Sunday, April 17, 2011

O is Originations

         I came home this afternoon from a friend's baby shower.  I'm at that age where there are usually a buncha babies at these events (duh, right?) and usually around the same age.  Anyway, there were quite a few under one.  Mostly they were old enough to sit up on their own but not old enough to be screaming and running all the time.  A pretty good age, for those of us who are kid-less.  We can play with them without fear of breaking them, also knowing that they can't really tell us if our breath stinks or ask why our boobs are so big. 
         So as i was looking around the room at these toddlers (?) i was beginning to wonder at what point is the point when we screw up irreversably.  "We" meaning the adults, the caregivers, the theoretical parents.  At what point do we mess them up so badly that they will spend a lifetime "dysregulated" (*this is the newest medical jargon) and therefore pretty much jumping from institution to institution?  Most of the kids i work with had marks against them before they even popped out.  Many were born from a parent that was using drugs at the time of conception and/or birth.  Some were products of rape, and some have no idea who their bio father is/was.  Sometimes even the mother doesn't know.  Not even "his name's joe and he's from new jersey."  Literally they won't ever know.  Before they even found the start line they were fucked.
        So exactly what age was it when they figured out that they were disposable; that they must only trust themselves to meet their own needs? And when exactly is it that you can do irrepairable damage to a human?  Is it when the parent decides to loan out the baby for sex/drugs?  Is it when they push it down stairs, try to drown it in the bathtub, use it as a frequent ashtray for fun?  It is when they start molesting it themselves or lock it in a room and leave it alone for a few days to sit in its soiled clothes? What about when they chain it to a bed or lock it in a cage?  Pour boiling water on it or use the iron when they are too lazy to beat the kid?  Is it when they use it as a human shield from law enforcement officers? Or is it when they abandon it all together?
       It's quite strange that we don't remember anything before the age of 5, approximately.  Wouldn't it be odd if you could remember your birth?  What would be the first thing we would've seen?
       I have a lot on my mind today, mostly regarding the concept of chance and luck.  Do i want to believe that i have someone to thank for this?  What did i do to deserve having all of my needs met at the beginning?  And what did they do to not?  Yes, basically the injustice of the universe and other baffling questions.  As i ate my chocolate cupcake, surrounded by old friends, the only thing i could come up with was gratitude. 

14 comments:

Lena said...

I work with a similar population. I have asked myself that question on a regular basis.

Your ending gave me the chills.

Nicely done.

oldegg said...

Well you certainly sucked us in with your opening only to horrify us with life's little realities. Thank you for that as we continue to cushion ourselves in our own small worlds. Even chocolate cupcakes don't help do they?

Alena said...

This made me cry. I was one of those screwed up kids, though for some reason I've turned out alright, and didn't get into nearly as much trouble as so many others I knew with less trauma in their pasts. It must be heartbreaking to work with children from those stories :(

Sue Rice Swimwear said...

These are the blog posts that are worth becoming viral. We take our hat off to you for working with children from these situations - it must be very difficult.

Best Wishes,

SR

PhotoDiction said...

Makes you wonder why love is so difficult some times. How many, for the lack of it, are doomed? And how many, for the simple granting of it, would be saved?

Amanda said...

Unfortunately for the majority of the people in this world, this kind of a start in life is a given.

And then, just when you've just about decided that humanity is a lost cause, you meet those who somehow manage to overcome this and worst.

jaerose said...

I am glad it ended with a cupcake...'dysregulated'..who thinks of these terms? People who popped out just fine and dandy we assume..takes a whole lot of effort to forget the stuff you do remember so maybe the loss of 5 years isn't such a bad thing..and who in the world is 'regulated'?..Jae

christi said...

I just recently found your blog and I love this post. As a mother of an almost-8-month-old baby, the first party made me laugh. As a human being, the second part made me cry. Prior to becoming a stay-at-home mom, I worked with a similar population. The life stories I heard broke my heart and there are a few that still torment me and I wonder where those young people ended up and how their lives turned out. With a new baby, I do often think about how, by the luck of the draw, she ended up with a loving family that can provide for her needs. What about the baby born into an abusive, neglectful situation? What about the baby born to a homeless family who struggles to provide food and shelter for their loved ones? What about the baby born in a mud hut in Africa who doesn't even get basic necessities met? Thank you for this post. It starts my week off feeling grateful for all I have.

Ramesh Sood said...

You finally reached the right place.. came up with GRATITUDE..we spend life times but don't find the path that leads us there..and you could come up so early..perhaps yes!!! Loved reading your post...
Beautiful questions asked..let us now find answers..within..

Ramesh Sood said...

You finally reached the right place.. came up with GRATITUDE..we spend life times but don't find the path that leads us there..and you could come up so early..perhaps yes!!! Loved reading your post...
Beautiful questions asked..let us now find answers..within..

Ramesh Sood said...

You finally reached the right place.. came up with GRATITUDE..we spend life times but don't find the path that leads us there..and you could come up so early..perhaps yes!!! Loved reading your post...
Beautiful questions asked..let us now find answers..within..

Ramesh Sood said...

You finally reached the right place.. came up with GRATITUDE..we spend life times but don't find the path that leads us there..and you could come up so early..perhaps yes!!! Loved reading your post...
Beautiful questions asked..let us now find answers..within..

Jeffrey Beesler said...

It is a testament to the strength of humanity that we can overcome this adversity. While not everyone is able to do so, those who do are an inspiration to others out there.

Reflections said...

And the ultimate of your questions... what did I do to deserve having my needs met? and what did they do to not?

Gratitude being the profound answer! We should always appreciate what life has dealt us, good or bad, most likely someone else has been through worse. And for those who have been, they are fortunate to have people like you working with them. (I dabbled in a similar area, before coming to rest working with special needs.)