We were walking by, my mum and I, and he approached us with a violent attitude. What he didn’t learn in our eight years together is that when I have my period, I’m the worst in every way. And that day I had my period. It took me exactly five seconds to throw him on the floor.
Fight back, girls. Most of them are chickens. With all due respect to chickens.
Anyway, now it was me and my mother only. Again, what could have been the beginning of a new life was one of another nightmare. My mom searched for a new boyfriend. She’d put ads, went dancing, joined clubs. I couldn’t believe it.
By that time, I worked at an advertising agency that had an office in Tuscany. My boss asked me if I could work part-time in the Tuscan office. They had a house from ‘500, which they had recently renovated, with a separate apartment that I could have used. The house was next to a pond, and woods. Immerse in the Tuscan hills. I couldn’t say no! And so I went. It was dreamy. I lived in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by nature. It was peaceful. Heavenly. And with a 20 minutes’ ride, I was in town.
I guess my time there was what reignited my childhood idea of living on a farm. During all the previous years, I had totally forgotten about my dream. I was too busy, too sad. Cat Cottage was still far away, but after years of living as they had sedated me, I felt like a minor part of me was reawakening.
Unfortunately, all have an end. I began fighting with my boss and I left. After a year and a half of breathing country life, even if just for a few days a week, living full-time in Milan was hard. I was claustrophobic. In the meantime, my mother had a new boyfriend which you don’t want to know about. Leave it, believe me. The only good thing about him was that he wasn’t from Milan but from a small place 40km away, and he convinced my mother to move out to the country. Yay!
We moved into an apartment in a small town. It was nothing like Tuscany, but there was a lot of greenery and woods, too. It wasn’t exactly how I wanted to live, but I felt I was getting closer. All around me was hell, though.
While my ex-stepfather had never stopped stalking us via phone (too chicken shit to face me in person, I guess), my father had reappeared, too. And guess what? His favorite hobby was stalking us, as well. Not only! My mother’s new boyfriend had girlfriends other than my mother. Yes. My mum knew and accepted it. One girlfriend wasn’t of the same opinion as my mum though and stalked us, too. It was like living in an evil circus. Again, thank heaven for a public library nearby, and for a good job that could make me buy tons of books. And for my fighter attitude.
During all the years before, my mother had never been fully on my side. My capacity and will to react disturbed her. My emotional independence was something she wasn’t willing to sympathize with. I had been working to re-construct my sense of self-worth all my life, and she couldn’t stand it. But my sense of self-worth was growing stronger, even if she did everything in her power to avoid it. The more time went by, the more she behaved as my father did, minus physical violence.
I knew she would not change, if not for the worst.
The only way out for me was to move far away and break this vicious game. But I didn’t know how to.
One day my mother told me her boyfriend needed to stay with us for a week, while they renovated his house. Knowing that saying no was useless, I said yes. To cut the story short, he ended up living with us for eight months, making up excuses every time. He didn’t have a proper job, so he wasn’t paying for anything. I worked to pay the rent and provide for everything else. During the weekend, he went to be with his other girlfriend. My mom was fine with all of it. I wasn’t. But I did not know how to get myself out of this situation. Until I found out the truth, which I had suspected from the first day, being the guy of an absolute slob and my mum in complete psychological slavery. They had kicked him out of the apartment where he lived and had no other place to go. My mother knew it from the beginning. Telling me a lie was her idea.