A LIFE LIVED---AS INSTRUCTED.
Growing up, my fear entrapped me, much like being physically- restrained. If I had drawn a picture of my situation, it would have shown a Monster placing a young child in a tiny cage, locking the door, then-- hanging the cell key on a chain-- around the Monster's neck.
"While traveling the Great Wall of China in 1990, I was routinely diverted from my adventure--- to search for water. One such search took me on a journey—far- back in time. I entered a small village and, to my surprise, saw a group of older Chinese people dressed in vintage- government uniforms, wearing government-issued canvas shoes, topped by tattered Mao jackets. Their homes were primitive mud huts arranged in a circle and, in the center of the circle, stood a large, open fire for heat and community cooking. I watched approximately twenty Chinese-- all extremely-thin-- exercise together as a recorded-voice barked instructions over a loud speaker.
This centuries-old village, locked in a distant past, was home to a small population of older Chinese who lived each day by following recorded instructions from unseen leaders. I watched as the expressionless villagers moved like robots--in silence--while performing simple chores. Mounted on a tall wooden pole in the middle of the town's center, an ancient-looking loud speaker blasted scratchy recordings of long-dead leaders. The recordings-- decades-old—continuously repeated passages from Mao’s --LITTLE RED BOOK.
No one noticed me; no one looked my way as I opened my sleeping bag near the community fire. Tired, always tired, I barely remember lying down on that chilly evening-- before sleep arrived. It was completely dark when I was awakened by another long-ago recording---with the same authoritative voice--ordering everyone to leave their beds and unite in exercise.
I watched as the villagers gathered in the courtyard, in the dark, and began exercising to patriotic music from Mao’s long-ago glory years. It was horrifying to watch human beings--like well-trained dogs-- perform-on-command. Clearly, these much-older Chinese had been trained--from birth.
I so-easily identified with the complete obedience of these villagers. From actual experience---I well- understood the results of childhood conditioning----because:
“Absolute Obedience was a requirement at our house. Since early childhood, my mother trained me to fear her and-- like a caged animal with the cage door-- open-- I knew better than to "run away." My master “collared” me at birth and forced me to live on a very short leash. In my book, "THE BEAUTY QUEEN"-- I explain--in detail-- how my mother sexually molested me from childhood but-- it was never about sex. She used sex as her weapon of control; her weapon of power.
Reading about my mother and her evil control--about my years of sexual abuse-- must be difficult for those who never experienced abuse, most particularly, sexual abuse. No doubt, many readers are shocked--while others may be skeptical. Despite what anyone believes, life has never been easy for me. Rather, my life has been an ongoing-marathon of serious challenges.
As a little girl, I practiced play-acting. I taught myself to be positive, hopeful, outgoing and pleasant, while carefully- hiding the dirtiest of secrets. I learned at an early age to be a good actress. I never wanted anyone to feel sorry for me.
I was so ashamed yet so deathly-afraid of my mother--I could never share my nasty secret with anyone. SO, I survived by living my life as two different people. I was the public Sally with monumental goals and endless possibilities while the “other” Sally was the little girl in me—the “forever” child. She was the long-time keeper of THE SECRET which allowed the Public Sally to break-free of the past.
I’ve been treated, by some, as if—I've lived the perfect life. For years, too-many-assumed I was the typical self-centered, overly-confident-- Prima Donna-- with money, fame, and everything going—my way. Sure, I know quite-well about being judged on my appearance but--- I also know—all-too-well---about Loss, Hurt, Cruelty, Abuse, Lies, Deception, Evil, and---Ugly People with Ugly Actions--- because--- I’ve lived a complicated yet incredible life as: SALLY MILLER, THE BEAUTY QUEEN."