Friday, October 3, 2014. No matter what the outcome I would say that today is a landmark day. First of all, it marks the 45th year anniversary of my escape from my insanely abusive childhood. I had just turned 18. My parents “put” me into the Navy. I certainly had no choice. I had never had a choice. So off I flew October 3, 1969 leaving my beloved Alaska behind. Off I went to land in Baltimore, Maryland to enter boot-camp which was – very literally – the best time of my life thus far. I thought I was in heaven!
But there’s more.
There’s a great brochure picture — CLICK HERE — about the 2-day conference Dr. Bruce Perry is the main speaker for tomorrow here in Fargo, ND that my daughter is attending. We are hoping he will be on-site today, but if not then tomorrow will be our significant day! (It turns out the online brochure, strangely enough, is wrong. Perry is speaking all day today in Fargo.)
This is the letter coauthor Ramona will hand-deliver to Dr. Perry’s at some point during this conference, along with a printed/bound copy of a manuscript for our book:
Dear Dr. Perry,
I would like to take the opportunity of your speaking at this conference in Fargo that my daughter Ramona is attending to have her give you this letter in person about our book,Story Without Words: How Did Child Abuse Break My Mother? which we have epublished on Amazon.com in Kindle format.
When I read your descriptions in The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog: And Other Stories from a Child Psychiatrist’s Notebook about how early traumatic stress can alter physiological development it helped me further decipher both what I know of my own process of surviving the horrendous abuse I suffered from my mother as well as the probable effects of the early abuse and neglect done to her.
Mother suffered a psychotic break during her difficult 24-hour labor with breech-me (in 1951) that left her forever believing I was sent by the devil to kill her while I was being born and that I was not human. Because we both survived my birth she believed I was the devil’s “curse upon” her life. To her I was the devil’s child.
Although I endured the trauma of her horrific abuse from the moment I was born and for the next 18 years with no adult to help me, this book is not directly my story. Rather it is my effort to combine everything I know and suspect about Mother’s early life in an attempt to discover factors that may have contributed to her severe mental illness as it made her such a terrible monster toward me. By my most basic estimate she would have deserved a minimum jail sentence of 15,000 years for her crimes against me, yet it is what I call my “informed compassion” for Mother that I sought to strengthen within the pages of this book.
It would be an honor for me if you would consent to previewing a copy of our book and, if you like it, contribute a few short words that we could use on the cover of the book, and on a web site and other promotional venues marketing this sensitive, thought provoking work.
I can be contacted via email at _______. Thank you very much in advance for your kindness.
My choice for a subtitle is direct and blunt. It is also, from my point of view, exactly accurate for what I intend with this book. (All my words about the cover art for this book have been removed.)
Ramona feels I am selling myself short with my subtitle. Her suggestion: A Survivor’s Compassionate Inquiry Into What Broke Her Mother. What parts of “my story” that are in this book are not directly about me. Never would I have such stories to tell, never would I have lived through what I did, if my mother had not been the sick, sadistic monster that she was. My point in writing any part of “my story” was to amplify the seriousness of the suffering Mother’s illness was capable of causing her child — me.
I would far rather “undersell” this book than not. Readers of depth and breadth will be moved by the sincere complexity of this story far beyond what they could have imagined had they not discovered it by their own efforts. My thoughts are that anyone who knows a very troubled parent might be motivated to read this book once they find a point of resonance in the subtitle.
I just spoke with Ramona and the letter and manuscript have been delivered. She said Perry was most warmly receptive to her approaching him and expressed certain interest in the manuscript. He told her that he always values hearing from adult survivors such as I am and he assured her that I will be hearing from him.
It was an act of daring for Ramona to approach Perry on this mission and I thanked her with everything I am. Perry is THE ONE PERSON ON EARTH I want to read this book. He is the one person I am SURE will understand what I am saying. Considering that there are at present nine more manuscripts prepared for edit except for their photographs and at least four more to be written — and considering that my writing heart has been woefully absent this past year — I take the fact that this manuscript is now in the hands of the most competent child trauma expert on this planet as a direct gift from God. Thank you! And thank you Ramona for being the angel YOU are!
Here is our first book out in ebook format. Click here to view or purchase –
It lists for $2.99 and can be read by Amazon Prime customers without charge. Reviews for the book on the Amazon.com site are welcome.