A Feather in the Wind

by Julius

Never knowing who I was, what I was, where I belonged.....floating here, floating there, like a feather....going nowhere really.

At age 3 I knew what 'that' feeling was like, but that's all. Then one night, while visiting an aunt in another state, (I was not yet in school, had only gone to summertime activities for children in the projects) I awoke to my father's drunken voice telling me 'shhhhhhhhhh'--his large fingers were inside my underpants in my crotch. He asked me if I had learned about 'fuck' in school. I didn't know what he meant, I was scared and started to make loud noises even though he told me not to. The whole household awoke and he said he was checking on me because I was having a bad dream. I must have agreed with him, I don't remember. I believe I must have been 3 because I had barely turned age 6 when my little brother was struck/killed by a pickup as we were crossing the street, he was buried on his 5th birthday. So, if he was still alive during this event with my father, and I had not started school yet, I must have been 3 or 4.

My parents always fought...knock-down, drag-out, drunken fights. I stayed at my grandparents a lot. I remember my grandmother making a big deal of my underpants--there was a discharge or something and I was taken to the doctor--a pelvic exam was conducted (much later on in life I realized that's what it was). I remember screaming during the ordeal, answering questions (of which I had no clue what was being asked). My mother was wailing and screaming and crying. Most of the concern seemed to be about whatever it was she was wailing about. She asked me questions and she was upset with me. So, when she asked questions and then gave me some probable responses I agreed with her--yes, I had put something inside of myself....what was it? I tried to think of something to say that would satisfy everyone. After that ordeal, I stayed at my grandparents' home more and more often.

When I was at my parents' home the physical fights between them continued. My father would beat my mother and she would appeal to me to help her--I was 4 or 5. After the event with my little brother's death my father drank more, more fights and older relatives said he was grieving over my little brother's death. I felt guilty because I shouldn't have let him cross the street into the path of that pickup. Before he ran across the street (my father had gotten home from work and my little brother was in a hurry to go home and greet him) I grabbed his suspenders but they snapped undone and he ran into the path of the pickup. Anyway, after that, I seemed to stay at my grandparent's home on a more-steady basis.

I was in my preteens and a mouthy kid, so back to my parents' home I went. My father was the one who discovered I had started my period (he had been 'checking' on me while I slept). Throughout my early teen years I was mouthy and rebellious. I often answered the telephone and a strange man would ask for my mother.....more fights and now I was getting beaten by my father (I was mouthy and rebellious). He used his fists, I was slapped in the face, a leather belt was used. Years later, when I was in therapy, my wonderful counselor (the fifth and final one) informed me that incest victims often are beaten by their abusers. In fact, that bit of information from me is what initiated my journey into what had happened to me earlier. You see, the memories were always there, but I never realized I was actually being molested. When I would recall the memories I would feel guilty and bury them away.....I felt evil for conjuring them up.

Needless to say, I was attracted to the same type of demanding, bullying type of men I had grown up around...someone I could 'look up to', who would 'take care' of me, and who would tell me what to do. Someone who would tell me what was wrong with me, and, on occasion if I deserved it, would praise me if I really deserved it.

I'm in my 60s now and still learning more about this....thank you for letting me share this with someone who doesn't know my face or my name. God bless us all.

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