a fishing trip with him for the day. I wasn't sure that I wanted to go but went since my parents oked the trip. I was raped several times during the day. It happened several times more over the weekend. I can't tell you all of the reasons for my silence.

A few months later, my dad started to sexually abuse me. This continued for 6 years. When I was 17, I was strong enough to say no. I knew that I was emotional stronger than my dad. Some people have asked me why my mother didn't do anything to stop it. After I had been though several years of counseling, I told my mom. I asked her if she knew. She said no. My belief was that since she was so shut down to her own emotional pain, she couldn't see what was happening to me. If she had, she would have been forced to deal with her own pain.

I have forgiven all of my abusers and myself for the parts that we played in this drama. Both of my parents have been my greatest teachers in this lifetime. I would not change any of it. It has made me into the caring, compassionate, strong woman that I am today.

I lived in 2 worlds as a child. This is how I survived. I had the abuse at home and I had the world of books at school. I hated summers when I was home every day. I loved school. My other escape was TV. I know that a lot of people think that TV is bad for our children and I agree that the commercials and violence are bad. Books and TV were how I escaped the world of abuse and rage that my dad created in our house. Books and movies took me places I would never have been able to go otherwise. I could visit China, Australia or the moon and outer space through reading and movies. I am still an avid reader today except that today I read mostly non-fiction. As a child and young adult, I read for pure escapism. I was a "Trekkie" before there was a label for it.

As a teenager, I was extremely shy. Most of my classmates probably don't remember much about me. I was quiet and tried to blend in or disappear. I craved attention and was terrified of it. At home, I cleaned house and cooked and tried to keep out of trouble. At school, I spent most of my time in class or the library reading.

When I was a senior, one day I decided to wear makeup to school. I think I may have put it on in the school bathroom so my dad wouldn't see. I had saved my lunch money for a month to buy it. No one said anything about me looking different until English class. My teacher told me that I looked nice and my eyes were pretty. I went home and washed the makeup off my face and didn't wear any again until after I was in college and away from home. I was thrilled that she noticed and terrified of the attention that it might draw my way.

I know that this may be difficult for some to read. It was difficult for me to write.

I still have a fear of revealing too much. My object in writing this is to show you the beginnings of my spiritual journey. Without this, I would be a blank slate. All of these experiences have welded me into the individual that I am today. I have gone though the fires of adversity and come out the other side of it a better person.

I decided to write this because of a recent article that I read by a friend of mine. I hope you will check out this article. It is called "Stories That No Longer Serve You" written by Slade Roberson. Below is the link that will take you to his website. The article is well worth reading.

Slade has been my inspiration and teacher for how to set up my own blog. He actually thinks I am a good writer. He keeps encouraging me to write and share it with others, so here it is. Right now my site is a work in progress, so please be patient. Things are changing every day.

Love you all,
Patricia Singleton


Slade said...

Congratulations on the blog, Patricia, I'm so proud of you!

Patricia Singleton said...

Slade, thanks, it is all your fault. Ain't life GRAND!!!!

klm said...

Congratulations Patricia and WELCOME!!!

You are a wonderful writer, lyrical and direct all rolled into one.

Remember, you already ARE healed.

Thank you for sharing you... for sharing the story that does no longer serve you, yet brought you here.

Many blessings,

Patricia Singleton said...

klm, Thanks for the encouragement. This is a really big step for me. Lots of fear to overcome. Your words have me smiling. It feels really good to have someone else think your writing is worth sharing.

Anonymous said...

Hi Patricia

Thanks for sharing, you are very brave. I suffered incest when I was younger too and have buried it, I know one day I will have to deal with it but am waiting for the time. It's on it's way so please take solace from the fact you are helping people like me who are still keeping the secret.

Lots of love x

Patricia Singleton said...

Anonymous, you have my love and compassion for where ever you are in your journey. I just started last week a series of articles that I will be doing on incest and my recovery.