I've wanted to tell my story for a long time. I've even started it a few times...and then just stopped. There was a time when I wanted to be an author, but that too faded. So I found myself asking, why not? Well, as far as the life story goes- I guess I just assumed that no one would care to read it. After all, my life is certainly not something that fairy tales are made of. But then I realized that the real reason I want to tell my story is so that it has been told. I don't care if I touch people with my writing or make money from it, or even if it is good. All that matters to me, I've realized, is that I don't leave this world without having left something behind. I have children, who of course will be my legacy, but my children will not fully reflect who I am, who I was, or who I want to be. In fact, in the grand scheme of things, I was an entirely different person before I had children. So I have decided to leave my mark.

So who am I? Well I used to be a naive child. Ignorant really, but ignorance is bliss. For a long time I didn't even realize that my life, my family, was something straight from a lifetime movie. I actually felt normalcy in the parties and the fighting. I knew that I didn't have everything I wanted, but I didn't think we were poor; excuse me "poverty stricken". Don't get me wrong, I am well aware that no one has a normal family, I also realize that there are many people in the world that were way worse off when things were bad for me. But this is not about those people, this story is mine.

My first memory as a child is my father moving out. I was two. I'm not even sure how I can remember that being as young as I was, but I do. For a long time I wasn't even sure what the memory was when it would play like a movie in my mind. It wasn't until I described it to my Mom that I discovered I was seeing the day that he left. I was seeing him packing to leave, that's why Mom was crying. Anyway, eventually my Mom remarried, as did my Dad. Lucky me, more crazy people!

My new step dad came equipped with two boys of his own. Almost like the Brady Bunch, but minus one boy, one girl, and the happiness. I remember my mom and him fighting a lot, sometimes physically. But what I really remember is the parties. A lot of times my mom’s friends would bring their kids, and I would make up dance routines and plays for us to put on for our parents. These were the better times, the fun times. Then there were the times when I was trying to sleep. "Be Quiet! I have to go to school in the morning!" I would plead. I was about 7 or 8 at the time. But they would just keep drinking and partying. This was about the time in my life when reality started to sink in. I would go over to friend’s houses and see how different their parents were, how different their lives were. I spent a lot of time with my friends, and their families...