I dressed you up as a CHILD!At nine the following morning I was awakened by a call from my mother.
“Dianne, your sister in law called me” she started “I am sure you know why”
She waited for my response, but I was exhausted emotionally. This did not deter her. She felt I needed help, No, not help, but threats. She had told Jackie to have me committed.
“What are you talking about mom?” My voice was devoid of emotion.
“Dianne, you can’t be Gay, I dressed you up as a child”.
Two millennia of an evolving humanity and that’s the best you could come up with?
"And my lover so appreciates that mom" I wanted to say.
But if I did, my mother would certainly catch the first plane to Texas to slap me. Even if it meant hiring a private aircraft. And that was the common sense that was my mother. I would soon find out my father-in-law had the same distorted conception of the issue.
An hour or so later, I hung up the phone, hardly remembering one word as I stared at the ceiling for hours at a time. There were no cell phones, phone communication was not private and one was constrained by location. But still, where was Debra? Later that morning the phone rang.
“Dianne?” Finally, it was Debra. I’d been crying.I choked back tears as I listened.
She told me of the previous night, the surprise Cynthia and Sabrina laid on Anna.
She told me that she needed to be with me.
She questioned Jackie’s every move.
She was divided.
“Dianne, I promise you, this is going to be over and we can be together.”
Like a pusher, she had me hooked. My entire life, never had I been treated like I was worth anything. I soon started to believe I was not. From a small child, as far back as I could remember, same old tune.
Giving up, giving out, giving in or getting down. It was all the same. I was persecuted by my brothers with very little interception from my folks.
I was not an attractive child, my mother told me she was so disappointed since they wanted a girl so badly and I was such an ugly baby. My brothers let me know in a constant mantra of “Dumbo” (for my big ears) Dumbo (for my big nose) and constant snickering at “what a big ass I had”.
I had no reprieve from this torture. I was made great sport much the same way in school. My brothers, only 3 and 4 years older than I paved the road so upon entering first grade, I was set-up for certain social failure.
There are people in this life that no matter what they do, no matter whom they hurt, they always breeze through life on the enviable cloud nine. We, who never experience this, watch and are constantly amazed. These social monsters create situations to make their cause more popular and invalidate the most innocuous dialogue their victim engages. Silencing their quarry at any cost..
Then there are others that strive to make everyone happy, accepting much less, finding themselves "kicked to the curb". What they haven't done to themselves, others do to them. You know these slighted individuals. That one person in the family everyone pokes at, laughs at. That poor pathetic soul you went to school with that just couldn’t quite keep pace.
That was me. And I too, handed down this pillaging to others, because, as they say, someone always works for someone else, well the same goes the other way. There will always be someone who is lower on the food chain than you. So the beleaguered target them just to make themself feel better.
I have discovered, in the end, insitgators of emotional torment usually spend their lives not realizing their goals and wishing things were different.
I swore my children would never be in that position. Especially my “girl child”. She was not going to be dressed according to my standards being ridiculed for being out of place. She was not going to be threatened on her way to and from school. She was going to be the bully. And shame on me, but that is exactly what I created. I told her she was going to be something important. Something special.
And she is. Too important, and too special for me. I do not regret allowing her to have a wonderful high school life, because mine was not. My child would not have her heart racing as she headed home, worrying about what was waiting for her. She would be able to concentrate on her last class of the day, instead of being distracted by a certain inevitability. I knew once I got home from school, something would be waiting for me there as well. My mother standing around a corner ready to slap me as I made my way to my bedroom. Punished for trivalities that went with the times, rolling up my skirt, stuffing my bra. She looked and found something. It took me years as an adult to not flinch from the casual hand being raised before me. When my brothers got home, the torture continued. All I had was my baby sister, 10 years my junior, that I held like my own child as I cried myself to sleep.
Of course, these are all lies. That is their response. Not an apology, not trying to make good the bad from so many years before. No, they continue to think about themselves and the only way they can convince others of their innocence in the damaging of another is to make certain no one believes that person. And continue this deplorable behavior even today. This could all go away with that one simple gesture and we could all go on with our lives. But the truth is so much easier because it requires no rehearsal, and is consistent in the telling through the years. The truth has witnesses.In life, I have found one thing to stay true. Liars are the first to say “liar”. If you are the person who so many confide in, and for some reason, that has been my lot in life, you can guarantee you will have the title “liar”. Because should you decide to reveal these truths, it would not be to their advantage for you to have integrity. You may tell of their exploits with their cousin’s husband, their co-worker who is married that they slept with and was so afraid that child they were carrying was his. These folks have long term, and in some cases, short term memory issues. Some people believe they can save their soul from the devil , by selling yours. As if Lucifer and the Almighty will never know the difference.
"Memory is a complicated thing, a relative to truth, but not its twin. Pain reaches the heart with electrical speed, but truth moves to the heart as slowly as a glacier." Barbara Kingsolver You see folks, when someone says, “I never told anyone this…” Ask them “Then why are you telling me?””In Antartica, penguins wait for the spring to mate on dry land, when the ice melts. Since they are surrounded by water, they have to ride these huge waves to make it to the cliff ledges. There are thousands. But there are only so many spots, so some of them just get tired and drown. The walruses wait below on the bottom of the rocks for this to happen so they can consume them. I am like one of those unfortunate penguins.
I can’t take one breath in the present without choking on the past. I should take umbrage but I find resentment is taking poison and hoping the other guy dies. If love were pure, these people would be dead.
Then fate created Debra.
I was too accustomed to being treated like a princess. Debra had spent the last many weeks catering to my every wish. And it was lovely. I felt special. She told me I was deserving and for once, I believed it. It showed in my demeanor and my physical self. I had gained weight thru the years, but in the last month, I started loosing it. Yes, I know, affairs tend to do that. But I smiled so much more, laughed so much more. Cried so much less. Until lately.She seemed to always have a solution for any of the problems we encountered. However, this time, no one could mend this. She felt Anna was going to give up on this and Debra could start her life with me.
And then the worst news...
Anna had told her family.
My heart broke all over again, for this was a disapointment I had hoped to never realize.....