I’m not staying quiet anymore

I frequently am put into situations where I have to accept my fate. I thought I had to shut up about it and, as they say, take it like a man. I have changed my mind. From now on, it’s going to be the good, the bad and the ugly.

Running away from home

I tried to run away from home when I was five years old. I attempted to flee the physical abuse that the Jehovah’s Witnesses encouraged towards children. They take Proverbs 13:24 literally. It says, “Those who spare the rod of discipline hate their children. Those who love their children care enough to discipline them.” This bible teaching encourages physical violence towards children.

When my mother caught me running away, the “discipline” was severe enough to realize that I needed to plan my next escape.

The daily spankings turned into daily beatings as I grew up.

Consequences

When you’re in a cult, you understand that you’re pretty much going to be on your own once you leave. When your whole family is in the cult, then you have nobody.

My dream of studying art

I always wanted to study art and become an artist. Meeting Monsieur Carrier in grade two sealed the deal for me. My art teacher Joachim Pedneault insisted I continue my art education in high school. How he even managed to convince a Jehovah’s Witnesses Elder to allow his son to study art still puzzles me today. I remain eternally grateful to Joachim because he played a crucial role in my freedom and escaping the cult.

The cost of a life of art

People who supposedly love you will do everything in their power to try to make you stop painting. They make your life miserable in all kinds of ways. They have all tried to get me to give up on my art with everything from starvation to divorce.

Someone messed with my life again

I got married, and not only did I have a wife, but I gained a family. I got a proxy dad and mom, brothers and sisters and a large extended family, and I loved it.

Ask yourselves this then, why would I fuck it up?

Think about it for a second.

I know I got thrown under the bus when I got divorced, just like I did when I left the cult years earlier. I didn’t cheat, for the record, even though someone may have told you this, or you may have just assumed that it happened. I honestly hoped for, looked for and actively worked on a solution, just for the record, but the reason why we got divorced has to do with something that no one has any control over.

What no one really knows is that I did it for my ex.  I did it out of love.

Alone again

People will tell you to stay in touch and that you will always be welcome. It’s simply not true. People take sides and, for the most part, listen to one side of the story. I’ve never been allowed to tell my side of the story. Do people really want to hear my story?

No.

Do people care?

No.

No longer a complete loss

I have Annie. Everyone else disappeared.

Life goes on

I work in the studio every day. Our lives are simple and uncomplicated. There is just me and her taking care of her three kids.

This is yet another chapter in my life as an artist.

Quote of the day

“I don’t want anyone who doesn’t want me.”

― Oprah Winfrey―

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