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Life Ain't No Crystal Stair
The following story was submitted anonymously on Oct. 16, 2014.
The names have been changed to protect the author's privacy.

There was a poem I knew which went at one point: Life for me ain't been no crystal stair, it's had tacks in, and splinter torn up, and places with no carpet on the floor - bare. But all the time I've been a ' climbing on.
That just about describes my life. I was born in a shelter for abused women, where my mam ran when Dad threatened to kill the baby
First child. The shelter people taught Mam how to look after me.
Moved out pretty soon after, to a little flat paid for by charity. I lived pretty happily until I was six. I came home from my third day at school to find Dad there. And Mam packing her suitcase. She was going back to him.
Dad didn't want me though, so I went to a foster family. It was awesome. I loved it there. I rode horses, took up gymnastics (which I still do) and self defense classes- and best of all, I was loved. It couldn't last of course.
I was twelve when it happened. I don't want to go into too many details, but I was raped. I was part of a major court case, and my picture was in he tabloids. I was the only one of his victims alive. Then Mam called me up and said she'd left Dad again after he hit her so hard she needed to go to the ER, and she wanted me to come back and live with her. I refused outright, which meant she hasn't spoken to me since.
More has happened since, but it really isn't relevant.
My point is, you would look at me and see see a cheerful, bubbly, girl, and think I have no problems. But it's not about being trouble - free. It's about rising above your challenges- and when you let go, learning to catch.

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