Tanqueray

Why don’t you come on over, why don’t you come on over Tanqueray?

Alcoholism is the coping skill of choice for 99% of all three sides of my family (step-family included). The only thing that changes with family is the last name and what you’re drinking at parties. For one of my grandmothers, affectionately dubbed Nunu, her poison is Tanqueray. Even in the deepest pits of my eight years of alcoholism, I never even tried a sip of that garbage. It was a line not even wasted I would cross.

Nunu is a distant relative of Satan. Not even Satan wants to hear from this woman. I am convinced he is building a new version of Hell that he can send her to so that if and when she dies (evil can’t die but I’m hoping she will), they will not have to share a space. Yes, I say all of my relatives are directly linked to Satan. Meet them and see what I’m talking about, and then you’ll understand why they get blog posts specifically about their brand of evil.

Even as a child, I had very little to do with Nunu. She was gross, she smelled like hand sanitizer (what I now know to be the Devil’s liquid), and cigarettes. Her voice was hoarse, her skin was flaky, and she was decrepit for her age. She often went on tangents about absolutely nothing, and she put even the most professional paranoid schizophrenic to shame. My family ladies and gentlemen, the bloodline ends with me.

I do not remember spending much time with her. I do not remember warm embraces. I do not remember Nunu baking cookies or showing up to important life events. I remember one event, and one event only. It has been 14 years and it has been seared into my memory bank against my will.

I would have been 13 or 14 at the time, and by that point in our lives it was the beginning of a downfall. I had been actively cutting for several years, was in a deep depression, and my family had lost everything financially. I knew we were moving states, most of my possessions had been sold, and I knew I was to lose everything I had left in a short time. Things were really looking up. I was at the family desktop computer (I know, I’m old) in the living room. I controlled my ITunes and YouTube playlists from here, I checked my email, and I just fucked around. All in the living room! Activate stealth mode. Now this computer was essentially my dad’s workspace, so there was also, wait for it, a home-phone.

Now for the life of me, I do not know why or how this happened. I assume me and my sperm donor were fighting, I might have pointed out some of his flaws, and then the games began. Nunu is the creator of my sperm donor, so she is responsible for the majority of my pain and suffering. Nunu is under the impression that her son is completely and utterly perfect (despite having four children with four different women), and that he is an amazing father. So if anyone said a negative word in regards to her precious son, she’s coming for you. And that day, she was out for blood. Unfortunately, mine was in the water.

I got a call from her on the house-phone. This was highly unusual because in my entire life, this was maybe the third time I had spoken to her on a phone. Now again, my memory is shot. Thanks DID! You’re the best. But I do know what the gist was, and I remember some things she said word for word. Some of the things she said are things you will never forget.

Immediately she dove into how her son is perfect, he is an amazing father, and how I should be thankful that I had him in my life. I believe I tried to argue, and that only made her angrier. Here’s where shit went sideways.

“You know what? Did you know that your uncle actually doesn’t love you? Did you know that him and your aunt are actually terrified of you? They are scared of letting you around their children. You’re a little freak. You’re a little fucking freak with the way you dress like a goddamn monster all the time. The only reason they let you see them and spend time with them is because they feel sorry for you and don’t want you to hurt anyone. ”

There are specific moments in your life where pieces of your soul are taken from you. This was one of them. I was just a little insecure emo kid that wanted to be loved and taken care of. This woman had brought my idol into this and told me he despised me. All of my biggest insecurities were sniffed out and exploited, and part of me died that day. My heart dropped through my ass. My body felt things it had never felt before. You know when you hold ice to you skin, and how at first it feels really cold but then eventually it turns to fire? That’s what it felt like. My skin felt like it was being pricked with acupuncture needles, but it wasn’t for healing purposes. I was itchy, I was hot, and I wanted out of my body. I couldn’t think, speak, or breathe. I stopped arguing and tried to think of things that would fill the gaping hole that had just been carved into my chest. And I thought of my cutting supplies upstairs.

Remember, she’s an alcoholic. So she’s hammered. And remember, I do not understand this. I do not understand what alcohol does to people at this point. So to me, everything this woman is saying in regards to me is true. I didn’t understand the concept of lying. How could someone say things that are so cruel just to hurt you? How could someone, especially family, destroy you?

In perhaps what was the first motherly moment she had ever experienced, my mother took the phone from me because she could probably see me falling apart. I immediately emailed my uncle and profusely apologized for existing. I explained that I was so sorry for bothering him, for speaking to him, for breathing air that belonged to him. I apologized for being a freak, for terrifying him, and for being wrong. I told him I would never speak to him again because it’s what he wanted. What I really wanted to say in that email was hey, don’t worry. I’m going to bleed for this. I’m going to hurt for this and that will make it better.

Naturally my uncle was confused as fuck and asked me what the hell was going on. I explained and kept apologizing, but like a motherfucking boss he was like hold please. Wait a minute, I have a phone-call to make. He called his mother (Nunu) and tore her a new asshole. Shortly after that, he emailed again and said hey sweetie, she’s an evil demon and don’t you ever listen to anything that comes out of her mouth again. I remember feeling infinitely better, but skeptical. Where did this woman get these ideas, and were even a shred of them true? I still have my doubts. 10 to 1 odds says I cut hundreds of times that night.

The original personality, Lauren, stopped aging at this age, and she hasn’t really been seen or heard from since. She’s frozen at 14. I wonder why?

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