Updated: Dec 30, 2019
I never knew I would go through everything I did and end up where I am now. Who does anyway?
My name is Daisy Pillarda. I was born in Sacramento, CA, but didn't spend much of my life there. I moved a lot as a kid and couldn't even list all the places if I wanted to. I just know that growing up, things were hard. My mom was married to a leach and worked hard day and night to keep food on the table on her own. Sometimes I think I blocked a lot of my childhood out because I didn't have a lot of consistency and true happiness. Being the youngest of three was hard, especially since they were both boys and wanted nothing to do with their little sister as they grew older. (totally normal) Soon enough, the leach left my mom, wiped her accounts and that's when I felt like my life was flipped upside down.
At this time, I lived in Lakeview, Oregon. I actually loved it there and didn't understand how much until much later in life. I just didn't like the circumstances. Since my mom was abandoned by her husband, I could see how broken she really was even though I was so young. I think I was only in the second or third grade, but I remember being so shocked at the news that my step-dad wouldn't return. I didn't know if I was happy because he was truly evil and hurt us kids frequently, or if I was so mortified at the damage it had done to my mom. It was a very confusing time for me. My mom's drinking became more consistent and yes, she was an alcoholic, but at that time in my life, I didn't understand that either. To me, her drinking was normal, but I didn't know who my mom was without alcohol at this time. Looking back, I don't blame her for her flaws. Life was hard-unreasonably hard- for her. She didn't have anyone on her side and no one believed in her and I know in my heart of hearts, I don't think I would've been able to manage as she did.
Some time passed and my mom met my current step-dad on the internet. Seeing my mom light up again was a breath of fresh air. I remember she used to steal my nail polish and get nervous before doing video chats with him. It was the luck of the draw, as they are still married to this day. He is from Island, and it was just interesting to see everything unfold. Soon enough, he flew to the States to be with my mom. He came into my life when us kids were damaged. I remember acting out on purpose in attempts to convince my mom not to be with him, but I think that's because I was so afraid that he would be like my last step-dad. I think acting out like that was a way of trying to protect myself, but little did I know he would soon become just my Dad, not just a Step-Dad.
Maybe a year or two later, we moved to Madeline, CA. It's such a small town, it's barely on the Map. My Dad began working on a ranch and I had some of the best times there. I remember playing in the snow, building forts and doing things that kids just do! I hated how much my parents worked, and I loved the days I got to go with my dad and help him and I still hold those memories very dear. That place was my little kingdom. I climbed on top of the haystacks and staked my claim in my own creative world. I miss the innocence I felt in those days, but dark times always come, and they always seem to take away every beacon of light you feel like you have.
I was sexually assaulted. But I survived. (I didn't understand the gravity of this statement until just a couple years ago.) Being sexually assaulted by someone so close to me was one of the most confusing experiences that anyone in my family could have had. This wasn't someone we all could just walk away from because he was family. If a stranger did it, things would have been simple; leave, disappear, sue, punish, whatever you want. But when it's someone so impossibly close to you, things get hard. But he was a kid. He was no where near being an adult and he got ahold of alcohol and probably doesn't even remember any of it. That doesn't justify it and it doesn't make it better for me. While I wanted to hate him, everyone was supporting him so he could heal. I felt obligated to cheer him on and encourage him to be better. I felt like I was supposed to miss him when he was gone, I thought I was supposed to still talk to him. I felt like this because my family did and family shouldn't leave you when you make a mistake (and that's what it was), but I was still a victim. I felt like people forgot that I was a victim amongst helping him.
Do I get mad at my family for staying with us through thick and thin? Or do I get mad only because they forgot about me? Because asking them to walk away from someone they love and care about doesn't feel right, but being off to heal myself as a child felt wrong too.
For years, it went on this way and I maintained a relationship with the person who assaulted me. I did feel awful how negatively it affected his life. I really did find forgiveness in my heart and wished him to be better. All I wanted was for him to heal and I know I never translated that correctly. I was so confused that people forgot that I was a victim that I almost forgot too, but the reminders came in waves and those waves created extreme emotions that I inflicted on his an I's relationship.
Moving forward was hard. We ended up moving again, this time to Winnemucca, NV. I don't understand why, but I've also never asked my mom. But I don't blame her for wanting to change her surroundings and keep moving through life. Things had increasingly became harder because of the assault and as confused as I was, I can only imagine how she felt. I remember my parents getting in fights about her drinking sometimes, but nothing too extreme. But as I was growing up and going through my teenage years, I couldn't get a grasp on who I was. How can you when you don't even understand the things that have happened to you? I fought my parents constantly around this age. I always felt like the answer was, "you're just a kid, so be quiet." But I couldn't. I had too much to say. I was feeling too much. A good friend of mine at the time had caught me cutting myself and swore me to quit, and I did thankfully. But nothing ended there. I lacked self respect. I got straight A's and partied way too much. I got into things no child should. I felt like my parents gave up on me. I felt responsible for every one of their arguments. But looking back, I wasn't an easy child. I had such destructive behavior at the time and left far before I was 18. I figured my parents were better off without me and I knew I'd never figure myself out if I didn't remove everybody and everything that was confusing.
Once I started life on my own, I began a journey of self-discovering and learning. It took me many years to figure out who I was at the time, who I wanted to be, and what I needed to do to heal. I'm lucky to have a beautiful relationship with my parents again and live a life of forgiveness and have a good mental well-being. Stay tuned to learn what crazy turns my choices bring to my life! The story is no where near over! Just remember as you read, be open-minded, find forgiveness in your heart, and be positive. Each person in my life, good and bad, built me up to be an amazing mom, friend, wife, etc. And I wouldn't be who I am now without any of it. I can't wait to share more with you!