I was out of the Ward family and that was that. When I eventually reconnected with my father a couple of years later, it was never even brought up. It was just known. I was out. The only time I have ever seen another Ward family member was my Uncle David at my father’s house around Christmas Time 1993. I didn’t celebrate Christmas and they all knew that, so my dad invited me to a pre-Christmas dinner at his house. I was poor as hell and hungry so I showed up and guess what? It was full of my step-mother Carol’s relatives and it was a party! I have bad social anxiety, and that was the last thing I wanted to see. But just then, my Uncle David showed up and he actually seemed happy to see me! He was the only one that spoke to me that terrible Christmas so long ago. He said “Keep your chin up.” That little piece of positivity gave me the strength to get through the whole ordeal. I wanted to talk to him, but I was already on my way out. I never saw him again. I tried to get a hold of him over the years, but couldn’t find him. About 8 years ago I found a page he had made on facebook, but there was no pictures or info, so I can’t really say if it was him or not. I heard his wife died through my sister (that is another story for another time) but other than that I have zero info. I just want those people to know that I made something of myself. That I didn’t let mental illness run my life into the ground. I just want them to know that I am loved and they can go fuck themselves because I made my own family.