Friday, July 08, 2005

You boys are survivors.

Top of the morning gents,

A wise man once wrote: non-linear emotions are hard to manipulate, express and debate on 2-dimensional paper with linear sequences of logic.

I think he was trying to say that it’s safe to express factual data, but risky to share events we find painful, frightful, and highly emotional.

You boys are survivors: sufferers of violence, abuse, neglect, and trauma.

You boys may now realize why I leave this arena gaping wide open: I invite any and all of you to express your suffering and partake the reassurance that all the rest of us will love you killers in uniform, regardless.

We happily take crap off each other. Not because we’re dumb asses, but ‘cuz abused boys require a little chiding and coaxing before we’ll fess up and share wrongful injuries we received from humans that failed us: humans that betrayed and hurt us when they were supposed to stick up for, love and protect us. These humans of plethora relationships could be moms, dads, aunts and uncles, but worse of all: brothers, sisters, and best friends.

This is the place you’re free to heal, and we all got some damn hurtful things best gotten off our chests. Some of you lads have been insulted and degraded by hateful mothers, but more of you have been hurt by violent fathers and kin.

Healing is horribly painful, and more often than not is most effective with some degree of re-injury. Nice thing about typing all these wonderful letters to each other, we can hide trembling in our voices and our tears fall invisibly silent down our cheeks and onto our keyboards.

This is one of many zones that I will violently defend where you won’t be made to feel wrong for suppressing pain and actually encouraged to communicate guilt for actions beyond your control. Each one of you has been carrying a heavy load for far too long.

I’ve seen some of you fetch breathless boys from deep waters, disintegrated girls from inverted 4-wheelers and crushed vehicles, and assembled body parts like crude puzzles to make sure they all came from just one broken child.

I also know that you boys quietly envied these dearly departed souls for their eased burdens and released agony of its ever-increasing weight. You never learned that life long best friends are the best we got, and the only place where you might get some relief from your burdens. It’s also one of many zones where you’re free to communicate guilt for trauma and bruises beyond your responsibility.

Goddamn it, it’s not your fault, but easing your pain is all of our responsibility.

Guilt is a funny and predictable human response to resentment, hatred, and fear, and is always the lingering emotion we retain long after a good beating, break up, or abandonment.

Another funny thing about guilt, it vaporizes the moment you notice that caring lads like us recognize the fact it’s not, and never was, your fault. Guilt clings to your back and to your stomach for years, even though you’re not the offender, but the victim.

Ya see, guilt, more often than not, clings persistently to the wrong child as a lasting and cruel haunting for broken bones and bruised faces. Besides you graying gunslingers, all of your children know this too.

Don’t believe me? Just ask one.

Every time you or your wives throw a temper tantrum and slap, punch or hurt your children, the injured child adds one more serving to an already burdensome and backbreaking load. Every nasty insult, push or shove that we parents dole out to our children is merely another featherweight piece of straw added to your kid’s life load of pain and inadequacy.

There ain’t no determining how much your kids can shoulder, but the last straw will most certainly not break your child’s back, but our hearts.

Every one of you has a special place where you store horrible events. This storage bin of suffering is the inventory of mistreatment and bloody trauma we conceal from each other and pray stays under lock and key.

Your children also have such a storage bin, and the burden is always one straw away from breaking their concentration on keeping eyes dry and upper lips stiff and cheeks free from rivulets of salty water.

I believe we owe our children better, so from this day forward we might try to alleviate the predictable scar tissue encroachment slowly wrapping around their hearts and tear ducts.

As you boys age, your vision will improve, thus allowing you all to see through your children’s camouflage and protective barriers, to that storage bin of overwhelming tenderness and pain.

As fathers, we have a responsibility to alleviate this burden and to lighten our dear children’s painful load of internal suffering. It’ll be a wonderful day when I witness a bird’s eye view of you lads taking your children for walks, and sitting together alone with them for talks.

Shame is bulletproof, so to pick the lock to their storage bin of suffering, you’ll need to clear a sufficiently safe zone by sharing your own dark cellar of haunts. Trust me, once a child discovers he’s not the only human on earth that shoulders this burden alone and that you too have a heavy yoke of agony, he’ll happily tip his treasure box over and spill it’s contents for you both to examine. He’ll likely spill lots of tears and sobs too.

We’re all older now, and you boys ain’t boys no more: you’re fathers. Lend a hand, and a heart and spend a few quiet moments each week helping your blessed children dump out their toy box, and their box of torment.

Once you get used to such intimate discomfort, you can help your beloved wives tip over their toy boxes, and their hidden catacombs of fermenting torture.

I’ve always had a hard time keeping friends, but not faith. Faith is a word that defies definition, but not my explanations.

We’ve been friends for pert near 20 years now. My promise to you all is another 20 years of support, understanding, and uncomfortably close friendship and intimacy. Shit, we’re closer to each other and share more secrets than we do with our own wives.

Speaking from the perspective of a grandfather twice over, I expect more than excellence from you fathers, I naively and faithfully anticipate miracles.

To quote a fellow angel with broken wings and battered halo, Dean6Killer,"Keep the faith brothers."



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