Have you ever been going along, living life, then out of no where get blindsided by a freight train of sorts that sends you reeling, reaching out, grabbing at anything, and trying to hang on so you can get your bearings in order to regain control, so you can figure out what the hell was that? Why the hell now?? That just happened to me.
I was happily reading the main Face Book page when I came across the picture post of my friend Cindy Baranowski. It was her third grade class at the elementary school we both went to, Diekman School, in Dolton, Illinois. I had to have a look. Cindy had Mrs.Metz, I had Mrs.O'Block. She and I never had the same class but we all knew each other. It was great. I remembered a lot of the names she didn't and gave them to her. Then I noticed there were two more elementary classes of hers in her albums. So I looked at them. Next was sixth grade. She had Mrs. Hudik, the science teacher, I had Mr.Fiegel, the math teacher. Again I filled in the names she had left blank. On to the next. The second grade. I was going through and my eyes came to a screeching halt. Timmy Kilboy. If I live to be 100 I will never forget that name. He made my life miserable in the second grade, just as much as my teacher, Miss Sarlas, did. The little bastard constantly picked on me, teased me, kicked the shit out of me, and always seemed to get away with it. I don't remember any time the kid had to answer for his actions. I must add at this point that at this time my Clinical Depression first reared it's ugly head. So here I am, a little seven year old(god we looked almost like babies), suddenly the world is out of focus from depression, undiagnosed depression mind you, a teacher that has it out for me, and a little twerp of a bastard who wouldn't let up on me. I should also mention that my parents were not into protecting their children. It cost them too much. And what needs they did meet were made as we were made to feel guilty for them having done so. The only thing I remember being told when picked on is, "Ignore him/them." I tried. And if instinct kicked in and I tried to fight back I got it even worse. So it just got to where I would land on the ground after having been knocked down somehow, then I'd curl up as best I could and just take it, hoping it would be over soon. I don't ever remember anyone coming to my rescue, or telling a teacher. I never saw any of my siblings while this was happening on the playground either. I don't remember ever telling a teacher myself. I probably figured that if my own parents didn't do anything to help me, why would they.
Oh God this is killing me to write it. Where in the hell was everybody?? I'm sure with the depression that I'm not remembering it completely correctly. But damnit I know that little bastard should have been stopped. My parents should have considered me more important than themselves. I didn't expect from my memory of Miss Sarlas. The bitch. She's the only teacher I ever had that I didn't get along with and I didn't like. Every other teacher, from kindergarten to college, I liked and got along with wonderfully. So I know the problem was hers, not mine. That woman should have not been allowed to teach children. High School maybe, or college. But not second graders. Especially not impressionable second graders who had no protection. Maybe that's why it seemed she always picked on me. She, like others in my life, knew they would not have to answer for their actions.
When, in the past I thought about that part of my life, I never thought about Timmy Kilboy or Miss Sarlas with positive thoughts, but I never had the knee-jerk reaction I did today. As soon as I saw the little, pint sized twerp and thought about how lucky Cindy was to have Mrs.Lindbloom instead of Miss Sarlas, all the anger that was stored in me bubbled up and boiled over. Or more like it came to a head and popped, oozing oil, liquid and solid, pus, and blood like a huge zit. That's where they were stored, in a giant zit in my memory. Then I squeezed, and squeezed, watching all the germ infested rememberances of them squirt out of me, never to have that kind of reaction from me again. Writing continues to squeeze the pustule and clean it out. Then applies the peroxide, to kill any remaining germs. No, I feel much better. And to show that I haven't let them or any others in my past rot me on the inside I'll concede that for all I know Timmy Kilboy may have gone home to parents that beat the shit out of him everyday. Something made him get pleasure out of torturing me. Although I don't feel it in my heart right now, I do hope he changed from that nasty little boy who was on his way to becoming a troublemaker as an adult. Not just for the world's sake, but his as well. And Miss Sarlas? She was middle aged then and not married. Maybe she needed to get laid. She sure acted like it. Something certainly influenced her behavior. Only I hold her more accountable since she was an adult. If I ever meet her again someday I'm going to ask her "why?" I hope she's changed for the better too. And one more thing, when we are all standing before God on Judgement Day, I'm not going to be standing there, pointing at them saying, "Look what they did to me!!!" That means I'm to a point where I can and do forgive them. I'm no saint, mind you, I do it because it frees me. I'm not bound to forgive them since neither of them has asked for forgiveness. But even then, if you don't do it, it will eat away at your soul. Mine has been hurt enough.
Yes, if you've read my "Hell Is For Children" blog you'd understand that this is another chapter in the book of my life. No, I'm not doing this to say, "Oh poor me." If I did that I'd be just like my parents. I do it because writing has always been a lifesaver. Literally. It's kept me from ending my own life once or twice. I also want it on record. I don't fool myself into thinking any of my tormentors will face justice because of this. No. I'm letting God take care of that. He is much better at it than I am. I'm hoping that maybe someone else will see themselves here and realize they have hope. I fought my way out of a pit of hopelessness and despair, and so can they. I also hope that if one of my loved ones has trouble understanding where I'm coming from, this will help. There is a whole lot about me that I WILL NOT share with anyone, except a minute, trusted, few. If I count them on my hand I still have fingers left over. So don't ask.
I'm not even going to ask God where the hell He was when all of this went on. It seems like He's not there for little ones a lot. But, from what I know of my own relationship with Him, and His nature, He is there. Just because we can't see him in person, or by what action we think He ought to be taking, doesn't mean He's somewhere else. Now I'm not going to go into that "God's ways are not our ways.....blah, blah, blah, blah, blah......" bullshit. For that 's what it is. It's a cop-out. The reality is that I haven't the faintest idea why we don't always see Him when we need to the most. I have no earthly idea. You'll have to take that up with Him. Ask Him yourself. Go ahead. Swallow your pride and do it. I did. I don't always get an answer. But in this life we don't always get what we want, do we? Shit happens. It has since Adam and Eve disobeyed God and ate the fruit that He told them not to eat. When they defied the Almighty, sin entered into the world. When that happened, all that it contained came with it.
What?? You never heard this part of the story? When sin came so did disease, so did suffering, so did pestulance, so did abuse, so did genocide, so did man-eating animals, so did war, murder, rape, arson, serial killers, poverty, etc, and anything else that can make a human being or living creature suffer on this earth; It all came in with sin.
Some people think that God was mean to keep the fruit from Adam and Eve, or to throw them out of the Garden of Eden when they ate it. If these geniuses will look close enough they will find out that if Adam and Eve would have stayed in there, they would have died. They couldn't go back and do it over. They couldn't act a certain way to get rid of the sin that infected them. They couldn't wash it away. There was NOTHING they could do to separate themselves from the sin they brought upon themselves. There was no hope. Then, God actually saved their lives by casting them away. Did you know that? We cannot have sin in us and survive God's presence. It's too perfect. Too powerful. I'm sure there are more appropriate words to explain it but I don't have them. Do you think that was easy for God to do? They were His children. Yet He made them leave His presence. It probably felt like He tore part of Himself off in order to keep them alive. And on top of that, He made them clothes. Look it up. God sewed them clothes to give them some kind of protection since their sin obliterated the protection He had given them in the first place. God could have said, "Go on! Suffer! You deserve what you get!" But our Father didn't do that. And He had the perfect right to, unlike our mortal fathers. That's where Jesus came in. To remove our sin nature. Why not right then during the Book of Genesis? I haven't the faintest clue. Life doesn't always work logically and make sense just because we demand that it does, does it?
Every human has a sin nature, passed down to us from our fathers. (We don't get it from our mothers. This is how a mortal young girl could carry the Son of God. Please don't get mad at me if you believe Mary was sinless. I respect that you do, but I don't. Although I believe her to be a woman worthy of great reverence and respect.) The sin nature. In God's presence it would have killed Adam and Eve, and it would kill us. By kill I mean eternal separation from God(not going to Heaven.) We can't do it ourselves. Being good NEVER got anyone there. It's a lie. The sin in us has to be gone, once and for all. Being good didn't wash it away for Adam and Eve and it won't for us. We can't get rid of it ourselves. That's Jesus' job. But I'm not here to give a sermon, or to challenge other beliefs. I just had to finish the thought.
I'm going off on a tangent here. Here's an answer I got from the Almighty. It took 30 years to get it too. I'm glad I didn't know that ahead of time. I would have been too impatient.
My parents moved us to Texas in 1979 just before my 15th birthday. It was a total, complete, nightmare. I was in a place as different to me as if I had been moved to Oz. I was the outsider. I was the freak. And all the time I was in high school there my brother Sam, sister Mary, and I were never accepted. You'd think we had been born with naturally purple hair. And it wasn't just us. Carswell Air Force Base, and General Dynamics(now Lockheed Martin) were in Fort Worth too. So that meant lots of Air Force Brats and transplants whose parents worked at either place. Not one of us was accepted, ever by the local kids who were raised in White Settlement, Texas. The name says it all, doesn't it? We felt like we all died and went to hell. I had never heard of a 15 year old getting married - with the parent's blessing, before. Of course the girl was pregnant. But where I'm from there was no way in hell a 15 year old was going to be allowed to get married. Pregnant or not. 18 was the youngest I had ever heard of anyone getting married. Yet at Brewer High School in White Settlement, Texas, I knew girls that only went to high school to find a husband. ????? Oz. I wasn't kidding.
For years afterward I pined for my real home. I visited it as much as possible whenever I could. Kept in touch with friends and relatives. When I was 18 I wanted to move back but I didn't have the courage to leave home. I had no confidence or self-esteem by that time. In fact, at that time, due to circumstances out of my control, and due to the lack of protection that was mine, I started to think of myself as lower than the lowest human. I wasn't quite ready to say that I wasn't human, but pretty close. An event took place in my life that all but stripped it away from me, and was verified by my family's failure to protect or defend me. I'm not going into it here. So don't ask.
Fast forward throughout my adulthood, I had started to get psychological help by this time, but more happened, good and bad, life piled up and went on. About 10 years after the event of my 18th year, another huge cataclysm took place that caused such devastation in me that I did, indeed start to consider myself an "it", a "thing", instead of a mortal human being. I begabn to really start abusing myself too. I constantly felt like I needed the shit beat out of me. So I took a belt and beat my legs until they were black and blue. I cut myself. Not enough to need stitches. I didn't want anyone to know I was doing this. Why? I was afraid they would tell me what an idiot I was for doing it. And maybe even tell me I wasn't doing it enough.
Again, I'm not going into it, so don't ask. No, I haven't gone into it.
Once again my family abandoned me, mentally and emotionally, and by doing so refused me medical treatment when I was having a miscarriage. They knew what was happening. Still, I dealt with it all by myself. Alone. I bled profusely for three days until I finally passed the baby. I could barely walk. In fact, I would try to do things that would make me bleed to death and have it done with. I didn't want to live anymore.
When life keeps telling you over and over that you are a doormat and that your job in life is to hold still while everyone wipes their feet on you, you start to believe it. Somehow, some way I went on. I even proved my parents wrong and got married. I even have kids. Thankfully I was diagnosed with Clinical Depression in 1999 and started on a wonder drug called Prozac. My life made a 180 degree turn. In 2004 I started with my current therapist, Alan, and in 2007 my diagnosis was upgraded to Dysthymia - meaning I have two kinds of clinical depression at the same time, and started on two new meds, Cymbalta and Wellbutrin. I've done nothing but improve since then. Last year the walls of my soul fell like Jericho and suddenly I have all this confidence I never had before. It's real. Not a fly-by-night fantasy. I can't tell you what strides I've made. So much dealt with, so much cast away.
Now, for the revelation I got from God, 30 years in the making? Why did He rip me away from my hometown, friends, family, growing confidence, the only place I felt I fit? To get to where I am now, I had to face myself, and my past. I had to see it for what it really was and deal with it. You know how it's written that, "The truth will make you free"? That's true. A big part of all the bullshit in my soul, heart, and mind had to do with family. Not just immediate family either. I'm not badmouthing anyone, but, if I had stayed in Chicago, close to all the crap I came from? I would be dead now. Or at least in a straight jacket in some psychiatric hospital or in a catatonic state somewhere, anywhere, to get away from the hell I lived in. My Dad's family fought, argued, back stabbed, gossiped, cast you out - my siblings and I affectionately call it the, "Vecchio Bullshit Syndrome." On my Mother's side, the Pearsons, they are known for sticking their heads way up their asses and pretending that everything is okay. Even when evil is staring them right in the face. We call this the, "Pearson Denial Mechanism." I'm not going into further detail of either side. Let's just say that I experienced it to the fullest. And if I had continued to live among all this, I shudder to think of what might have happened.
I can think of lots of different ways to have saved me from that crap. But I'm not God. And I do know that my life would have been worse if I had stayed or gone back. I don't have any desire to ask Him "why?" anymore. I am just glad to be where I am. I'm way off the subject I started with, but maybe not. I spent a good part of my life just trying to grab on to anything that was solid enough to stop the forward motion that was making my life out of control. It took all this time to grab ahold, catch my breath, figure out where I was, then right place to go. After several wrong turns, some with dire consequences, I finally made it to the right road. It's taken me all this time to get where I am now; sometimes I feel like I should have been here a long time ago. But I am where I am. More changes are coming up in my life. I'm not sure exactly what they'll be and when they'll happen, but at least I know how to deal with whatever comes my way. And I know who I can turn to when I can't take anymore. Thanks God.