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Pain. Pain is something that lets you know you're alive. At least that's what I used to tell myself.
My story is long and painful. If anyone has even read the book The Child Called It, then you partially know my story.
But let me start at the beginning.
I was born on October 1st, 1998 in a barn in Mexico. I moved to the USA when I was two years old. The first few years of my life were great. It wasn't until I turned five years old that my life changed.
I can't remember when it all started, but when my dad and my mom got a job—my dad was a gardener and my mom was a baker—that's when it all started. My Abuelita (grandma) babysat me whenever she could. But whenever she couldn't, another babysitter took over and took care of me and my brother.
The other babysitter was a male, and I was terrified of him. He used to rape me and leave no trace of it. Whenever he came over, I made my brother go into another room even though he was older than me. He would take me into my bedroom and rape me every time he was over. After that, he would make me take a bath with a soap that I still can't stand to use 'till this day.
My dad found out about it two years later and one day he went to the authorities about it and no one believed me. But they did do something. They found out about my dad and sent him back to Mexico, and I still haven't seen him 'till this day.
I miss my father every day. It was brave what he did and I still love him. After my father was sent back, my mother went into a deep depression. She stopped working, started abusing us, and became a drunk. She never used any drugs and I thank God for that. My Nana was also very abusive. Both of them were so abusive that we ended up on child protective services' radar.
It freaked my mother out so much that we moved out to South Dakota when I was almost eight years old. But we still ended up in the foster system. Since my brother was special needs, he went to a different home than I did.
I stayed in the foster system until I was 14 years old. I lived with my grandmother for nine months until I was adopted by her and I hated it. Every passing day I had to find new ways just to stay out of her way and not get hurt.
I got kicked out of her house just months before I graduated high school. I was taken in by one of my best friends' family, whom I still live with this day.
One thing, though, that I've tried to let go of, was the fact that they haven't found my rapist. I just want to say one thing to my rapist though:
I forgive you. I forgive you for all the pain you put me through. I want to thank you for the lessons that you have taught me. I hope you know that what you did was wrong and that you won't do it again. I hope that one day you will be able to forgive yourself just as I have forgiven you.