Childhood Pain

If you are adult who was abused as a child, you are not alone.

Baked ears! Burnt neck! Big watery eyes! Monkey feet! Big ashy lips! Crusty hands! Dry flakey knees! You can't do anything right!
When you were three, she said, I wish I had five of you. When you were a baby, I had to thump the bottom of your feet to wake you for your feedings.
Parnet yelling at child

At age three I was hospitalized for two months. The doctors were trying to find out the cause of my skin disorder. They called it eczema. Dad grew impatient. Finally, he stormed the hospital and took me out against the doctor's orders. He didn't even remove the gauze that mummified my body from neck to toe. My mother began insulting me when I arrived home. I was no longer the cute baby, the cute three year old--no, now I had marks on my skin that made me ugly and imperfect in her eyes. For ten years I listened to her insults towards me.

Three days ago My son decided to get my mother to acknowledge the harm she had done towards me, her horrible deeds. She took the that was a long time ago, I don't remember, life is too short route. I had tried to discuss my hurt several times at the suggestion of my therapist. That was in 1987. She was fifty-one then, and her response was the same as the one she offered three days ago. Something tipped my hand this time. I became very agitated. I felt boxed in. I found I could not control my thoughts. I wanted to pinch me off this planet. The world became chocolate coconut icing cake. I watched a big hand pinch a coconut fiber. It would be missed, but that did not alter the cakes taste or texture. I wanted to take my life. Swirls of smoking feeling enveloped me--sadness, rage, a laughter of insanity, loneliness all merged into one word: silence. I repeated the word silence over and over until a calmness came into my veins. I began to understand the incomprehensible. I accused myself of being extremely reckless. I knew better: if you are allergic to shellfish, why allow shellfish into your diet?

Two days later I learned individuals who have been bullied extensively suffer from a deep depression and uncontrollable rage. I found myself with a great onset of depression and rage. I was a mixture of tears and violence. My new assignment in life? I had to stay away from her forever. My struggle understanding the mess she made of me and the path she set me on needed to be cleaned with yellow dishwashing gloves.

I had a lot of mess to clean up.

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Source Code by Michael H. Brownstein, Andrew Patchell, and Areon Nozinor. Edited by Jordan Perry, Hosea Franklin