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Jul 2012
I was six years old
I got a stuffed piglet
From you
For my birthday.
I remember the picture you took.
Laying on the white couch
In my purple shirt
Hugging that tiny piglet
Tears in my eyes.
Tears of excitement maybe
Or maybe sadness because I knew I couldn't stay forever.
Stay in your house
Were I felt safe
Loved
Wanted.
I was eight years old.
We found out we could stay
Or so we thought.
You told us we wouldn't have to live with her anymore
We celebrated.
I was so very excited to be safe
Loved
Wanted.
I was nine years old.
We went to Washington to go to the water park
For my birthday.
You bought me a purple teddy bear.
I named him President Theodore Roosevelt.
I thought I was clever.
Karla sent Kate and I to bed so the adults could hang out
I cried.
I didn't get to say goodnight to my Daddy on my birthday.
I wanted one more hug
Before my dreams too me to a place
Where I could be forever safe
Loved
Wanted.
I was eleven.
We didn't go to the Enchanted Forest for the first year
For my birthday.
You bought me a giant stuffed dog
You somehow squeezed him in a rather small box
So I couldn't guess what it was
Because I was always able to.
I named him Beethoven
To be Mozart's new friend.
Wrapped up in his soft, tan body
I felt ever so safe.
Loved.
Wanted.
I was thirteen
My first birthday actually living in Oregon.
You made a huge chocolate-chocolate cake
The one with chocolate chunks sticking out of the frosting.
I blew out the candlesΒ not having a wish
The wish I made for the past twelve years finally came true:
I was living with you.
I was only allowed one piece of that amazing cake
For I had a swim meet in two days.
We celebrated as a family.
There was this picture taken of Karla and I.
Both smiling.
This may be the last one taken of us happy.
At the time I felt so safe.
Loved.
Wanted.
I was sixteen.
Most girls got to go get their license on their sixteenth birthday.
I spent my day in bed
Crying.
I asked for the day off from work.
You even made me call to ask if I could work
When you found out and yelled.
You screamed and yelled how I was always disobeying you
How once again I ruined your plans.
You made me stay in my room all day
My phone was taken away
I don't think I even ate that day or the next
You brought me a piece of cake before you threw out the rest
I simply stared at the chocolate-chocolate cake through tears
Hating myself for ruining my birthday.
Hating you for allowing me to hate myself
For not letting me feel safe.
Loved.
Wanted.
I was eighteen
I woke up to chocolate-chocolate cake
Tina made for me;
She didn't even know it was a tradition.
I was surrounded by friends all day.
But you never even called.
You didn't send a text,
Write a note on Facebook, or even a message.
My daddy didn't even wish me a happy eighteen birthday.
Instead I got to go swimming,
Eat veggie kabobs Sam made,
Surround myself with people who make me feel safe.
Loved.
Wanted.
Tomorrow I turn nineteen.
I am ignoring my birthday.
I will say thank you to those who write on my Facebook wall
But with no phone I will only call my mom.
We may go to dinner, my wonderful boyfriend and I.
But I refuse to celebrate.
That would in turn be thanking the man who created me
Who will not call
Will not write
That one that doesn't even give a **** if I am even still alive.
Who doesn't know where I am.
The one who kicked me out before I even turned eighteen.
That man who I am supposed to call my father.
My daddy who used to hug me
Hold me when I was scared
Made me feel safe
Loved
Wanted.
That same man who now makes me feel unworthy
Lost, confused, sad, angry beyond belief,
Because he won't even call me on my birthday.
So happy birthday to me!
I will not celebrate knowing the man who gave me life
The man who nineteen years ago held his baby girl
Not knowing he would one day ruin her
Make her feel so vulnerable
Unloved
Unwanted
On her birthday.
Jill Anderson
Written by
Jill Anderson
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