Originally posted on Healing Beyond Survival:
After years of staying away, I was summoned to my parents’ home. My first evening there, my stepfather alarmed me by pulling me into his arms—this, while my mother lay dying of cancer just yards away. The familiar smell of alcohol, the feel of his hot breath, triggered memories from the past as he moved to bury his face in my neck. “You know how much Daddy loves you—” I jerked away from him. “Stop it!” Suddenly pale, he grabbed his pack of cigarettes and spat at me, “Get to bed!” as though I was five instead of thirty-five. I did as he commanded and climbed the stairs to the spare bedroom, seething with hatred for my childhood abuser.
A number of years later, when I got an email from a relative telling me my stepfather was dead, something happened that I couldn’t understand: I couldn’t stop crying. And it…
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