Friday, October 23, 2009

Character of the Week: Amy!

Hello everyone. My name is Amy Thompson, and I’m very nervous about introducing myself. Though I have the honor of being the main character in a trilogy, I am most comfortable in obscurity.

I grew up in the small, Northern California town of Oroville. My father was a functioning, abusive alcoholic; my mother a shy, beaten woman who spent all her energy surviving her marriage and had nothing to give her two children. I survived my childhood by hiding and keeping my mouth shut at all costs; my brother succumbed to our father’s method of coping - booze and violence.

On my eighteenth birthday I found my mother lying dead at the foot of the stairs, and as I left my home for the last time, I vowed I wouldn’t end up with my mother’s fate. I closed the doors on my childhood, and everyone who hurt me.

My story is journey of self discovery.

To avoid the fate of my mother - a life of fear lived and ended at the whim of an alcoholic - I first had to journey in her shoes, and make my own choices about love, and loyalty. Had either of my great loves been the abusive monster I remembered my father to be, the choice to leave would have been easy.


First there was Robert Crane; impulsive, romantic, devoted to his family and religious beliefs. More boy than man; with a multitude of fears and insecurities. Watching his alcoholism develop, I was able to see how my mother could have lived with such a brute as my father. Love supersedes logic; until it is too late for choice.

Then I met my soul mate: his best friend Calvin Mertz. Over the next four years of emotional turmoil, I fell in love with Cal. Though the attraction was instant, and mutual, Cal’s brotherly loyalty to Robert forbade our love. Finally I was willing to leave both for the fulfillment of my vow; but fate intervened, and with Roberts death, an opportunity for true happiness.


So begins the second novel, and the convoluted story of marriage to an addict. Deeply involved in his cousin’s illicit organization, but driven by his passionate love for his father’s small construction business, my husband was again torn between loyalties.  As for me, I had to decide which was the greater act of courage: to abandon my husband and in his hour of greatest need, or trust his word this was the final job for organization, payment for a new beginning for them all.

Have you ever faced an insurmountable choice? How do you react in the face of your deepest fears?

19 comments:

Nevin said...

Hi, Amy! I think love is just beautiful. I'm sorry it hasn't worked out for you very well.

Kalila said...

Actually, Amy, you'd be very wise to leave love alone. It's a dangerous human distraction from the important matters of achieving what you want in life.

Nevin said...

Don't listen to her, Amy. Djinns are rather cynical.

Amy Thompson said...

Nevin: actually it has worked out, I am happy I met, and loved, both men. They helped me understand my mother and the choices she made better.

My life would be desolate indeed Kalila if I had not at least tried love. I was so lonely until I allowed a relationship - even a tumultuous one - to form.

Do you have anyone you are attached to emotionally? Someone you might even, just a tiny bit, say you love? It doesn't even have to be romantic love, just someone you care deeply for, and feel your life has been enriched by knowing.

Bo said...

Don't ask Kalila those kinds of questions, Amy. She'll get mad. Djinns don't admit weaknesses.

So how invested are you in your relationship? Not much is happening around here today. Want to sneak off for a quickie?

Nevin said...

Leave her alone, Bo. I'm sure she loves her husband very much.

Sorry, Amy. There's no accounting for the behavior of an incubus.

Devi Marconi said...

Hi, Amy! I'm glad you were willing to share a bit of yourself today. It's not so bad, is it?

As for choices, well, as I shared last week, I've experienced my own hard decisions. Leaving my husband and children for the possibility of a life with my long-lost first love wasn't easy, but I had to do what was best for my soul.

Though I still miss Olivia - admittedly, my favorite daughter - I know it was ultimately the right decision... for all of us.

Amy Thompson said...

(BLUSHING) Ah,

Cal's an awesome lover, very inventive. Might even be able to teach an incubus a few tricks about the joys of submission.

Or, Kalila could . .

(Blushes again)

Olivia, I'm so glad you are happy with your choices. Easy choices, especially about life and the people we love, show how much we care about and value the people in our lives.

Robert was a generous person, loving and romantic, impulsive in nature when sober. And could he sing . .

And Cal, the love of my life, so loyal and talented as a businessman. It is only his uncontrollable dual nature that flaws him. That need for constant action is worse than the meth addiction.

But, I do love him, though I have to leave him for the sake of my children, as I'm sure you loved your own daughter.

I'm sure she understands, especially now that she has her own family to care for. Family changes everything.

Candy said...

Hi Amy, I don't understand why you had to relive your mother's problems instead of learning from them and marrying the opposite type of man? I ran off with a Goth boy the exact opposite of my boring father but i soon knew it would be a terrible mistake to marry him and know I would never go with Mike's sort again. I also learned that I would never marry anyone as dull as my father. I don't want to experience my mother's life for sure!
Maybe I misunderstand the description of your life. I hope so, or your mother must be turning in her grave.

Ginger said...

To be perfectly honest, I face difficult choices by putting them off for so long that eventually the decision becomes irrelevant.

It sounds like that's what you did in your first marriage. It's what I did.

But then, I don't have any children, either. I think it would be different if I were responsible for someone else's welfare. Right now, the only one who suffers is me.

However, if your husband is addicted to drugs, I think that pretty much breaks all agreements. Meth is very bad. I mean, I don't actually know anyone who's used it, but it seems to be as bad or worse than heroin.

Ginger said...

PS I am so sorry for all you've gone through! I think you deserve to be with someone who will take care of you, not the other way around.

I hope you find him.

How old are your children, and what are their names?

Devi Marconi said...

I'm with Ginger. I, too, am sorry for all you've gone through, Amy. I hope that, if you must leave Cal (despite his being your soul mate), you will learn from your first two marriages and make a better choice the third time around... if you even feel inclined to marry again.

Olivia Harper said...

Well, what's that expression, Mom? Third time's a charm? Perhaps it will be so for you, Amy.

Nutmeg Cross said...

I'm a bit sensitive to familial abandonment. My own mother left me and my dad when I was just a toddler - and her abrupt departure has left scars on both of us.

But I get the feeling she wasn't really prepared to be a mother, so perhaps it's better that she left when she did.

In the same way, it's probably better for your own kids, Amy, if, despite your love for Cal, you make a safer, less destructive home for them. On my journey to find my mother, I've met some serious meth heads, and that addiction is not pretty, I know.

Amy Thompson said...

CANDY: I understand your misconception about walking in my mother’s shoes. Maybe I can clarify a bit.

My father, as long as I knew him, was a violent alcoholic. I never understood entirely why my mother did not leave him; how she tolerate not only the abuse he heaved on her, but for what he did to myself and my brother. Make no mistake, it was a horrendous childhood.

When I met Robert he was a heavy drinker, but not violent in any way. Yes, he drank to excess of everyone else, but he could go days or without a single drink, and weeks without even getting drunk. He was impulsively romantic, popular with friends, adored by his adoptive family, and deeply religious. And, sexually shy, like me. We learned healthy sexual relations together.

He only became mean when drunk, and not always abusive. I had hope. This was a part of my I never witnessed, and since I would never be with a man who displayed my that personality up front, I could understand that perhaps my father was also, in the beginning of their relationship, a worthy man.

In her generation, women did not work outside the home, and were completely dependent on their husbands for support. Having been cut off from her own family and no income or resources of her own, and fearful for her life if she left (Robert was NEVER nearly that abusive) what was she to do?

Thus my understanding of her desperate situation. I had more choices, especially with Cal, as Cal never hit me, and was always loving and supportive with our children. My issues with leaving revolved around family pressures; the love their families bore not only them, but for me.

Whew, this is complicated, and would take an entire novel to explain. But, I hope I was able to answer your concern for me Candy.

Amy Thompson said...

Oops! Should read: This was a part of my (father) I never witnessed . .

And thanks, everyone, for your kind sympathies. I hope my comment to Candy answered most of your concerns for me.

As for new love, a "third times the charm" relationship, my author is generous enough in the third novel to allow a very healthy relationship with "the perfect man."

But that, is an incomplete story.

My children are 13 and 11 when Cal's last run lands him in prison for six years, but the damage had already been done to form the personalities they would carry into adulthood.

Again, too complicated for such a small window for comments.

Just know they turn out really well, despite my indecision. Their journey's are nearly as wonderous as my own, and perhaps they will one day write their own stories.

Christine H said...

Amy, thank you so much for being our Character of the Week!

You have the honor of picking next week's special guest. Whom shall it be?

Amy Thompson said...

Thanks everyone for allowing me to share a portion of my journey with you.

I haven't been here long, so don't know many of the awesome characters, so I'll pick one I've seen often over the last few weeks.

Nutmeg Cross, because I think we share a kindred spirit. I would be very interested to get to know you Nutmeg.

Nutmeg Cross said...

Really? Thanks, Amy. Now, I feel honored.