from the editor

I think that this is going to be my last post for a while.

Not forever but for a while.

In September of 2014 I opened the mail or the door, I can’t recall now. There was a notice from the Department of Human Services a child welfare worker was trying to answer an anonymous complaint.

On October 31, 2014 my son was placed into the custody of DHS.

On November 1, 2014 I broke a promise to my mother I’d made first to myself decades ago but then to her when I’d finally gotten that vampire Valerie out of our lives. I walked her to a van and that was the day she began to live in a nursing home.

On November 2, 2014 I woke up in the Belmont Psychiatric hospital on suicide and harm watch.

Today is January 24, 2018.

While I have continued to write here in the past 3 years I have never told the whole story. I never shared things because I thought that things would be different within my life by now and I was terrified of losing progress.

I no longer have that specific fear.

The initial complaint that started this whole ordeal was reported by an ex lover. Her name is Andrea Smith. She called in retaliation of our break up. She wanted to hurt me. She did. She reported that I was involved with a group of adults who fantasizes about having sex with underage girls. That was a lie, always was and always will be a lie.

A lot of things were happening in that old house on Limekiln Pike then.

While it all started with a lie, it was a series of events which contributed to the success of the lie in ripping my life apart.

In a conversation with a friend recently I explained that I do not know who I am. That remains, still.

I no longer remember the girl who existed before Kahlil Grant walked into my life.

I no longer remember the woman who gave birth to Kahlil Burton.

I look like her, but I do not know who she is.

3 years ago, I was lost and could not find a reason to live.

For seven years I cared for who you all have come to know as my Bonnie and my Clyde. I’ve called them my sanity and my reason.

Clyde took up residence in my uterus when I was trying to die in my 20s. I wasn’t brave enough to just swallow a bullet. Instead I drank and drugged and whored hoping that that fast life would erase the pain of losing a man I loved.

Love is such a mediocre word to describe how I’ve felt about Grant over the decades, but it is the only 1 I can use at the moment to foster understanding.

When my Kahlil was born my life had a purpose at least. I was responsible for someone other than myself so I would have to delay my death for 18 or so years.

The story of us, Grant and I would take many forms after I gave birth. At one point it involved a plan to relocate to the state of Nevada. The plan was to live 29 miles away from the California border. The California town name no longer matters, as much of things no longer do,

The planned departure was August 2007. My Esther, my mother or Bonnie as you’ve come to know her constant reader suffered a massive stroke in June of that year. I gave up my dream of a life with Grant to care for her. Knowing what I know now, it’s not the end of the world. Grant would go on to break my heart two more times before we get to today, so that one moment where I chose Bonnie & Clyde is not the end of the story.

I was given a reason for existing through their care. I found my true north through their care. I am meant to care for other people. Shit at times when I am healthy I do a decent job of it all. I am meant to pour all of my essence into others, it’s the only way I know how to live. Knew. Know. Knew.

I ended up walking away from the house I grew up in, with 4 bins of clothing and my stuffed animal Cola and my real life pet Onyx.

40 plus years of life reduced to 4 bins of clothes half of which I didn’t even like.

Initially my fight was to reunite my family.

I gave up that fight.

My Bonnie is still in her nursing home. I have not visited her in 2 years.

I could go on for paragraphs about the why, but the point is, I have not seen her in 2 years. The trauma of that is not something I am going to share here now, or perhaps ever. As open as I have been over the years you can’t have that constant reader. You just can’t.

My focus shifted instead on brining my son ‘home’.

The things I endured and the fights over time to get to that point is also trauma I will keep in part to myself. Where caring for my people once kept my upright it is now pain which stiffens my back.

Less than 1 year ago, I got the keys to the apartment I am typing this blog from. It was supposed to be the beginning of the end.

It is – in a sense.

This little 2 bedroom was supposed to be the place where Clyde came home and things returned to as normal as they were gonna get.

Every morning I pass through and look into his room and a part of my humanity dies because he does not sleep in the bed bought for him.

He is currently living in a residential facility for people on the Autism Spectrum. A place I thought he might eventually live when he was 25 or so, after he’d had years of love to mold him. I was only part way right.

His Autism is such that he will never ever live independently. He was going to have to go to a residential facility at some point because I am many things, yet somehow still not immortal.

On a personal level I’ve done things these past 3 years I didn’t think I could. I also at the same time understand that there are many who could not sit here and type after all of this, and after last Thursday.

Shit happens, and an obscene amount of it has happened to me over the years. Some of it is by my own hand, others like the lie, at the hand of others.

This is not a pity party though, this is just a message.

At some point I will point to my part in all of this and deal with it.  I am gonna have to because my life doesn’t look like it did 3 years ago.

I can look to a dozen things I may have done differently but the point remains, that absent a miracle in the amount of $1,300 in 24 hours, things are gonna change once more.

I took a long shot today to try to alter that. I failed.

In the wake of that failure, I have to accept that this was my last fight. I am done.

I just can’t do this anymore.

This meaning try to put back together a life, I never chose for myself, to do things I never selected, for the purpose of living a life  I obviously do not know how to live.

If I knew how to do it, I would not be at this point. I have to accept that.

Acceptance means letting my people go.

People also means ‘me’.

I have to let go of my Bishop.  That’s been a long time coming but I will always look at him and be reminded he brought Andrea into my life.

I have to let go of my Bonnie. I have to trust that she is cared for and safe and understand that when I could do for her is over.

I have to let go of Grant. I mean, he’s got a whole fucking wife now and her name is not Nicole. Yes I know that this marriage is going to end like the first marriage. He knows that too though and he still chose it.  He did not choose me.

I have to let go of this fight and that also includes my baby boy.

He is not a baby.  He doesn’t look anything like that child they literally ripped from my arms 3 years ago. He is in the best possible place for his needs and he’s learned to live without me. The only thing that I could possibly do would be to bring him back into my home only to have to deal with the pain of sending him away again.

I’m not wrong to say I haven’t the strength for that. Not when I see how he’s adjusted. Not when I see the fuckery I find myself in once more.

In less than 2 weeks I will no longer be in this apartment. The month off work started a chain of events that I wasn’t able to dig myself out of, or I should say at this point can’t.

Last Thursday was an eviction hearing.

In theory I still have time to meet the judgment and remain here.

In practice after shooting my last shot, it is time to let go.

I woke today understanding that I still ‘want’ this. I will go to bed tonight, eventually knowing that this is over.

I’m going to spend my day off tomorrow packing 4 bins.

Maybe 3.

I’m going to find a couch to sleep on until I can find a suitable room share.

Then I am going to start something else.

I also have to let go of Aphrodite.

She is  the name Grant gave me, one of many. She is a reminder that I have no identity, that I am no one.

While I have no idea who I am, I also know who I can never be again.

I can never actively be his – Grant’s girl

I can never actively be Esther’s daughter.

I can never actively be Kahlil’s mother.

While in a sense I will always still be those people, active is not an option.

Not one I can live with.

Today I still want to live. Yes that can change at any second but right now I want to live.

I just don’t know what that looks like, and I am not sure I can take you for that particular ride. I don’t yet know where I am going.

I do know that I will be back. Eventually.

About Aphrodite Brown

Aphrodite Brown is the owner and creator of Vizionz from the Bottom. Vizionz is a life and culture blog covering all aspects of life from pop culture, to politics, to parenting, with an extra heavy dose of alternative lifestyle & sex positive living.
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