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Ruined Childhood By Beth Connolly Published by Beth Connolly at Smashwords Copyright 2011 Beth Connolly Thank you for downloading this free eBook. Although this is a free book, it remains the copyrighted property of the author, and may not be reproduced, copied and distributed for commercial or non-commercial purposes. If you enjoyed this book, please encourage your friends to download their own copy at Smashwords.com, where they can also discover other works by this author. Thank you for your support.


“How could you, Greg?” Suzy asked with tears streaming down her face. Her eyes were red and puffy, completely bloodshot from all the crying she had been doing. Her marriage had been going so well. She had a beautiful daughter and a larger than life husband who owned his own farm. He had seemed so nice, so sincere in his love. “I just did,” he said coldly, not even trying to make it better. His eyes were cold and uncaring; he didn’t love her anymore. “Did you even think of Elly? Did you even think of what this would do to her? What’s she gonna think of you now, Greg?” she asked him desperately her bloodshot eyes drenched with torrents of tears. All she could think of was her precious daughter and how she was going to spare her the hurt. But she knew that wasn’t possible; it never is in a divorce. “She’ll get through it,” he said unthinkingly, ignoring the sound of little footsteps down the hall. He had convinced himself from the very beginning of the affair that it wouldn’t matter to his seven-year old daughter, Elly. “No, she won’t! She practically idolizes you, Greg. Do you know how bad you’ll be breaking her little heart?” Suzy asked him, the pain seeping into her voice. She had known that this was coming but she hadn’t expected it so soon. The extra hours at work, the new ranch hand, it had all happened so fast. Then, Elly walked into the room. “Daddy? Mommy?” she asked in her sweet little voice. She took a minute to rub her eyes with her little fists before looking at her mom and dad. She smacked her lips a bit as she took in the awful sight before her. Suzy looked at her daughter despair in her eyes. Elly didn’t understand what was going on. Why were her parents fighting? “Oh, honey. Why don’t you go back to bed,” Suzy said soothingly trying to shoo her only daughter back to bed. She took Elly’s hand for a moment, but then she jerked it back surprising her mom. “No! I want to know what’s going on,” she said defiantly sticking her chin out. Her lips pouted and her blue eyes were confused as she stood there, her arms now crossed against her chest. “Mom,” she whined. Suzy sighed and then spoke. “Sweetey, mommy and daddy aren’t going to live together anymore. Daddy and mommy are splitting up.” And then Elly’s world started crashing down on her.


“Daddy” “I’m sorry, sweetey, but it’s true,” he said. He looked away for a moment and then back at his whimpering daughter. He hated that look on her face; it was a mixture of pure sadness and hate as if she could tell it was his fault. “Sweetey,” he said trying to put his hand on her shoulder and squat down so that he could talk to her better. By now tears were streaming down her pale cheeks. Elly sniffled loudly and pulled her arm back from her father. “No!” she screamed as best as a seven-year old could. Her father sighed. He should have known this was coming. “Elly, honey, I have to go,” he whispered looking at her with sad brown eyes. “But why, daddy? Why!” she cried grabbing a hold of him and clinging tight. “I just have to sweetey,” Greg said pulling her into his arms and just hugging her for a minute. Eventually he pulled away and stood up. He was ready to go. “Daddy!” Elly cried one last time. She ran to him and hugged him before he walked out the door. He didn’t even look back as he left behind the only things that ever really meant anything to him. “They’ll get by without me,’ he told himself reassuringly on the way to the bar. If he was going to get through this he would need a few drinks. “Besides they don’t need me anyway.” Meanwhile, Elly sat in her mother’s lap crying into her shoulder. Her eyes were puffy and red. Snivels escaped every two seconds as she sat there motionless, unbelieving. “How could he do this to her?” Suzy wondered and so did Elly as they sat there in the silence. Suzy didn’t even think about herself in all of this. All she could think about was poor little Elly. “Shh, hush little baby don’t you cry. Mommas’ gonna give you a…” She stopped singing and started humming. She couldn’t give Elly what she wanted: her father back. Elly was lulled to sleep by the quiet tune of the song. She dreamt sweet wishful dreams, dreams of her father coming back but even as she slept she knew that they could never happen. Greg wasn’t coming back. “So, how many of those you gonna drink?” the bartender asked sadly as Greg downed his tenth glass of beer on tap. The bartender looked at him for a bit. He saw that Greg’s eyes were clouded and foggy looking. He was way past drunk. Greg hiccupped before


answering. “As many as I can afford,” he said drunkenly hiccupping a bit more as he said it. The bartender shook his head sadly having seen this so many times. It wasn’t even funny. He pointed to the door signaling that it was time for Greg to leave. So, Greg left the bar and started driving down the road. Greg forgot to put on his headlights in his drunken manor and didn’t see the truck driving straight at him. The impact of the two vehicles killed both him and the truck driver… ### Author’s Note: When I was in fifth grade I wrote this but what I wrote was a mere skeleton. It started out with barely any emotion or meat to it but when I found it again years later I decided to make it shall we say spiffier. In reality it was intended to be a prologue or whatever it is you call those things where they show the past then jump to the present. But for now it’s just a story, a mere inkling of a girl’s life. To me Suzy’s that perfect mother figure. She’s the kind of mother everyone wants, the kind that’ll cuddle you when you’re sad, that will make you pancakes on a rainy day and kiss you to sleep at night. Elly’s the victim as are most children of divorces. It hits you hard when you’re a kid. You don’t understand why mommy and daddy are fighting so often and then you don’t understand why daddy isn’t sleeping with mommy in the same bedroom anymore. You don’t know why daddy sleeps on the couch or why mommy has dark circles under her eyes. You don’t know why daddy gets home late. But after a while it finally hits home. Daddy doesn’t look at mommy the same way he used to. He doesn’t kiss her when he leaves for work or when he gets back from work. It’s obvious now. They don’t love each other anymore, or at least one of them doesn’t love the other. So the end begins. That’s the way it always starts, with one losing that inseparable love for the other. And then there comes separation and then pain. So it ends up ruining that child’s childhood. Sure, some kids get past it pretty quickly but from experience I can say that it’s not easy. It doesn’t matter if you don’t remember mommy, or if you don’t remember daddy. That gap is still there.


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Ruined Childhood