4 In My Family

There’s 4 in my family
by Take Root Member Charlene

There’s 4 in my family after I was born
-1 messy divorce
+1 abducting parent
-1 custodial parent left behind
-1 brother left behind
=2 in the family “It’s just you and me kid, he said.”
+1 name change
-1 name change back
+10 years on the run
+6 different states that we lived in
+14 different schools
-10 years without Christmas or birthdays
-1 missed childhood
-1 attempted runaway
-2 jobs in high school
=18 the age I went looking for my left behind family
+1 chance to become a daughter again
+1 chance to become a sister again
+1 more year until I moved out
+2 more years until I could afford college
-2 times I sent my dad money
+1 love of my life
+1 year of therapy
+1 marriage
+1 set of in-laws
+3 years to adjust to new family traditions and holidays
-1 failed relationship with abducting parent
=27 the age when I last spoke with my father……

There’s 4 in my family now
+1 wife and mother
+1 doting husband
+2 growing kids
=4 new reasons to live, laugh, and love


Read Charlene’s abduction narrative

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