A Mother's Tears

A story about drugs, hate, control, and fear for a child

Pen name - Oldie Goldie

© Copyright 2014 by Oldie Goldie


Photo of a woman cowering before a man.

 The first time I actually let somebody come into my mother’s house after I got home from Washington, they were in complete shock. We had guns and baseball bats by every door (I also had a baseball bat in my car) and the house was always on lockdown. Our house is still like this, but not as bad. I still have flashbacks of being strangled, or of him throwing me over a couch. I still have terrible nightmares of being held against my will in Alaska, or being thrown on his bed so he can have his way with me. I don’t think these memories will ever go away, even though I wish I could completely forget them. My daughter is just starting to like people who wear baseball caps. Even though all this abuse only happened when she was a few months old, she is almost 3 now and she still remembers certain things. I don’t trust people other than my family, and I’m not sure if I will ever fully trust anybody again. 
Chapter One
Waking up dizzy, trying to figure out where in the hell I was, my head was pounding in my ears. Slowly opening my eyes, I realized I was on my cousin's bed, thinking “Where's Amber?”  I slowly got up and walked down the hall to find my cousin passed out on the couch with the dogs. As I turned around, I caught a glimpse of the garbage can full of beer bottles. Man -- what a rough night -- what did we do? Walking upstairs, our aunt had already turned on coffee for us. Tripping over a cat as I was walking up the stairs, I was sure Annette wanted to kill both of us at that point; she had to get up in a couple of hours and go to work, and Amber and I were up all night, drunk, annoying, and noisy...   

 Well, Amber still had not woken up, and my brain was about to explode. I guessed I would go home and get back in my own bed. Driving home, my phone started to ring.  It was Brad, of course, wondering when Amber and I were leaving for North Dakota. I had no idea -- it changed every single day. But I was ready to leave!  After being laid off two days, earlier, I had nothing left to do in my town. Nobody was hiring there, and I was sick of working for all the other stupid construction companies. Everybody was talking about this huge oil boom in North Dakota, and I was pretty sure I could make it up there. 
 Talking to Brad as I was walking up the stairs to my apartment, running as fast as I can so that I didn’t have to see the neighbors and because I didn’t want them to know that I was home, I ran into the apartment and locked the door as fast as I could.  I spun around to see Melissa sitting there looking at me, wondering what in the hell I was doing. I hung up the phone and looked at Melissa, saying, "I know, I know, I look awful." She responded, "Yeah, you do ---- you look like shit.  Where have you been?" I said, "What do you mean where have I been? I thought you were with us last night,” to which she replied, "Brett came and got me. I couldn't handle being there anymore."
I shut all the blinds and turned off the lights. I guessed we would start another movie marathon.  What would it be today -- Sex and the City or Trueblood? "I am so sick of being laid off!  We have nothing to do except drink all night and lie around and watch movies all day!" "We can go to the gym!" Melissa said, but I seriously felt like I had been beaten all night so I was just going to lie there on the couch all day. "If Amber is not ready to leave for North Dakota Friday, I'm going by myself!" Melissa just looked at me and shook her head, and said “okay” as she turned on Trueblood. 
A couple days later, the 4-Runner was packed and I was ready to go. I went up to my mom’s and said goodbye to her and my step-dad.  As I was about to leave, Toddy handed me $500 cash and said, "I hope you'll be okay when you get there!” I said, "I'll be just fine!  I will call you guys later -- love you." I was so dang excited to get out of this town and head for North Dakota where all the crazy work and money was.  

 I made it to Preston, Idaho, and stopped at the gas station to say goodbye to Brady's mom.  She told me to drive safely, and I bought a couple lottery tickets as well as a drink and off I went. Brady is still in jail up in Boise, Idaho, and l won't be seeing him for a while. Apparently, it is seriously frowned upon to have a bunch of weed in your house when the cops show up! 
 That had to be the longest drive I had ever done from Logan, Utah, all the way up to Williston, North Dakota. I had taken three wrong turns and I was about to fall asleep at that point, having left at 11 o'clock in the morning and rolled into Williston around 3 o'clock in the morning. I went to see my buddy, Matt, and then headed into town.  I parked in the Walmart parking lot, crawled into my backseat, and tried to go to sleep. 
 I got up around 7 o'clock in the morning and decided I had better go find something to eat, so I went to the nearest truck stop: what a freaking dive!  I started talking to a couple older men who were there having coffee, and I told them I had just gotten into town and was looking for a job. They told me that they heard Knife River was hiring and where I should go to find them. I found them and filled out an application, but it was the Friday before Labor Day and everybody was leaving town to head home for the holiday. I had just arrived into town and it was the weekend; I had nowhere to stay, I didn’t know anybody in town, so I pretty much sat there all weekend.
 My cousin, Amber, finally got up there, and I went  to hang out with her at her friend Sam's house. We pretty much partied all weekend and spent all our money that we didn’t have, but there were enough men in that town so that women didn't really have to spend a lot of money to get drunk.
That next week, I was called into Knife River for an interview. I was hung over and had three people interviewing me all at the same time; I didn't even dare take off my sunglasses during the whole interview! What a freaking hot mess disaster I was. I honestly cannot believe that they hired me in the state I was in! I started the next day in the shop as the parts delivery girl, and I was also running the loader for the asphalt plant. The three main people with whom I worked were Pete, Sue, and Buck. I love those guys! When you are all from out of town working together, you turn into one big family, and we sure were one big family.   

 We were getting almost 80 to 90 hours a week. The money was out of control and there was nothing to do in that town except for go to either the bar or the strip club. So guess where we were every weekend?! Sam let me rent a room in her house for a month and then I finally got to move into the man camp with Sue and we had our own trailer. After working there for about a month, I finally met the other loader operator. Honestly, I wasn't interested in him or anyone who worked with the concrete plant or that side of Knife River. I had been working with the asphalt crew and at the shop with the mechanics, and that is who I wanted to hang out with. However, one night I was hanging out with the girls, and Brandon came over.  I ended up going out with those guys and we went to the bar, and they left me there. I ended up finding Buck and he took me home that night. I was so mad that I had gone out with Brandon and the concrete crew and they had left me at the bar! I never wanted to talk to any of them again. Later that night, a drunk Brandon showed up at Buck's trailer demanding that he talk to me.  He wanted to know why I had left him, and that he would just do his own thing and that I shouldn't even talk to him anymore. It was complete crazy talk, and I didn't even know what he was honestly talking about as I didn't leave him!! They had left me at the strip club by myself. 

 The next morning, me and Buck were having breakfast with the strippers who came to hang out with us, and Brandon stumbled over trying to talk to me. Buck wouldn't let him in his trailer because of Brandon yelling at me the night before and waking up half of the man camp. I went out to talk to Brandon and asked him if he even remembered anything he had said to me the prior night, and he said, “No!” It was so weird -- I honestly don't even know what I was thinking by hanging out with him again. 
Chapter Two
During the next month or so, I got permission to go home for a week.  Brandon came with me. I introduced him to the entire family and all of my friends. He put on such a good show. He honestly acted like he cared. He was nice to my family and friends, but I did notice that he talked in his sleep every night and was extremely violent in his sleep, if he even slept at all, which he rarely did.  He drank nonstop -- he was constantly drinking. He honestly made me think that he loved me, that he cared about me, and that he would do anything for me. 
 We went back to North Dakota and continued to work and party.  At that point, he was sleeping over every single night. For Thanksgiving we drove to Minnesota and Wisconsin so that I could meet his family. That was an awful trip! I had cysts on my ovaries rupture and I was in a lot of pain. The mechanics had found me on the floor of the shop the day before we were supposed to leave for Minnesota. It was awful!  Audrey had to take me to the hospital. It wasn't until our way back from Minnesota and Wisconsin when I realized that all but two of my pain pills were gone. Why had Brandon taken all of my pain pills when he knew how much pain I was in? 
I was lying in the backseat of the truck dying of pain, and the only thing I wanted to do was reach up in the front seat and slap the shit out of him for taking all of my painkillers. 
At Christmastime, he took me to pick out a ring! I was so excited and couldn’t believe it. He gave me the ring Christmas morning, and I honestly thought it was a wedding ring. Well, it turned out that it was not, and he never was planning on asking me to marry him! It was pretty much the biggest letdown ever. 
Since we had gone to Minnesota and Wisconsin for Thanksgiving, he said we would stay in Utah for Christmas. It turned out that he wanted to go to Minnesota and Wisconsin, and he made me leave my family the day after Christmas.  I didn't even get to spend my birthday in early January with my family. So there we were, driving from Utah back to Wisconsin again. We went to Minnesota for New Year's, which started out as a fun day; we all started drinking bloody Marys in the morning and playing games with his dad and step-mom. That night, we went into the Twin Cities in Minneapolis and went to a couple different bars, then ended up at Buffalo Wild Wings. I had been searching for Brandon with his dad for over an hour. I finally found him on the dance floor with another chick grinding like crazy. The bouncers knew what was coming because they saw me looking for him. There were four of them following me, and I walked up to Brandon and punched him as hard as I could in the face.  From there, I was tackled and thrown outside, kicked out of that Buffalo Wild Wings forever. 
At that point, we went back to his step-mom’s. I cried all night.  Brandon left driving drunk and wrecked into a field, barely making it back to the house. 
We got to Wisconsin the next day, and the only thing he wanted to do was drink and party. We went to his cousin’s house and he was dead set on getting a bunch of cocaine and who knows what else on the night of my birthday. He proceeded to call me all sorts of names, telling me I was the biggest piece of shit and that he wanted nothing to do with me. This was all on my birthday, and he took my ring from me. Seriously -- what a freaking shit show!  Was I seriously that stupid? I put up with that kind of crap! What was I doing?
Chapter Three
 When we got back up to North Dakota, it was really weird after Christmas. Brandon never wanted to be with me, and he didn't care what I was doing. Oh wait -- he did care if I talked to people, or if I didn't answer my phone, or if I didn't go buy him lunch or cigarettes and drinks all day. I finally told him I was done spending my own money on cigarettes and food for him every day. I couldn’t save up any money because he always made me buy everything, and he wouldn’t spend anything on food or house stuff. He had almost $50,000 saved up, and he wouldn’t even buy his own cigarettes. My whole point of going to North Dakota was to be able to save money, not spend it on some loser guy. Instead of him saying, “Thanks, honey, for everything you've bought for me every day,” he freaked out and told me I owed him the stuff. 
On January 20, 2012, during an argument, Brandon threw me over the couch in our house, and then spit in my face several times. He was calling me names like “bitch,” “whore,” and “cunt.” I went running to our boss’s house who lived just a couple trailers down. I ended up sleeping there for the night, and multiple people went over to talk to Brandon and tried to calm him down. For the next couple days, he would not talk to me or look at me. 
He is such a piece of shit for doing what he did, and I should have been done with him right then.  
Brandon then went on a little drive with his dad down to Montana for a couple days. They ended up coming back on a Sunday. I woke up that morning feeling a little different than usual and decided I should probably take a pregnancy test. Sure enough, I was pregnant! I sat there on the toilet for probably 10 minutes crying, trying to decide what to do with myself. I had to tell him. Now that I look back on it, I guess I didn't have to tell him -- but I did. His dad started crying hysterically, and there they sat -- the two of them – bawling and hugging each other, while I stood there alone! There I was the pregnant person, standing there all by myself in the middle of the kitchen and those two idiots were sitting on the couch crying together! Yeah, that was really nice…. thanks for the comfort for me. 
From that moment on, it was never the same.  Everybody from work was so excited for me. My work family was so supportive and they made me go in and tell Brad, the boss of Knife River. He honestly couldn’t believe it, but he was happy for me. He mentioned several times that Brandon needed to settle down and get serious about life. I love all those people so much and they hold a special place in my heart for everything they did for me. 
From the moment that Brandon found out I was pregnant, he was drinking nonstop and was gone all the time. I was not allowed to go out anymore because I was pregnant, but he was out every single night! He could not care less that I wanted him there with me, or that I needed support. 
 One night, Brandon got into bed and told me to hug him goodbye. I told him to quit talking crazy, and to leave me alone and let me sleep. He pulled my blanket off and threw it in the kitchen. I told him to stop and to get away from me, then went and got my blanket and got back into bed. He pulled my blanket off of me and threw it over ten times. I was sick from being pregnant, and I was having really bad stomachaches. Brandon threw me on the bed and was squeezing my stomach! I was yelling at him because I was pregnant and was afraid he would hurt the baby, but he kept whispering in my ear that I was a “fucking whore” and that this baby wasn't his. I had to kick him several times so that he would get away from me! He finally left, driving drunk as usual. 
Over the next few days, I started bleeding and was in and out of the hospital multiple times. I tried to pack my things to leave, but I was too sick and was bleeding too much so that I just had to get into bed for a few days and let the neighbors put all my stuff back.  
I kept working until May 13th when Brandon came into the shop where I was working and started screaming at me in front of all the mechanics. Several of the mechanics were sitting there biting their tongues as hard as they could, because most of them knew how he treated me, and they could not stand him. At that time, the bosses were too worried about the safety of my unborn child and decided it was best for the health of me and my baby to come back to Utah. 
Chapter Four
 During the time that I was home, Brandon continued to call me names and claimed that the child was not his. I was collecting unemployment but made sure I had insurance and paid my $330 Cobra premium every month until my baby was born. It was a tough pregnancy, and I was put on bedrest for most of it because of the stress and trauma I had received in North Dakota. Contractions and early delivery had to be stopped twice, and I was in bed most of the summer. 
Brandon claimed he had changed, and he wanted me to go out to Wisconsin and Minnesota to see his family while I was pregnant. While we were there, he threw me onto the bed and ripped off all my clothes and was trying to examine me. He kept saying I was a cheater and that I had STD’s, and that this baby was not his. I cried the whole way to the airport. His step-mom took me and could not believe what he had said to me before we had left. When she got back to the house, she let him have it. 
 I got back to Utah and told him I was DONE! I had had enough! I was paying for this entire pregnancy alone, I was constantly being accused of cheating on him, and I was so sick of hearing him say this baby wasn’t his. He cried and cried and said I couldn’t leave him, and then I fell for it again. The week before the baby was born, Brandon came down to Utah.  As of that time, he had started using drugs heavily and my parents were extremely upset that he was at their house. Brandon screamed at me the whole way to the hospital and my grandmother told him multiple times to stop talking to me like that because I was in labor and could not handle the stress. He kept saying I was a piece of crap because I would not call “his” dad and invite him to come meet the baby! I was in labor, focusing on my breathing and counting contractions; I could not have cared less what his dad was doing. 
After I delivered my beautiful baby girl, Brandon continued to scream at me in front of all the nurses, saying he wanted a paternity test immediately because the baby had black hair and he didn’t think she was his. I was so happy and overjoyed with the birth of my daughter, and I could not believe that he was yelling at me! Looking back on it now, I honestly don't know why I didn't just kick him out of the house or the hospital. In fact, why did I even let him come down for the birth, after everything that he had put me through for that entire year?
We did the paternity test two days later and it came back 99.9999% positive that he was the father. I wanted my daughter to have the same last name as I have, and he freaked out and said absolutely not! 
 I had an awful postpartum from being yelled at all the time. I was in serious pain, and he kept forcing me to have sex with him. My baby wasn’t even a week old and he was making me have sex again.  I have never felt something so awful in my life! I would have much rather given birth again. I kept telling him how much it hurt me, but he didn’t care. 
Brandon went back up to North Dakota and refused to help me with anything. A month later, he told me I had to drive up there because I had his other pickup truck. In November of 2012, I drove up to North Dakota to be with Brandon, but he was in jail for getting into a bar fight. When he was released, we got into a fight. Brandon picked me up and threw me on the bed while I was holding the baby. He then grabbed my hands, causing the baby to fall onto the bed. He then pinned me down, screaming that I could never leave him because I was his woman and couldn’t go anywhere. My mom and his dad were both on speaker phone screaming at him to let me go. 
 A few days later, we drove to Wisconsin to visit Brandon’s family for Thanksgiving, and he left me there with no way of getting home. Brandon’s dad brought me my truck a week later. I wanted to return to Utah at that time, but Brandon made me drive back to North Dakota. As soon as we got there, he took my keys away and would not let me leave the house for three weeks. I had plans with my family for Christmas, but Brandon refused to let me leave to go home and spend the month of December with them. He also wouldn’t allow anybody in North Dakota to come visit me and the baby. 
Chapter Five
 Brandon finally let me and the baby go home to Utah for Christmas, but he would not let me drive my truck back; he said he had to drive us. We got there and he started using drugs again. On Christmas morning, he started such a huge fight with me because he didn’t want to get out of bed. My whole family was awake, waiting for him and he didn’t care. He packed all his stuff and refused to spend Christmas with me and my family. I wish so badly that I had just let him go. A few days later, he made me and the baby go back up to North Dakota with him. One week after that, Brandon was fired from Knife River for treating other female coworkers badly. Knife River is a corporate company, and they do not put up with women being treated like that. 
 We left North Dakota and went to Utah to get all that belonged to me and my baby, then drove to the state of Washington to his mother’s house. As soon as we got there, it was like I had been hit in the stomach and could never catch my breath. 
In February of 2013, Brandon started using methamphetamine and heroin, and he was drinking heavily. He grabbed the baby out of my arms and dropped her, causing her to hit her head. We were staying out at his dad’s house in Union, Washington, at that time.  I told his dad that Brandon wouldn't let me talk to anybody, that he wouldn’t let me leave the house, and that he was being extremely violent with me and the baby. His dad seem to sweep it under the rug and said, "We will be going to Alaska soon and it will be better." He was dead wrong. 
We boarded a plane with his dad in March and went to Alaska. Brandon had a job offer up there running equipment with the Local 302 Union for Washington and Alaska. The minute we got off the plane, Brandon started drinking and was up all night for weeks and slept all day. His dad was furious, but Brandon would not listen to him. Every time I told Brandon to call the Union for work, he claimed he was sick. 
On Easter of 2013, I walked with my baby into the kitchen to look at her Easter basket and found Brandon masturbating while watching a movie. He was so out of control.  I screamed and ran out of the room and hid the baby’s face. He then told me he would find someone else because I didn’t have sex with him enough. I had had it, I tried to book a ride back to the mainland with the only money I had saved up. We had been fighting for weeks and I couldn’t handle it anymore. He finally agreed to take me back home. I had been begging for him to take us back home for weeks.   

One day I woke up with severe pain in my stomach.  I had to drive two hours away to another town on the other side of the island to go to the only hospital on the Prince of Wales Island. Brandon didn't care; he stayed back at the house drunk while I drove myself to the hospital. I had a really bad bladder infection, and I had thrush all over my breasts. I had been telling Brandon for months that I needed to go to the doctor. The baby wasn't that old and I hadn't been to the doctor since I had her. He said I was fine, and he said I didn't need to go in, and that it wasn't a big deal. But it was a big deal.  I was in serious pain every single day and didn't know what was going on inside my body. I called his dad on my way back from the hospital and told him I was leaving. He was furious, but he couldn’t stop me at this point.  He wasn’t in Alaska with us anymore. We boarded two different ships and finally were on our way to the mainland. 
Once we got to Washington, Brandon started using meth and heroin again. He wouldn’t let me leave his dad’s house at all. He would leave in the middle of the night and would show back up drunk or high. He took my phone away and hid the keys every day before he fell asleep. I started having serious depression. I hadn’t seen my family in over 4 months, and he wouldn’t let me speak to them. I guess the hardest thing for someone to figure out when he/she has absolutely no choice in anything is how, what, and where is he/she going to get help from? I remember looking out the windows at the water thinking, “How am I going to get me and the baby out of here?” I wished I could just walk out into the water and not come back. But then I looked back down at that beautiful baby’s face which I was holding and I knew that I had to do everything I could to keep her safe. Have you ever had somebody talk to you in a way that just made you sick to your stomach? They didn't talk to you like they cared about you, but like they owned you?
Chapter Six
 I remember sitting there at three in the morning hearing Brandon’s truck come back, wondering where he'd been, but not really even caring -- praying so hard that he wouldn't try and come into the bedroom where the baby and I were sleeping. Then my door would slowly open and I would try to pretend like I was asleep, but I knew what was coming. He came in and tried to start kissing me, and I pushed him away just as the baby woke up again. "Get away from me!" I yelled at him, just as the baby starts to cry. "Get out of here and leave us alone!"  He stumbled backward, but I could not tell if he had been drinking or what he had been smoking. He had a weird scent on that night. He proceeded to tell me that he was just "set up" and that the girl that he was dealing with started acting weird, so he dropped her off at the police station and told her "go talk to your friends."  He then went outside and ripped his entire truck apart because he was certain that a GPS and recorder was in his truck. 
The next morning, I heard strange noises coming from downstairs.  No one ever went downstairs because it was gross, it was dirty, and there were spiders everywhere. I walked down there and into the bathroom, and there he was. He'd made some sort of contraption with a bunch of bottles and pipes. I can honestly say that in my 28 years I had never seen meth, I did not know what it smelled like, and I did not know what it looked like.  All I knew was that I was in the same house as the devil. I ran up the stairs as fast as I could to get away from him. 
 I remember waking up and looking out the window wondering why I was there, when I could leave, and if anybody had noticed they had not heard from me. I finally got the baby to sleep for a little while that morning, wishing I had a good cup of coffee, then went out and sat on the deck. Brandon got out of bed and came out to talk to me. The way he looked at me made me sick, but the way he looked made me more sick. "When can I leave?" I asked.  He just looked at me and said, “What do you mean, when can you leave? You are here because you are mine and you will never, ever leave me!" I choked back tears and proceeded to swallow the bile that had come up in the back of my throat. "You're never going to let me leave are you?" He just looked at me as he turned around to walk into the house and said, "I don't know why I even want you – you slept with someone last night while I wasn't here, you sick bitch!" I literally had to stop myself from throwing myself at him. I was already down to 110 pounds and I wouldn't be able to do anything against him. "What do you mean, I slept with someone? I don't know a single person in the state of Washington, and nobody even knows where I am!!" I said.  “You’re a liar," he said.  “You're a sick liar!" and then he turned around and walked back into his room, turned on the music, and slammed the door. Had I lost my mind? How could I have slept with someone the prior night? I had not seen a single person in weeks!  The only person I was ever with was the baby! Why would Brandon say such a thing to me? I did not want to sleep with anybody, especially him! 
 Later that day, I was in the kitchen making some food when Brandon came out of his bedroom and told me to take off my clothes. I told him, “No way am I taking off my clothes for you!" and tried to walk into the other room. He grabbed me by the wrist and threw me onto his bed. I remember thinking that I had just put the baby to sleep and hoped she didn’t wake up because Brandon slammed the door.  Right then, I heard her starting to cry. He wouldn't let go of me, he wouldn't stop. I just laid there crying, saying, “The baby -- the baby is awake!  She's crying -- let me up!" but he would not stop. As soon as he was done, he put on his clothes took one look at me and said, "I know you’ve been sleeping with someone else!"  He walked out of the house, got in the truck, and left. 
Chapter Seven
Looking back on it now I don't know why I let his words affect me so much. I wasn't losing my mind; I had not slept with anybody else! Why would somebody say that, and why would he make me feel so badly? The main thing that gets me now, looking back, is going into his bedroom one day and there he was, smoking heroin with at a ton of porn everywhere. I hate porn, I hate looking at porn, and I hate what porn does to people, I hate it! 
 I turned around and walked out and walked back into my room, shutting the door. He came running in and ripped the baby out of my arms.  She was screaming and crying hysterically for me.  He ran back into his bedroom and slammed the door in my face! He locked me out!  He had my baby, I was going to kill somebody! You better believe I almost beat that door down.  He finally opened it and threw me against the wall. At that point, it was the baby and me crying hysterically. Why did he do that?  Why would he rip a baby out of its mother's arms and throw her in another room and lock the door? Why? 
 He went and got in the shower, and finally I was able to get a hold of his phone. I called his mom. I called and begged her to come and get us! She finally came, but she walked into the house and tried to sit down and talk to both of us about trying to be with each other and make this work.  I said "NO" and packed up the belongings of me and my baby, then we left with her. Brandon followed us outside, screaming hysterically.  He ripped off all of my clothes, then all of the baby’s clothes out of the bags and threw them all over the ground.  He proceeded to scream at me in front of the neighbors. We finally got into her car and left.
We were at Brandon’s mom’s house for almost 3 weeks.  His dad kept telling me that he would be home soon and he would drive me back to Utah to my family. He also talked to my mom and told her multiple times that he would be bringing me home soon. I had not heard from Brandon for over a week.  His mom kept trying to say that he was sick out at his dad’s because he was trying to clean himself out. I knew that wasn’t true, but I let her believe what she wanted. 
Brandon showed up one morning and told me I needed to come back to his dad’s house with him, and I told him "No!" I told him that the baby and I were leaving! He started crying, not just a little bit but a lot. His mom came in and took the baby because apparently we needed to talk! He ripped the cell phone out of my hand then ripped the house phone out of the wall in the bedroom.  He ran into the kitchen and ripped the house phone out of that wall too, then he grabbed his mom's phone and his phone, running out the door screaming that I wasn't leaving and taking the baby. At that point, I told his mom I wanted to call the police. I wanted to go to the neighbors and use their phone and call the cops on him. She took one look at me and said, “You know the person with the marks on his body will not be the one who gets arrested!" I looked at her and said, "What do you mean by that?" and she said, "I believe you scratched him!" At that moment I knew I had to do something! He was violent, on many different kinds of drugs, and he was drinking.  His mom was willing to lie for him to keep that baby in that state, and his dad had been telling me what I wanted to hear for weeks. They had also been telling my mom what she wanted to hear, because she would have already come and got us if they had not promised her they would take us home. 
Chapter Eight
Later that night, Brandon came back.  He brought everybody's phones back and came into the bedroom and asked me again if I was leaving. I said, "Yes I am!" and he said that he had gone to the courthouse and was about to file paperwork against me. He said, “You'll never take that baby out of this state and away from me!" He grabbed me by the throat and threw me to the ground, ripping off the hood of my sweater in front of our child. His mother came in and took the baby because he said he was taking the baby with him and his mother knew he wasn’t sober. She shut the door and let Brandon choke me and rip my necklace off, continuing to scream and spit in my face, then he got up and left. The baby was finally sleeping so I made sure Brandon was really gone. I walked outside and made the most important phone call in my entire life. 
 That night I did not sleep at all. I had a plan, my parents had a plan, and our attorneys had a plan. That was probably one of the worst nights of my entire life! I was sick to my stomach hoping he didn't show up in the morning, hoping that his mom didn't freak out and call him, or that his dad did not show up randomly unannounced. I was scared to death!  Actually, scared to death doesn't even come close to what I was! 
My 6:30 a.m. alarm went off.  Nobody else in the house was awake yet. The baby was still asleep, so I grabbed a couple of our bags and took them outside. Fifteen minutes later, my mom called; they were 15 minutes away. My heart started racing. I started sweating and panicking, hoping that Brandon didn't show up and hurt my parents. My poor parents!  They had just driven all night long to come get us, and would then turn around and drive right back to Utah. 
As soon as his mom woke up and took one look at me, she knew something was going on. She asked me and I told her the truth. In a whirlwind of 10 minutes, my parents were there. I handed them my baby, we threw our belongings in the back of the truck and then strapped it down. As we were leaving, I asked Brandon’s mother to please not tell him for at least 10 minutes. My step-dad asked Brandon’s mom to offer us a prayer of safety, which she did, and we left. We were driving fast -- I mean really fast! My attorneys said we had to get out of the state of Washington as fast as we could. 
I finally looked at my mom.  I had been dreaming about looking at my mom for five months!! This was the happiest and saddest day of my whole life!  "Happy birthday mom!" I said, and I just looked at her. I really didn't think it was real.  I had been dreaming about this day, asking myself for so long "Why am I here? How am I going to leave?”  My mom!! It was my mom who finally saved us! When I say saved, I mean it! She saved my baby and she saved me! 

After we were out of the state of Washington, we called my attorneys and they electronically signed a paternity matter for me. They also filed a protective order against Brandon this same day. That was the longest drive of my entire life! 
We finally drove into the valley around midnight, I will never forget the feeling I had when my home town came into view. I was home!  I was FINALLY HOME!
I was diagnosed with PTSD and anxiety and depression when I got back. My baby wouldn't let anyone hold her who wore a baseball cap for months. She had night terrors for a long time, but the counselor said that they would eventually go away and she would forget what she had witnessed. My baby and I went to two counseling sessions a week for six months. I lost so much weight that I didn't even look like myself, and I lost most of my hair from stress. Brandon got an attorney for about five seconds; he tried to convince them that I was a drug user and an awful mother. 
Chapter Nine
 Brandon and his mom continued to harass me for months. His mom kept threatening me that she was going to say I was a drug user and that she was going to take the baby away from me. The police in Utah finally had to call his mom and tell her that she had to leave me alone or she would be charged with harassment. Brandon continued to call me nonstop at all hours of the day and mostly in the middle of the night. He would leave 5-minute-long voicemails threatening me, and then he’d call back 15 minutes later crying hysterically. He would usually call around 3:30 every morning. He had people harassing me on Facebook and messaging me crazy things. He would call my bank and pretend like we were still together and try to pull money out of my account. Our court date was set, and I couldn’t wait! I was scared to death. I met with the ladies at CAPSA, as well as with numerous social workers from the State of Utah. They got me into counseling and set me up on a program to be able to heal and support my daughter. I will forever be grateful for these many people who spent time with me and my daughter to help us cope with what we had gone through. 
 Our stipulated temp orders were filed on July 22, 2013.  I went and had a hair follicle test and another drug test. I also went to more counseling to prove that I wasn't a drug-using mother. From there, Brandon continued to badger me nonstop. The only thing he didn’t agree with was that he didn’t think he should have to pay any child support and that he didn’t want “supervised” visitation. That was fine -- I don’t want any money from him, but he sure as hell was having supervised visitation if he was to EVER see my daughter. His attorney said he refused to do hair follicle testing because it would come back dirty, and so would any urinalyses. He never showed up for mediation or any court dates, so his attorney ended up quitting. His step-mom then called to tell me his attorney had a bunch of money to give me. I’m sure it was his retainer that he had given to her, but I’m not sure how he could just take it back from her. My attorneys told me just to ignore anything he said. Because our attorneys came to an agreement without the judge getting involved, they dropped my protective order at that time against him.
 Brandon was admitted into a mental/drug rehabilitation facility in October of 2013. A week or two later, he was kicked out due to them finding drugs in his possession. He kept going back to the rehab in Elma, Washington, and was arrested twice for criminal trespassing on November 23, 2013, and November 24, 2013. He was calling me from rehab, and also from the jail in Elma. My attorneys sent letters to both places asking them to not let him contact me.
On November 29, 2013, Brandon was arrested in Clackamas, Oregon, for robbery III and assault IV.  He started calling me from jail. His father convinced the court that he had mental disorders and they committed him to a mental institute in Clackamas, Oregon, for a few weeks. He informed his dad as well as me that as soon as he got out of the hospital in Oregon he was coming down to take me away, that we were going to get married and be together forever. His dad and my attorneys asked me to talk to him and try and get him to start thinking clearly. I told him that we were not together, and that we would never be together again. He could not accept it. He was calling me nonstop from the hospital in Oregon, and since he hadn’t tried to harm himself or anybody else while he was there, he was let go to his father who promised he would return him for court a week later. He never did  show back up and now has warrants in Oregon for over $30,000. 
 Since Brandon was saying crazy things to me, it was then we decided that I needed a protective order. I filed my protective order the first week of December of 2013. Less than a week later, my sister found some of his personal belongings in her driveway. At that time, I asked to have the protective order amended to add my entire family. My attorneys called Brandon’s dad, who said he had tried to pick Brandon up in Oregon, but Brandon had decided to drive straight to Utah. Brandon and his dad waited at our house and my sister’s house for a few hours, but since nobody came home from work they left and started heading towards Montana. From there, he left his dad in the middle of nowhere. His dad was furious and said some things to my attorneys which he most likely regrets at this point.
Chapter Ten
From there, Brandon went back up to North Dakota where he was arrested on December 10, 2013, for false reporting to a police officer, simple assault, theft of property, and disorderly conduct. He once again started calling me from jail. I called the jail and let them know I had a protective order against Brandon.  They asked me to send it to them. From there, it was served to Brandon again and the jail called to let me know that he had it in his possession. He was let out of jail.  He had somehow convinced the prosecuting attorney that he had lost his truck keys and that he had no way to leave. He ended up right back in jail within 24 hours. From there, he was transferred to another mental facility in the state of North Dakota, from where he started calling me again.  He was once against served my protective order. They pushed his next court date out a few weeks and let him go. He never showed back and now has warrants in the state of North Dakota. 
 Brandon showed up to our house on December 20, 2013.  He was trying to come into our back door. He was stopped by my step-dad and asked to get back into his truck and leave. He said he was there for Christmas, and he was talking crazy about us being filmed by satellite and how he worked for a spy agency out of Brooklyn, New York. I was in the house on the phone with the police. He eventually left and was pulled over by a sheriff a couple miles away. He got out of his truck and started running away. From what I understand, a TASER was used on him, and he was taken to jail where he attacked a bunch of cops and a TASER was again used. Apparently, they tried to take a blood sample to prove what his blood alcohol and drug levels were, and he ripped off his shirt and told them, “Over my dead body!” and to come and get it. From there, I’m not sure exactly what happened. They served him my protective order once again the next morning, and the deputy called me to let me know he had been served again. 
Brandon started calling me from jail again. At that point, I called the jail back after which they pulled the video and charged him with violating my protective order. They didn’t charge him for violating my protective order by going to my house the night before because they did not have proof that North Dakota had served him the protective order. Since my old pickup truck was at the impound, and because my name was still on the truck, I went and got all of the belongings of me and my baby which Brandon still had. 
Brandon was released to his dad, who swore he would take Brandon up to a rehab in Washington and get him admitted. When his dad went and picked up the pickup truck from the impound, he ended up getting into a fight with the owner. They almost had to call the police on him. They couldn’t not let me get into the truck to get my things because my name was on the registration. His dad threatened the impound and almost beat up the owner. From there, they left and Brandon never entered a rehab/mental institute in Washington. He had multiple warrants in Utah.  

Chapter Eleven
After that, Brandon went on the down low for a few months. He was then arrested in Los Angeles, California, on May 20, 2014, for having meth in an airport. Once again, he started calling me from jail in California. He called over 10 times. Every time it was a weird number and he stayed on the line long enough that it left a voicemail saying it was from a correctional facility. I let the police know, and the sheriff’s office called the police office in LA multiple times, but they seemed not too worried about it. He was being charged on federal felony drug charges for having meth in LAX. They gave him time served and he was released a month later. At that point, I had to report my old pickup truck stolen because it was never recovered in Los Angeles. 
Brandon then went back up to Washington, and I was informed he had been arrested for stealing a car on July 3, 2014. He got out of jail and three days later on July 6, 2014, was back in jail for assault. He was released again, and on July 19, 2014,he was driving intoxicated in his mother’s car and hit a police car. Brandon and the officer both went to the hospital. He pled guilty to these felony charges, but is now appealing them. I’m not sure how you can appeal hitting a police officer and injuring all parties involved badly enough that you both go to the hospital, but whatever. 
 While he was in jail in Washington, Brandon started calling and writing letters again. I called the jail and they served the protective order to him once again. The calls stopped for a time, and then I got another letter. They had put a hold on anything that said my name.  They took away his privileges to write letters completely because he sent another letter to me but put my daughter’s name on the letter instead of mine. The police up in Washington said they had stopped his mail altogether and that they had a couple more letters that he had written to me that were intercepted. As soon as I called up there, the police officer seemed very upset, and when I said Brandon’s name, he seemed furious. The Washington State Attorney said they were having huge problems with Brandon. He said that when he was first arrested he was covered in needle marks head to toe, and this attorney had never seen anybody with such rage and anger problems as Brandon.
 While all of this was going on, I had still been going to court for custody of my daughter. Eventually, after going to court for over a year, the commissioner finally granted me sole custody of my daughter on July 7, 2014. Brandon never actually came to one single court date! The day that I was given sole custody was probably the best day of my entire life! I had been doing everything in my power to keep my baby safe. When the commissioner finally looked me in the eye and said, “Good job, Miss Goldie, you're a great mother!" I almost passed out.  I started crying and I will never forget that feeling and how happy I was! I have never prayed that hard in my entire life, I have never begged so much for the safety of a child, and I have never had such sad and dark feelings inside of me towards somebody! 
 Brandon remained in jail up in Washington state through the remainder of 2014.  He was transferred down to the state of Utah in January of 2015, where he was being charged with violation of my protective order x5 and stalking. He had now been clean for almost an entire year, the longest that he had gone without any kind of drugs or alcohol. When people were talking to him, they could tell that he was not right in the head -- they said you could tell that something wasn’t clicking. 
 I had to go to court multiple times, but I was standing outside the doors so that Brandon did not get to see me. I did get to peek my head in the door and see him for about two seconds. It made me instantly sick and I wanted to throw up. Seeing him sitting there in shackles in a bright pink jail jumpsuit in the same room as me made me so sick. They had offered him multiple deals, but he refused all of them. Finally, the day before trial was set, he finally agreed to plead guilty to two Class A misdemeanors violating my protective order. I was so relieved that I didn’t have to go in front of him and testify against him. I was scared to death and was having panic attacks again. From there, he agreed to leave the state of Utah and not come back.  He was put on probation and was supposed to check in with his probation officer monthly and let them know where he was. He has finally left me alone and not contacted me.  I am so glad that the state of Utah took this seriously and finally got him to realize he has to leave me alone. 
Brandon was released to his dad and they went back up to Washington. At this time, he is in jail again for domestic violence, which is a probation violation in Utah and Washington. I’m hoping they just decide to leave him in there. 
 Abuse is real! I have been free from Brandon for over two years now, but not one single day goes by that I don’t think about it. I wish so badly that I could forget what he did to me. I wish so badly that I had just left North Dakota right when I found out I was pregnant and that I had never let him know. I wish so badly that I had the courage to call the cops the first time I was thrown over a couch, or the first time I was locked in the house and wasn’t allowed to talk to anybody.  However, I cannot change the past -- I cannot redo any of it. The only thing I can do now is move forward and protect my daughter at all costs. She is an angel; she was sent to me from God and I truly believe that she has saved my life. I don’t know where I would be without her, and it honestly scares me to think of where I would be. I have always been a strong person, and have never let anybody have this kind of control over me. It scares me, but it also gives me courage to be able to talk about it now that so many states are involved, and now that the law is on the side of me and my daughter to keep us safe. I will do anything in my power to keep my daughter safe and away from such an abusive person. There are many amazing people out there who can help you. There are so many counselors and amazing people who will do anything they can to help abused women and children. There is hope -- you can do it! My mother saved me and my daughter. I love her so much – she has always stood by me, no matter how bad I screwed up! She never gave up on me, and when I really needed her more than anything, even though she was three states away, she was there! Mothers are amazing, and I love mine more than anything. Thank you mom!

I grew up in the West loving the outdoors and writing.  I write down everything.  I am a list maker and a note taker.  My family is the most important thing in my life and they have stood by me through thick and thin.  My daughter is my pride and joy.  She keeps me going and on my toes.  This is a true story about myself and my daughter and her first few years of life.  It was extremely hard for me to write.

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