To relive my past in my mind can sometimes be hard to me, but I look at what I've accomplished since then, and I can be proud that I have not recycled the behavior that those women showed me. I don't treat my children the way they treated us. That's a big triumph. So many times I hear of parents that beat their kids using the excuse that they were disciplined in the way when they were growing. There was ONE plus side to being held captive, so-to-speak, by these women. I found a way to channel my pain, to divert my anger and helplessness through art. If that's not a positive from a negative, then I don't know what is.
I was threatened on a daily basis if I told anyone what they did to my sister and I. What did they do? Aside from beating us with any object they found, they would throw buckets of hot water on us. One bucket contained boiling water, and I still have the burn marks on my right arm to remember it by. They cower in fear when they did something like that thinking it would show and when my mom's family visited us, they would have to explain themselves. Sneaky ladies, they would do everything possible to cover it up, including threatening me to not talk or they would hurt my sister. My family never found out. Not until I was reunited with them, later on. Still, I learned to channel everything into my art. I communicated through my drawings. I learned to see the funny things, the lighthearted things in everything I look at. I began to dream.
To this day, I still do it. I want to share my art, my stories, my ideas with the world in the form of cartoons. Maybe everyone can laugh along side me, with me or at me; it doesn't matter, as long as they laugh.