I have been “writing” ever since I was a child, but I never thought of myself as a writer. It is just a way of expressing myself in words. However, I’ve been told that I am a storyteller and I have plenty of stories to tell, as do we all.
For instance, my father, who served during World War II, was a brilliant engineer and considered a genius. However, within the walls of my childhood home, “Daddy”, was a negligent abusive mean drunk who swigged cognac like an elephant guzzling water.
Daddy, a musical genius at the age of fifteen
My dear mother, orphaned at the age of four, had no frame of reference for nurturing. She lived in an overcrowded orphanage in Brooklyn New York run by overly strict nuns during her youth, then bounced around one uncaring foster home to another. At the age of eighteen, she ran off with a man to Manhattan to pursue a singing career. He left her on her own.
Good or bad, she did whatever she had to. I sometimes wondered why my thirty-one-year-old father handpicked this vulnerable eighteen-year-old-orphan to marry. Perhaps it was easy to control the pretty teenager nobody wanted. He pursued her relentlessly, setting her up with auditions and showering her with gifts and adulation. But she never made it in show business. Daddy’s financial stability provided Mom the sense of security she craved, and she grew into a statuesque raven-haired beauty who stayed at home. Their age difference seemed to quench her desire for a father figure as well.
My mother named me after a song, “Nancy with the Laughing Face.” When I was two, I wandered from my mother in a department store and stumbled into a kind elderly man. He led me back to her and bought me a fluffy stuffed kitten that I treasured for years. I started out so innocent, so friendly.
Not so my parents, whose upbringing strangely portended my future.
Their neglect of me and of what the secrets caused gave an open invitation to rapists, starting with junior high boys. Like a long, winding row of falling dominoes, that path brutalized me on to graduation into New York City sex trafficking.
Hence, here I am, confined to bed because of a virus I contracted during those three horrendous years that sex traffickers held me captive.
Now writing, blogging, and hosting human trafficking awareness websites have become my life’s blood. It keeps me breathing, gives me purpose, and staves suicidal thoughts. I had attempted suicide unsuccessfully nine times. Thankfully.
I am an open book sharing myself transparently to benefit others, and frankly, to empty my soul of the good, bad, and ugly of my life. Encouraging just one person or sparing another from plights like mine makes all the suffering worth it.
At the age of sixty-four, and on my way out of this world, my determination to do all I can to help others increases. However, I experience some of my greatest joy in gleaning from people. I’m intrigued by their viewpoints, as none of us know everything, but I believe each person has something to offer me. And I need this. You open my mind, pumping blood into the vessels of my brain, keeping it sharp. I gain unique perspectives, new knowledge, and hopefully, wisdom.
I hope my musings touch your heart. Thank you for following me and taking an interest in the life of a woman hidden away from the world. And thank you for allowing me to travel with you on your journey. We sing through our poetry, prose, photography, pain, et cetera, and music soothes the soul. Never stop singing. Your voices are beautiful.