This is a subject of a more serious nature. It has to do with my emotions, or lack of emotion on a subject. My mother’s best friend Edna has stage 4 lung cancer, and is going to be passing on. I feel numb, with out emotion at all toward this subject. Growing up, our family was very close to theirs. She was like a second mom to me. Having little or no emotion causes me to feel bad and closed off from her.
My dear mom is very upset, and is having difficulty dealing with the change in life. I am doing my best to be supportive, and say things that will make her feel better, however I find myself feeling numb. I realize why I am feeling the way I do. I am hoping a bit of writing will help me process and share what is going on. I’ll have to share a bit of a back story. So, please bear with me as I fill in some details.
I am not entirely sure how old I was, but I will say young. Around kindergarten, first grade time frame of my life. My mom would have her best friend Edna’s boys’ watch us when they would go out. The boys’ names are Kenny and Alan. At any rate, I remember when they watched us we would play hide and go seek. We were paired up, and Kenny was always my partner. He and I hid in my parents’ closet. While we were waiting to be found, he pulled out his penis and made me stroke it. I remember my cheeks burning with embarrassment and I felt scared and forced to do something I didn’t want to do.
When I told my parents about it, I remember getting in trouble for telling stories. I have always been an emotional person, and my mother thought I was not telling the truth and being dramatic. (I would cry when I told her about what was happening, why a kid would make something like that up is beyond me.) I continued speaking out, and they continued punishing me. Telling me what I was saying was not true. Oh denial is not bliss! It was not until my brother stepped in to advert a spanking for my tails, to defend me, and say my story was true, that I stopped getting into trouble. I was to young to know what went on, but I knew the boys’ didn’t watch us anymore from that time on.
My folks handled the situation in the poorest of ways, they did nothing. Well, that is not exactly true, the boys never baby sat again, and my mother gave Kenny a tongue lashing, and told him she was keeping her eye on him.
There are several issues that stemmed from this. My protectors did little to keep me safe. Our families where very close, we spent large amounts of time together, and that did not change. Mom and dad decided to not say anything. Our families where so close and by bring up what happened it would surely change the relationships between the two. My father thought I wouldn’t remember, as I was a young girl when this happened. Little did they know, it broke something inside of me and changed me for my life to come.
Okay, so this really has little to do with Edna, and she has been a great friend to my mother and has always shown us love. When I talk to my mom and she brings up the subject, I don’t have any feelings. When my mother cries and struggles for words, I set there blankly not feeling anything. Right now my mother has been traveling back in forth from her house to Edna’s caring for her. Helping her do what needs to be done. She is a dying woman with little strength or stamina left.
The only time I feel anything is when she brings up Kenny’s name. Then I feel anger and I want to say so much. Mostly I want to say don’t utter his name to me. I realize my parents are wrong, and we do not see eye to eye on what happened when I was a child or how they choose to deal with the fall out. I can not change them, or even get them to see my point of view. That fact I have accepted, and feel at peace about. What is hard for me is to listen to her talk about “him” to me. Have some tact and respect. She has a totally different perspective of what happened. I get that, but she knows how I feel about the subject. The only reason I am cutting her slack and not saying how I feel is to let her feel sadness and grief with out shutting the door to her.
I know I will not be attending Edna’s funeral. I can’t trust myself to be respectful and honor her life. You know the saying …. “There is a time and place for everything.” I truly feel like if I would see Kenny, I would go up to him and speak my mind. Right there at the funeral. Oh wouldn’t that be nice. Me in all my grownupness and Kenny, talking about how he use to abuse me. What a shock to his wife and kids. My mother would be so happy!
I have thought about finding him over the years, just to say what I wanted to say, but I had chosen to remain silent. Now I know where he lives, I suppose I will have to decide if I want to write him a letter or call him. At any rate, talking to my mom about this has let me know although I have come a long way from where out of the woods emotionally on this subject.
I realize it is not Edna’s fault, why am I blocked emotionally when it comes to grief? I do know this, while I have been typing this out, the foodie in me has emerged. I went and bought a scrambled egg. Food is still my solace……at least I am choosing better even if I have chosen to eat my emotions. Baby steps, and progress not perfection. Right?! A scrambled egg is better than a pumpkin pie….a whole pumpkin pie.