The day that I meet my first husband was also the day I meet the man I’d later let brand me. It was at a party at a dinging, dirty, disgusting trailer in the country side. The trailer was owned by my first husband’s mother and he was the only one residing in it. Living off mommies coat tails as I use to say. Jeff was the cousin I am not sure if there was an actual blood relation as Keith called many cousin’s who weren’t actually that. Jeff was tall and mysterious. He worked at the same job that I had at the time. When I moved in with Keith it was Jeff that was my protector. It was him who would hand me the Tylenol after the fights. I grew close to him and his family. Nicki his cousin and right hand becoming my very best friend. The only person I had trusted back then. I remember not knowing that shaving pubic region was a thing and Jeff chasing me around the house telling me I had a bush. He took pliers teasing he would pull them out. It was only a few months into living together that Keith’s jealousy ended Jeff residing in our home. Jeff got into trouble and he went on the run. It never stopped us from talking. Throughout years of being in opposite states and separate lives we always stayed in contact. Jeff eventually got picked up and sent to prison. Letter after letter I sent to him. Telling him all of my deepest secrets I held so close. Phone calls and letters continued throughout the years. We made plans of marriage of him whisking me away from all that was and us creating a life together. I am not sure any of the outside world knew how close we had grown. Of course I am not sure if that was only existing in my reality or if he shared such thoughts. It felt like a lifetime he was incarcerated and life carried on on the outside of those bars. From 0 to 8 kids I had gone. When he got out I wasn’t single but dropped everything to run to him. I left the man I was dating at his home to be picked up and taken to Jeff. I had no words to mouth to him. I was shocked he was here standing before me. This was the day my dreams were suppose to come true. This was suppose to be the time that my fairy tale would begin. Yet neither of us could speak to the other. We spent the majority of the day together like that. Barely speaking not having any words. I texted of my children and I am sure that was an overwhelming conversation. He had not planned to come home to a ready made family of the numbers mine had. Another girl was texting him too… One who was a friend of a friend or maybe she was suppose to be a friend too. The second that I heard I had held a vengeance and anger in my heart for her. Jeff teased to the house how she was speaking of blowing him and needing a ride there. Everything I had believed in was a lie. I just kind of distanced myself for awhile. My return to the group showed them now in a relationship. I tried not to think of the empty promises and of the lifetime of letters. The more time I was around the more Jeff made it clear he had a burning desire to sleep with me. He married….. It deterred nothing. He would ask me over with lies or claims to needing smoke or wanting to tat me and then take each opportunity to touch me he could. My mind went in two entirely different directions. One side thinking this man is playing you he is married who cares if he is unhappy your no ones second choice. The other side thinking that this man came home from prison and you had over a half a dozen kids. How could he not be overwhelmed can you blame him for not choosing you? Let him make things right it’s you he loves. I would cling to everything he said. The speaking of how awful his marriage was. How love less it was. I would hear his wife with the same complaints. The day he did the tattoo on my back the one that was suppose to be a tinker bell but who knows what the final outcome is cause I surely can’t tell. He kissed down my neck and confessed his love for me. Months went by like this. Text, calls, adultery. I don’t even know who I became. I did every single thing he asked. I never questioned the pain I would cause when everything came to light. Why the hell should I feel guilty clearly she took him from me. He placed every doubt in their marriage I needed into my head. I told him I could not be in his bed unless he left her. That night when I left their home I thought it was over. I had refused sex and left him angry. I told him it was over I would no longer continue this lie of a life. By 7 am my phone had been ridden with calls of him leaving her. He had packed his things was at his mothers and waiting for me. My heart raced maybe he did love me. Maybe him being with her was a mistake and now he was going to right all the wrongs in my heart and be mine. I ran to him. Letting in drama and anger from every direction. I took off to the next state hiding in hotel rooms. Dreaming of a life with him. Laying on a bed one day he told me I was his and would be his till the day I died. I had conformed to being exactly what he wanted. I went to bat with my landlord to allow him to live in a home he was not legally able. I allowed cps into my life because of his background. The wife he had was biter and rightfully so as she too tried many avenues to ruin my life. Laying on that bed though everything seemed perfect. I mean he was with me telling me he loved me. That I was his. I laid back and he asked to brand me his. How my mind could think that this was a good idea I have no idea. The 26 year old me sure had a lot she needed to learn. I allowed him to tattoo his name all the way across my vagina and take pictures to share with the world. Can you imagine the backlash I got and the pride he took in branding me property. I truly believed I belonged to him. Belonged to a man as if I was property a married man. One that was not my husband. Things went down hill from the moment I allowed him to brand me. Everything I couldn’t see I can now. The selfishness that was Jeff. I had allowed myself to become someone that was a disgrace to my character. I can’t escape the memories as I am still branded. I am amazed by how much a man is able to change me and who I am. Bringing in one toxic man will destroy all that is good in your life. I can’t forgive myself for who I became while thinking I was in love with him. I can’t forget it as much as I wish I could. I want to forgive myself for the choices I made with a foggy mind. I wish I had known then what I know now. I wish I could take back the foul choices I made.