Some of you may know that for the first three years of Gavin’s life, I was his primary care giver. Never have I hit Gavin. I don’t believe in hitting as a form of discipline. I couldn’t imagine inflicting that mental and physical distress on a child.
Now, he has fun, three days a week at daycare and is enrolled for Pre-K. However! Every morning I keep him 🙂 I play with him, I read to him and I make his breakfast. I ask him, “Gavin, what would you like for breakfast?” Lately his reply has been, “I’d like an english-muffin with peanut butter and chocolate, big-big strawberries, raspberries, apple juice, and a water. Paleaseeeee.” I drink coffee while preparing his breakfast and watch as my little Gavin plays with his dinosaurs or sea creatures. Or, a puzzle. Or anything. I love spending this time with him. When I was his age, I had no father. I made it very clear to myself and anyone listening that I was determined to be there for Gavin. Always. To be his primary care giver for the first three years of his life was a blessing.
And now, when I pick him up from daycare (we call it school because it’s much like a school) he smiles SOO big and yells, “That’s my Dad!” And man…..man does that feel good. It’s simple. I’m here to be a loving, supportive, husband and father. Writing is a bonus that I am ragingly thankful for.
Often I think of children who have been tortured, abused, and manipulated. I was that child. I broke the cycle. We all can break the cycle, if we are aware and want to. Mental illness is a subject I take very seriously. I believe that we, as humanity, have barely begun to truly understand how deep, or to understand how many levels concerning mental illness there are. I believe there are forms of mental illness that have evolved our human race. I also believe there are forms that are evil. I think it’s important for the broken children who have been abused to understand they are not the evil ones.
She wore her yellow rain jacket with her blue rain boots. She didn’t mind the rain, but her mother would yell at her if she got her clothes too wet. The brook’s banking was muddy and she liked it because she was able to leave impressions with her boots and watch as the rain disturbed her footprints. ‘Maybe I should have been a duck.’ Earlier the young girl had observed a mother duck with her ducklings and watched in awe at how the mother duck quacked and nuzzled her young. When the mother duck started toward the water the ducklings followed. She had felt a sensation brighten within her chest that she’d not felt before. Now though, it was just her and her emptiness watching rain destroy where she’d created another version of self within a few muddy prints. ‘I don’t understand why it’s my fault that I’m hit.’ She leaned against an oak tree and forced the feeling to cry back down her throat. ‘I want to like life, but I don’t know how to make her happy.’
The tree embraced the young girl and said, ‘To decipher manipulation is much like killing yourself slowly and ignoring your knowledge of it. Such is the case when we place a narcissist’s needs into a space of importance. Recently it was demanded of you, by you, to acknowledge what you know to be truth. Soon, it will be time to act, and when you do, this unjust weight will be lifted from you. In time you will have your own ducklings and you will feel your chest brighten to the depths of the heavens. There will be no pity. There will be no, “I’m sorry.” There will only be what you’ve created and you will be loved.’
She trampled and ran along feeling tall ferns; green and narrow at the tops, sending her palms into realization of being. She smiled as she ran. Her mother asked that she not run to the brook, but that’s where she was going and where she was now. “Go on little thought and be what you were before.” She said to the babbling water. A frog hopped near and asked, “What was it, it was not now, before?” She picked a yellow flower, placed it near the frog to enjoy, turned and said her hello while walking away.
Do the stairs crack well? Do they listen? Do they see? The floor lifts and eyes are there. Again. The steam rises. Do we yet understand? The steam rises and the child hurts. Press with your eyes upon the floor and watch as the child sinks to the bottom of the shower, searching for them. When the child understand nothing of self.
We weren’t asleep. The disgusting face was once again in our ear. The box was heavy and dark over our heads. Ask one more time to see. We bite through our mind’s fluid darkness to find another- alone and alone always here. It is better than being in the box with the heaviness and the darkness with the question to always see.
Do we not remember? A girl held a flower.
She had just picked it. It was yellow, blue, and red.
A boy asked, ‘Why did you pluck the flower?’
The girl replied, ‘Because it spoke to me.’
The boy stated, ‘It’s not possible for a flower to speak.’
She told him, ‘It is when you listen.’