The Eyes of a Child
I’m going to go way back, all the way back to the days when I use to sit on the stoop watching the sun go down and recalling all the events that had happened that day. I would sit and watch my mother strum her folk guitar and sing to herself in the arrangements of the old southern blues. BB King was one of her favorite minstrels of that era and she would have a look on her face representative of all the pain she felt throughout the years.
My mother would have never been considered an educated woman. I believe she only had a 3rd-grade education; however, she still harnessed the qualities necessary to produce and raise a family.
The process in which my mother loved, cared and disciplined her children would be considered child abuse by today’s standards.
From the time my mother was conceived and brought into this world, she was destined to feel heartbreak at a level in which many others might have considered suicide. Back in those days a woman, especially a black one, was not considered to be worth protecting or empathizing with. She was at best a tool to fulfill the need of angry narcissistic men in a cold bitter society.
She wasn’t given the opportunity to grow up in the way a person needs to in order to become a well-rounded individual. The traumatic burden she was forced to carry made her even more dysfunctional. While young girls were playing house, she was not pretending but experiencing the reality of a cruel and callous world.
Was she too Young? Yes, but no one seemed to care. She wasn’t important enough, she wasn’t smart enough, She wasn’t educated enough. However, she was pretty enough to be taken advantage of at a young age and introduced to the world as a victim of circumstance.
She was my mother. In my eyes I never saw the faults she possessed, I was only intrigued with the way she continued to function when times were hard. Yet she was vulnerable and in her face, I saw a woman who was in pain. She loved the boys in the family to the level of being extreme, but her love for my sister showed an uncanny amount of self-hatred or lack of empathy.
By today’s standards, she would be a prime candidate for mentally disordered treatment. At times I found myself feeling responsible for her pain while working extremely hard to make the pain she might have felt go away. Not understanding the signs while looking through the eyes of a child that my mother was beyond my help.
I also noticed that I was a victim as well, I chose women in my life who were as broken as she was. I wasn’t aware of the pitfalls that were being laid before me. Every woman I found myself attracted to had some similarities to my mother.
This created a co-dependent mindset that would eventually cause me to halt my forward progress and take stock in the lessons I should have learned from each previous encounter.
The woman or man you choose may be a signal to you that there are hidden feelings and unresolved emotions that you must acknowledge before you can move on to the next love in your life. We bury the hurt and memories in a vault in our subconscious mind only to have it reappear when we least expect it. This is due to unresolved issues that we must eventually deal with, sooner or later.
Once you have confronted those issues and hopefully resolved the circumstances that continued to plague you, then and only then will you be at peace with yourself.
Remember the truth lies in the eyes of a child, we need to see the world as it truly is and not how we feel it should be. Upon accomplishing this feat you can breathe a sigh of relief that all is good again.
Your past has a lot to do with who you are today, but working on yourself to improve you, will determine the person you are… tomorrow.
By: Ernest J.
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