Updated: Jun 3
My mother was a vivacious woman, full of life and vitality.
She died at the tender age of 46 after battling what was eventually diagnosed as Systemic Scleroderma after years of being told there was nothing wrong with her. She outlived my father who had died 18 years previously. She and my father rested separately in their graves for nearly 15 years until my brothers and I finally banned together to move her body next to his.
Early on in her marriage, she and my father started a health and wellness business with his family, that was thriving until he died in a family car accident. We were on our way home from Disney Land when my mother failed to completely swerve around an Elk. Our station wagon flipped end over end multiple times, nearly killing my entire family. We all suffered severe injuries.
After that accident, my mothers world was shattered. She was a shell as she went through the motions attempting to run her business and manage four young and energetic boys. But she did her best to put herself out there and start dating again. Attempting to find someone who could stem the tides and tame the chaos.
Then a mutual friend introduced her to the person who would soon become her husband and my stepfather. Two years after my fathers death. The white knight, on his gallant steed (Mercedes Benz). He had a real fetish with Mercedes after all.
They shared the same loss as they had both been widowed a few short years earlier. He was also a successful entrepreneur. He also had four children. Additionally, they both shared the same religion, Mormonism. Finally, he had an aged wisdom as he was 18 years her senior. So he was probably able to use that to help her feel safe and secure after her trauma, as a father would a child.
He represented himself as her savior and confidant and she was his classically beautiful trophy. As is the case with narcissists, he immediately began to divide and conquer my family. He built my mother up as the primary creator of the health and wellness business that she and my father created with his family, and sued my fathers family for control over the business.
I grew up in my grandparents backyard, playing in the swimming pool. Their home was my sanctuary. Suddenly, for reasons I could not understand, that sanctuary had been defiled. Suddenly, being a Thornock was associated with dishonest and defensive behaviors. If we spent any real time with my grandparents, our behavior was intricately monitored afterward for any negative impact that they may have had on us.
For those of you who are familiar with a narcissists story, it won't be hard for you to fill in the holes of this story. The love bombing that must have occurred at the beginning of the relationship. Telling her how beautiful and capable she was, and how my fathers family was taking advantage of her. How she was doing all the work, and how she shouldn't let them do that to her. Which is ironic given that later my stepsister would describe her as a suck that was actually killing my stepfather with her selfish neediness.
I was too young at the time to see any of this first hand really, as I was only six or seven years old. But it isn't hard for me to piece together now what happened back then, now that I fully understand the patterns and behaviors of a narcissist.
My beautiful mother was my stepfathers prize that he was determined to win. He enjoyed telling us stories of winning his girlfriends from other men. His first wife for example was engaged to be married when he started dating her. A sweet lady from everything that I could see, who unfortunately died a slow and painful death from cancer. Very similar to how my mother died in fact. Perhaps she sustained the same treatment that caused her body to prematurely age and die.
My mother told others at the beginning of their relationship how much like my father this new man was. Indicating to me that he learned what she wanted and gave it to her, just long enough to suck her into his honey trap. Mirroring her moves, making her believe that he was in fact everything that she needed and wanted.
My mother's mother was also turned into the bad guy as well. Slowly but surely, he managed to poison my mother against the people around her that loved her most. Leaving her ultimately reliant upon him and his mercy as she intensely struggled to maintain her health and sanity.