Tag Archives: murder

The lost children

I awoke this afternoon to news of a terrorist attack during the Boston Marathon, this country’s premier track event. Runners from across the globe come to Boston with the hope of just finishing the race, forget about winning. The elite of the elite of course, dream of taking home the grand prize, usually to another country.

I went about my daily chores with MSNBC in the background providing audio coverage I could hear in the kitchen and video coverage I could see when I sat down to eat. (Yes, I am actually eating. I’m just sort of forcing myself.) The attack itself is tragic, but hearing that an eight-year-old little boy lost his life is just devastating. As Rachel Maddow is now reporting, there are several other children with very serious injuries, some of whom may well lose one or two limbs.

Man comforting victim of Boston Marathon bombing

Man comforting bombing victim. Photo by John Tlumacki/The Boston Globe via Getty Images,

I have wanted to have children since I was a child. I got pregnant while in undergrad, but lost the child almost as soon as I found out s/he was inside of me. Actually, that’s not quite accurate. I knew that I was pregnant even before I went to see a doctor. When the requisite blood work was done, the hormone indicating pregnancy was higher than it would be if I weren’t pregnant, but not high enough to signal a viable pregnancy. Sure enough, within hours, my baby was gone. The child was Glenn’s. I think I’ve told this story here before. If I have, forgive the duplication.

My point is that I can imagine what the parents of the injured children are going through. It is a pain like no other. There is little to do except sit with your child; hold his/her hand; pray to whatever higher power there may or may not be, and; will the child’s body to heal. In other words, parents are totally helpless. It’s up to the nurses, doctors and the child’s physical and metaphysical strength to determine the outcome. For at least one set of parents, the outcome was as bad as it gets.

I have never had a living, breathing child born after being carried inside of me for nine months. My baby . . . our baby . . . never drew a breath. I never felt the flutter of him or her moving nor having his or her head pressing against my bladder and having to run to the restroom. I didn’t have the privilege of choosing furniture for a nursery that I’ve painted, or had painted, in a beautiful sky blue and yellow. Nor could I pick out onesies in preparation for bringing him or her home from the hospital. The only thing I had was the blood of losing our baby. Even then, there were few signs I’d actually miscarried.

My body gave hints of carrying someone else inside of it. Just hints, but pretty significant ones. Nevertheless, I knew. I was so afraid because I was so young. I worried that my parents and other relatives would be disappointed in me. Our family, until relatively recently, didn’t have unwed mothers. Even now, the only unwed mothers come from one branch of the family tree. I was considering in vitro or simply buying the “genetic material” from a clinic in San Francisco I’d scouted some years ago, but had to drop all plans when I learned I needed a second operation on my spine. As afraid as I was when I got knocked up in undergrad, and as terrified as I was at the thought of Glenn’s reaction, I had every intention of keeping our baby even if it meant s/he became MY baby. I am very much in favor of choice, but I wanted that child. If I wanted him/her so badly, why did I feel relieved when I miscarried? I wish I could answer that question, but I can’t because I don’t know.

What I do know is that I can feel the terror of those parents anxiously awaiting good news from doctors in charge of their children’s cases. I feel the longing and the empty space in the lives of the parents and loved ones of the little boy who was killed. I feel the rage caused by some maniac with no regard for life and willing to kill people who’d done nothing but stand on the sidelines of a race to cheer the runners on. How much more basic a scene can there be? But that’s one of the reasons why the bomber chose this particular target. Twenty-six miles is a long route to secure. Inevitably, there will be holes in that security. The bomber found at least two and probably three. One of those holes was near a little eight-year-old boy who will never see the inside of his bedroom again; will never be held in his mother’s arms again; will never learn to drive; never get grounded for staying out too late; never go off to college; never find his first love; never get married, and; never have children of his own. The bomber didn’t just kill one little boy for whatever cause he was protesting. He killed a family’s dreams for their child and halted a branch of their family tree as if with a chainsaw.

It took me over 20 years to grieve the loss of the child I would have had. Glenn just learned about it last week, not that he particularly gives a damn, but he had a right to know because I never told him even after we’d both graduated, carried on a long distance relationship, his marriage, continuing to see each other from time to time and then the forever break-up. We were similar to the movie Same Time Next Year for a while, only we did manage to get in a couple of times a year. Anyway, as I said, he doesn’t care, which is kind of what I expected. I care. I care because that baby was inside of me if even for a little while. I care because I never had a chance to know him or her as they grew up. I care because I didn’t have the honor of sitting next to a hospital bed holding his or her hand when s/he was sick nor worrying nor feeling jubilant when s/he got better. I wanted all of those moments, good, bad and horrible. But for whatever reason, I will probably never get the chance. My branch of the family tree will end with me.

What happened today is horrific. That the bomber killed at least one child makes it more so. For all we know, that kid could have invented a truly clean energy source when he grew up. Maybe he’d be the next Steve Jobs or the next Stephen Hawking. The future was his to grab and hold onto as tightly as possible. Now, the only thing he’ll have is a funeral and, perhaps, a grave. His parents will have holes in their hearts that nothing and no one will ever fill. They will cry for the rest of their lives as something or someone reminds them of the little boy they lost. That’s the part I do know. I don’t know it in the same way, but I know it nonetheless. I can think of nothing more sad than the wailing of a mother for the baby she lost and can never replace. May the spirits of the little boy killed this afternoon and the spirit of the child I lost both find new homes where they can be happy, loved and carefree as long as possible. In other words, a place where they get to live through their childhoods and, like other children, grow into adulthood and families of their own. Peace be with you little ones. Peace be with you.

Trippin’

There are days when life seems like someone’s dream. I understand Australian aboriginal societies view dreams as valid as anything they may experience while awake. That might explain why sleep is no respite. I’m angry with myself for having sex with a guy old enough to be my father, (not that that’s bothered me before, but I was younger then), and; for eating things I know are not good for me, although I have honestly tried to get better. I went from not eating for days until I felt so faint I could no longer walk to eating all of the things I know have a zillion calories and feeling like a pig who’s as big as a house. I keep asking myself and God, “When will this end?!” I can accept hurting myself by cutting or something, but I can’t accept myself if I eat, especially when I already feel horrible about my weight. There are days when I want to hide. In fact, for over a year, that’s exactly what I did. I hid. I’d only leave the house for doctors’ appointments. Even then, I hid myself under baggy clothing because I wanted so badly to be invisible.

Looking at the above as a complete outsider, I’d say that this chick needs some help. Yep, she does. She’s a hot mess. My therapist can only see me a couple of times a month because she doesn’t work full time. I don’t want to break in a new therapist, so I’m sticking with this one. Besides, she’s really good. I asked her if she treated people with eating disorders as we were walking to the door. She said that she didn’t treat eating disorders specifically, but has run into them in the course of treating other disorders. It’s essentially the same thing she said about another pathology with which I have to deal more and more often.

People don’t understand that cutting is not about attempting suicide at all. It’s the exact opposite. By cutting, the person can release some of the anger, pressure, stress that’s going on inside so that they can function. Another reason is that cutting or, in my case, burning, is the only way to express the intense pain felt. I burned myself nearly to the bone about a decade ago because I was dying inside. I wanted to scream, hit (inanimate) things and curl up in a tiny little ball forever. I desperately wanted someone to understand what I was going through and, at the same time, knew they wouldn’t. I just wanted someone to look my way and realize that I was at the end of my rope and needed help. No amount of cutting/burning would release enough pain to allow me to function, but I did want to function. The only reason I’d want to die was because no one would understand how hurt and devastated I was. It was Glenn who pushed me to the point where I wanted to die. That is, he and his buddies who decided it would be funny to hear some stupid, foolish, idiotic chick 500 miles away who’d had a 17-year relationship with him until he disappeared for two years, leaving said chick to discover she liked women a hell of a lot more than men, including Glenn, tell that rat bastard how much she loved him still, wanted to get back together and have him pretend it was within the realm of possibility. I think of what he did to me and I am still humiliated even though I shouldn’t be. If he had a conscience, Glenn would be the one who feels shame and humiliation. However, it seems he doesn’t and never will.

I’ve been told that I have to move past this–that Glenn’s threats against my life weren’t credible because he lives 500 miles away. They don’t know him like I know him. Five hundred miles is nothing for him. He used to drive that regularly to see me. He loves to drive. And if he chooses, he certainly has the means to hire someone to carry out his threats. Barring some monumental law enforcement fuck up, he’ll be the first person the authorities will look at. Since he would have had to cross state lines either to conspire or to have someone carry out the plot, it then becomes a federal crime. My lawyer thinks I’m diverting all my attention to him when I’m really grieving my mother. Hello! Ever heard of multitasking? Glenn can and will wait for years until his victim is most vulnerable and then strike. He’s already done it to me once. I’ve seen him do it to other people before as well. I only saw a glimpse of his dark side. It’s a place from which no light escapes, like a black hole in the center of his soul. With me, his chosen weapon was always the great mindfuck. I cannot begin to describe how much he hurt me until he finally decided he wouldn’t anymore and we became lovers, although he’s the one who had control. I guess he figured that there was something inside that was worth dealing with and needed a second, third and fourth look. What was going on is that I took a lot of body blows to my emotions and continued to love him, for better or worse.

Do I go to bed worried that I won’t wake up? No. Do I go to bed worried that my furbabies won’t have anyone to care for them if something happens to me? Damn straight I do! If it weren’t for them, I wouldn’t care who did what to me to end my life. I’m tired of living it myself. I want peace in death and a chance to come back one day in different circumstances. Then again, I wouldn’t get a chance to choose my life. That would be up to The Powers That Be. They could decide that I’m unworthy and put me in even more untenable circumstances always ending the same way. Eventually, I won’t want to come back. I’m almost to that point now. As I said, I’m tired.