I…uh, forgot that my kids might read this one day; or my grandkids; if they ever meet me, that is.
So, I decided I’d better keep this clean, just a tad, I reckon.
Resolution 1: Revelations
Let the battle for my immortal soul begin…
Let’s say that as far back as you can remember that you have always known, or been told, about God the Father, Jesus the Son and the Holy Ghost as far as a Christian upbringing is concerned.
Let’s say that in your family’s house there were 4 forms of entertainment.
1) A complete set of Encyclopedia Britannica, weighing 50 lbs per book and smelled great!
2) 3 Channels on a black and white console TV whose screen resembled an agitated snowglobe.
3) A huge Holy Bible, full of classic art portrayals of significant Christian history; or so they say.
4) Tormenting your younger siblings
Let’s say that you are an artistic child who is being raped every other day by neighbor boys and your Dad is never home to protect you because work keeps him away for months at a time.
And when he is home, he’s always angry….
Let’s also say that these neighbor boys also like to “experiment” on you and “do” things to you besides make you suck their [censored].
Now, let’s say that you are extremely immature for your already young age and are way too trusting, terribly naïve to deceit, treacherous thoughts and are starved for attention from anyone that would smile at you….or acknowledge your existence.
So….you do things to make people like you, to notice you….to not hit you all of the time or call you “dummy” or “stupid”
Let’s say that you’d do anything…. The one thing that you do a lot is look at the pictures in the encyclopedias and the big Bible.
The pictures in the encyclopedia have articles explaining them but, remember….You’re too young to understand the big words.
But, the pictures in the Bible….
Glorious…so beautiful; half naked men and women….Angels fighting….A big finger writing on a wall….a man walking on water in a storm….lots of fish and bread…people with golden rings over their heads making the peace sign……and a guy bleeding on a cross with nails in his hands and blood everywhere!
He even had thorns on his head!
Okay, let’s say that with you being this abnormally sensitive and artistic child, these pictures touch a part of you that nothing else ever has; where creativity and expression live.
Let’s also say that these pictures are explained to you by your bible scholar grandmother that tells you the men who painted the naked pictures of angels are bad, and “what were they thinking?”and that the guy on the cross died because I was a sinner and that if he wasn’t my friend I would burn forever in a place called Hell.
Like I said earlier….I wanted friends in the worst possible way….
I wanted the cross man to be my friend.
I didn’t want to be a sinner and burn in the place called Hell.
Would he make me touch his [censored], too?
Granny told me about the Devil.
He loved to burn bad little boys and girls in Hell fire and brimstone.
Mom and Dad said I was a bad boy. A stupid boy.
Granny said that all little boys and girls are bad sometimes and if we didn’t know Jesus, the Devil would get us.
I didn’t know Jesus.
I knew I was bad.
I was gonna burn forever.
Granny took me to church where a man with a fat, red face shouted and cried about Jesus. He told us that we were all going to hell in a hay basket.
The other big people yelled “AMEN!” They sang, danced, shouted, cried, fell on the floor and drank beer by the graveyard when church let out.
I looked under my bed for the Devil.
I kept my closet door open.
I was a stupid, bad boy that was gonna burn forever.
Granny taught me how to pray and how to ask Jesus to forgive me.
I couldn’t remember doing anything wrong but, I prayed anyway; just in case the Devil was watching.
Let’s say that this is about the time you begin to draw pictures.
Lots and lots of pictures…
The main theme of these pictures? The man on the cross…..
Drawn from every possible visual angle that a child’s mind can imagine.
Looking down on the cross, from below, from either side, from an adjacent hill, from the perspective of each similarly crucified criminal….
I mean, pages and pages of this scene!
I was obsessed with the man on the cross.
This is also the time when your family start telling you that you “are such a good drawer” that “you are really talented” (whatever that meant) But they were smiling when they said it so it makes you happy and proud.
So…drawing Jesus made me good, huh?
I might not burn after all.
But Jesus didn’t keep the neighbor boys from holding me down and “doing things”.
I asked Jesus to stop them but, he never did.
Probably busy….I mean, I wasn’t the only one with troubles, right?
I didn’t tell anyone because they would say I was bad and I knew what would happen then.
Plus, those boys said they’d kill me and my dog.
I was 7 years old when I found out about Jesus, the Devil and rape.
I didn’t actually know it was called rape, then.
All I knew is that when I couldn’t run fast enough or hide well enough; those boys would hurt me again.
I never told Granny because she might tell the preacher and he would tell Jesus.
I wasn’t aware yet that Jesus could already see everything.
I learned that at vacation bible school when I was 8.
I hoped he’d see what those boys were doing to me and tell the Devil to get them.
But, he never did.
Because they didn’t stop “experimenting on me” until I got big enough to fight back and didn’t care if they killed me or my dog.
How could Jesus see a bad thing and not stop it?
I mean, he chased those money lenders out of the temple with a whip! I saw it in the picture bible!
Granny had a picture in her house of Jesus painted on a piece of wood.
His heart had a flaming crown on it and it was bleeding.
His eyes followed you everywhere.
I used to try and sneak up on the picture of staring Jesus but, he always saw me first.
I asked my Granny about this… “Jesus is always watching you” she said. “He loves you”
I didn’t know much about love then but, I knew a mean look when I saw one.
I was a stupid, bad boy, I knew about mean things.
This is about the time I started crucifying little animals; like: frogs, rats, fish, squirrels… .
This is also about the same period that I got baptized; for the first time.
Very conflicted up little boy…
I wanted Jesus to be my friend but, I also wanted to hurt something….anything.
Note: I don’t know exactly why I am revealing this on my blog.
I guess I’m thinking that since crazy meds never worked on me and that telling doctors about it was kinda surreal, you know, like it was someone else that all that had happened to.
Thank God, for gradual memory loss….
You think really deeply and explore parts of your soul when you write, so I write.
Things that can’t be spoken of out loud but, when I write about it; put it on paper….it helps.
The writing of these memories aren’t painful, they’re just memories.
I’m restating that the main objective of my blog, when I started it, was for this very reason.
To find myself.
To save the little boy.
To tell him that it wasn’t his fault.
To tell him that he isn’t stupid or bad.
Also to remind myself that I am a product of other flawed and tortured people that probably didn’t know or realize what damage they were doing to the little person.
It’s all they knew, too.
Maybe if I forgive them, they won’t burn in hell as long.
I guess we’re all a bit, scarred and fragile; a tad, imbittered.
Who am I to say “poor pitiful me” that I am the only man on this earth with a rough childhood?
But, it happened to me and I suffered in myself and spread it to others.
I thought it was pretty bad until I “grew up” and noticed that I’m not the only person on this earth.
Hmmm…. I just realized something….forgiveness removes poison from a soul, not the stains.
I love Jesus but, I’m still afraid of the dark.
What does that mean?
I guess I’ll keep writing….hopefully, I will find….something
The Devil may be watching.
Stay close dear friends and readers…..
I can’t believe I’m 51 years old and still dealing with issues from my childhood.
Man, those people screwed me up.
Writer… Heal thyself.
3 thoughts on “Gracious, Me….”
I don’t really know what to say, Trey. Religious extremism of every kind has screwed up more minds than anything else, I guess. And those boys were, I don’t know. It makes for a lot of hurt. Writers maybe do heal themselves. Or help a lot of other people be healed in their writing. Maybe both. Hopefully, both.
Letting it all out helps you and others who have endured humiliation and torture by people. It is hard to forgive,but it costs a lot more to allow them to rent space in your head. At age 51, you could have another forty years to live without the baggage of these memories. It’s never too late to start anew.
We have begun! Hope you’re doing well!!