This week my little daughter Osun Karode (Oshun Kah-ro-deh) who is wise beyond her years sent something to my email, and beneath she wrote “You are wonderful! I sniff and smile a little in remembrance of her cyber embrace, love and warmth, but what she sent me were a few words she had seen somewhere and it really touched me because it summed up most of my life or my feelings rather. I had no idea that what I felt at times could be captioned in a nutshell, but here it was in my email. I spent a long time just staring at it, I began to reflect on my life and what I had experienced at the hands of cruel people.
I am affected by this to even to today, yet I had no idea what it was or even how to explain it, truth be told. Now you all know that I share my life with you, I hide nothing. This blog has healed me much, and as Yw said with quiet wisdom which he exudes, that when he first came on the blog he could see that many of us had some distress and needed healing, but as he looked at us in the new year, he sensed that it had lessened, the healing had began.
When I was a small child growing up in my beautiful Jamaica, my father was was a ganja smoker would beat me and often times for nothing. Yes, you read correctly, for nothing, I never was a rude child and so the beatings were for nothing.
I am not trying to bash him or make him look bad, but this is my truth and I will share it. As a child I often wondered why wouldn’t my mother intervene? Especially when she knew that I had done nothing, instead she would tell me as I came in from school to go sleep, before he came. I would come home from school and as I stepped in and settle down here comes the man with beating. It had gotten so bad that he did it almost everyday. My happiest times was when I was at school or church.
There was a time when this was not so, around age five or six. Before my junior sister was born, this man loved me and cared me well. His nickname for me was Nunu and Mungum (nunu why yuh neva teef de ugly name mungum and low cute up Nunu). He would throw me up in the air and catch me while I laughed at our game. He would sit with me and watch sesame street, and we would count with the count and laugh at cookie monster wid him craven self, and mimic Ocar the Grouch.
After my sister was born, he became a different person to me. I could go on and on, and you may say, but that sounds like physical abuse Obara, the title say Emotional abuse! But while the bruises heal, the pain of the memory remains. I made reference to those times because it was the earliest times I can remember of me worrying about my safety at the hands of my father, one ho was suppose to care for me and protect me. Yet I loved him very much. Children are so innocent, how can you beat someone who is defenseless against your brutality, someone who cannot fight back? Not that I would fight him back, but to beat me so hard with his hands, (he did construction work so he was strong) sticks, belts, electric cords. I never held any grudge against him, and like I did with my mom, if he went out and came back in, I would run to hug him and greet him, forgiving him for the torture he gave me.
I remember in high school, when the students had re-written the words of a song, the parody of the Battle Hymn of the Republic “Mine Eyes have seen the Glory” http://www.traditionalmusic.co.uk/hymn-lyrics/mine_eyes_have_seen_the_glory.htm
The children had changed the words and had lyrics, which said
“Mine eyes have seen the glory of the burning of the school, we have conquered every teacher we have broken every rule
and we plan to hang the principal tomorrow afternoon when we are going home
Glory, glory, hallelujah! Glory, glory, hallelujah!
Glory, glory, hallelujah! when we are going home
When I was drinking water at the cooler,Mr Tulloch (our Spanish teacher) came and hit me with a ruler
I met him at the door with a loaded 44 and he exists no more
Glory, glory, hallelujah! Glory, glory, hallelujah!
Glory, glory, hallelujah! when we are going home!
The vice principal heard about the song which we had formed choirs and would sing it. I was the one to lead the orchestra as the children sang. We were called into our class room and all the children pointed at me, saying that I was the one who brought about the music, when that was a total lie! I was shocked at how they all turned on my, we were all punished for our mis-deeds, but my punishment was more severe than the rest. Those memories are still with me.
When we came to America, anything that happened in the household, even if I was not there, I would be blamed, never my sisters but me, I was the fall guy for all. It was just too much. This followed me while I lived with the wicked baby father, for all his wickedness his equally evil mother and she devil sisters would blame me for my circumstances while I suffered under the hands of their wretched Adolf Hitler Heir apparent son. The memories as I write is gut wrenching, and I am tempted to feel hate for these people, but I am reminded that hate is never a good thing, and I must never let it be a apart of my repertoire.
I opened my shop and here again, I met women who were so jealous of me and my life with the worst man of earth, the wicked baby father next to Mr. High grade, who could compete for the title. They too gave me hell and would often gang up against me with their gossips and slander, and these are people who I helped.
When High grade came into my life, as I have told you all before I was chief cook and bottle washer in the house while he smoked ganja all day and gambled, I must admit that I enabled him. Yet he would find ways to blame me for his laziness and anything he could think of. While I lived with him, I despised him,but I could not put him out, I wondered where would he go, how would he manage, yet he felt no way to cuss me and disgrace me to my neighbors and in front of my children. Let me make it clear, I did not sit meekly under his abuse, I bared my teeth as well, and stood up for myself against this bastard, but when the fight dwindled, I would sit y myself, sad and pensive wondering what was this that I brought into mine and my children’s life!
Even my own children, some of them, whenever there is a problem they look to me for the blame, if they believe that I am paying their problem much attention, I cannot tell you how distressing this is. I once sat with the little one and pointed out the pattern to her and she saw it and agreed. Finally, someone had seen what I had been going through all my life, it hurt like hell.
Even my now husband in Africa, the other day he locked his keys into his jeep, the man turned around and blamed me, saying that I got him upset and that is why he did foolishness! Can you believe this? Somebody backed into our jeep and he turned to me and said you see what you caused! This accusation was because we were at a party and I did not want to leave when he said come, but how was it my fault if some one backed into us?
I calmed down and later I told him my life and what I had been through and expressed to him that he too always laid blame on me and I did not like it, he apologized and have not done it since, but I am not relaxed, as yet! But I must say that he is the first one to ever apologize to me for it.
I knew that I hurt every time someone is insensitive of my feelings, and the blame thing which has followed me up from my childhood until today is painful to say the least….Yet I am careful of every ones feelings, I do not like to see anyone hurt, at all, at all!
As a single parent who had gone through these things, I was always mindful of how I treated my own children. I was careful with words I chose to use with them, I never allowed them much to visit my family, lest they hurt them the same way I was hurt.Their Psychological health was very important to me as well as their physical health and I guarded them with all that I had. They only had me and I only had them and I took my responsibility seriously, after all the fathers had run to the hills with no care for me or them, never to return(they were not missed), and I knew what I went through, I wished not for them to ever experience. They were and still are the most precious things to me, my only blood family!
We have to stand up to our abusers. It is hard when you are a child and being flogged everyday knowing that you did not do anything wrong to remove your self from your circumstances.While the bruises from the beatings will surely heal, what of the emotional scars? Will they ever go? When a particular person is singled out and tormented like in the Piper story and what they did to Peter, and even what Pier herself faced how do we heal those people?
I remember during the terrible years with the children’s father, I was so traumatized, that I would drop everything I picked up. Whenever I went to my mothers house, I would wish if she would hug me, I wanted a hug so desperately, but I never asked for it, and she never gave it. other than when I was young, I have never been hugged by either parents. I would stand in her living room shaking, because of the abuse with the wicked baby father at home, just begging her in my head to hug me!
For years, I shied away from people, from friends and any socializing because I am aware of what I go through with people always making me the fall guy for their own shortcomings or problems. I opt to stay with my children and not entertain the idea of friendship, because it never worked out for me, at the end of the day some finger would point at me.
I am so strong, that I never regarded this as a problem, but upon seeing what this little girl sent me, I realize that although I am strong, most of my actions and decisions are based upon these feelings of rejection which this type of abuse have left with me.
It was this blog which made me first realize the fear of rejection feeling. I want you all you see me as strong, and fearless and I am, I really am. I am a natural born leader albeit loving, but a leader nonetheless. I fear no one, but I cannot hide the fact that I am human, and while I have never faced anything like rape or molestation, or any devastation such as those, I have faced abuse of the mind which have affected me and how I carry out my affairs, how I view people, and my mis trust in relationships, not just intimate one but also platonic ones as well. Iron sharpeneth Iron and the countenance of one brightens the other.
The Obeah Garden Post helped me a great deal after reading all of your stories;
I applaud all who shared their stories as I share mine everyday. Healing begins within, and I have learned something for all my years upon this earth which is everybody needs somebody, if it is even just to listen to you. This is why I share my experiences, to let you all learn from my own experiences and to give you the courage to speak.
I am here for all of you if you need an ear, no judgment! Or if you need to talk. My email is on the site and I answer everyone. I have a shoulder, lean on it, I have two arms, let me hug you, weep if you must, crying is healing, bring your fears and let me face them with you! Let us heal each other! No man is an Island, no one should stand alone.
You may want to read the below link;
“Why isn’t there a commandment to “honor thy children” or at least one to “not abuse thy children”? The notion that we must honor our parents causes many people to bury their real feelings and set aside their own needs in order to have a relationship with people they would otherwise not associate with. Parents, like anyone else, need to earn respect and honor, and honoring parents who are negative and abusive is not only impossible but extremely self-abusive. Perhaps, as with anything else, honoring our parents starts with honoring ourselves. For many adult children, honoring themselves means not having anything to do with one or both of their parents.”
― Beverly Engel, Divorcing a Parent
“The scars from mental cruelty can be as deep and long-lasting as wounds from punches or slaps but are often not as
obvious. In fact, even among women who have experienced violence from a partner, half or more report that the man’s emotional abuse is what is causing them the greatest harm.”
― Lundy Bancroft, Why Does He Do That?: Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men
“YOUR ABUSIVE PARTNER DOESN’T HAVE A PROBLEM WITH HIS ANGER; HE HAS A PROBLEM WITH YOUR ANGER.
One of the basic human rights he takes away from you is the right to be angry with him. No matter how badly he treats you, he believes that your voice shouldn’t rise and your blood shouldn’t boil. The privilege of rage is reserved for him alone. When your anger does jump out of you—as will happen to any abused woman from time to time—he is likely to try to jam it back down your throat as quickly as he can. Then he uses your anger against you to prove what an irrational person you are. Abuse can make you feel straitjacketed. You may develop physical or emotional reactions to swallowing your anger, such as depression, nightmares, emotional numbing, or eating and sleeping problems, which your partner may use as an excuse to belittle you further or make you feel crazy.”
― Lundy Bancroft, Why Does He Do That?: Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men
“It is not the the bruises on the body that hurt. It is the wounds of the heart and the scars on the mind.”
― Aisha Mirza
“… you don’t have to wait for someone to treat you bad repeatedly. All it takes is once, and if they get away with it that once, if they know they can treat you like that, then it sets the pattern for the future.”
― Jane Green, Bookends
“The human race tends to remember the abuses to which it has been subjected rather than the endearments. What’s left of kisses? Wounds, however, leave scars.”
― Bertolt Brecht
“You know all that sympathy that you feel for an abused child who suffers without a good mom or dad to love and care for them? Well, they don’t stay children forever. No one magically becomes an adult the day they turn eighteen. Some people grow up sooner, many grow up later. Some never really do. But just remember that some people in this world are older versions of those same kids we cry for.”
― Ashly Lorenzana
Omi adágún a b’èérí lójú, èyí tó ńlọ tó nbọ ló ńmọ́ /
Stagnant water is replete with dirt; it’s the flowing stream that remains clean….Yoruba Proverb!
[Spots can easily be wiped out; don’t become one. Keep moving!]
All religion are valid as long as it teaches peace and love…. Obara Meji!
There are no disappointments in life, only lessons learned!….Obara Meji