Monday, November 14, 2016

Last Week's Opened Wounds (UPDATED)

Note: Third to last paragraph has been re-edited.

I have a confession to make. I am one of the multitude who was emotionally triggered by the events of last week. It involved Donald Trump and it made me cry like a small child. I haven’t cried like that in a long time. And after I stopped crying, it produced violent urges in me—things I have to repent of and ask God’s forgiveness for thinking.

It was this.
A shocking video [...] emerged on Friday [in which] a Texas mother kicked her young son out of their home after he 'voted' for Trump in a mock election at school, according to TMZ. 
The child screamed in horror as his mother showed him the door, where she left a small suitcase packed with all of his belongings.

'Since you voted for Donald Trump. You can get your sh** and get out,' his mother told him as they stood in front of their door.

As the child started crying and pleading with his mother, she told him to take his sign.
'So when the people see you outside, they know why you're standing out there,' she yells.
The child then sits on the floor as she held up a cardboard sign waiting for him to take it.

As the horrified child takes the sign, she directs him to the door.

'You wanna vote for him, I'm going to show ya,' she says as she unlocks their door.

She is heard saying: 'Get your suitcase and get out! We don't do Donald Trump here. 
The mother then slams the door after forcing the crying child outside.

In the video, the child is seen pulling the suitcase as he walks past their driveway and stands on the sidewalk holding his sign.

'Bye Donald Trump lover,' the mother says. 
The child responds: 'But I got school tomorrow.'

His mother replies: 'Well you should have thought about that.'
The child is eight. The video is available at the link and I can’t watch it again. The creature in question claims that it was just “a joke,” but the boy’s reaction shows a different reality. That creature—called his mother--broke that boy’s heart. And mine was broken along with it. His anguish uncovered a personal anguish buried within me.

Here’s that anguish: when I was a child, my greatest fear was being separated from my parents. I know why.

I have/had great parents--more than just two. I’ve told the story before many times, so I’ll try to make it short here.

My mother is American, my father is Kenyan and I was born and raised in the USA. My parents divorced before my first birthday and, afterward, my father returned to his home country. I had no contact with him until I was 35—twenty years ago—and did not see him face-to-face again until this year. It was a joyous, blessed occasion.

When I was just under two-years-old, I was brought from my birthplace—Chicago—to live in Los Angeles with my great-aunt and great-uncle, Alma and John Simpkins, both gone now.

I view my upbringing by them as almost idyllic. They were both 40 when I was born and never had children from their bodies. I was their child. But my time with them lasted only up to the time when I was nine. They divorced and I was sent to live with my mom and her new husband, Johnny.

The “new guy” wasn’t actually new to me. The two had been dating since I was four and I had long since grown to love Johnny by the time they got married. (Still do—on December 31, 2016, Dad and Mom will have been married for 46 years.)

My teenaged years with my parents were much like most—with one extreme tragedy. At 19, I dropped out of college and joined the USAF, much to my parents’ chagrin. (It did have one huge benefit: my sister was visiting me when I was stationed in Berlin when she met her husband.)

I exited active duty in 1994 to come back to LA and be close to my aging aunt and uncle. Six years after that, my uncle died, and in 2012, my aunt followed. I am grateful to have been close by when each of them passed.

So, what does my story have to do with the story referenced? I tell it so that you can understand why it affected me so deeply. My Aunt Alma said that after she brought me back to LA, I would cry myself to sleep every night for months—wanting my mom. And, later whenever I went back to Chicago to visit my grandparents, I was always in grief for a bit, fearing that I would never see my aunt and uncle again. I never told any of them this.

My mom will hate reading this, but I’m not trying to make her feel guilty. I know for a fact that she what she thought was best—to have me grow up in a home with two parents. And, later, she moved to LA to be near me; it’s where she met Dad. But my childhood feelings were what they were and I find that I am still affected by them to this day.

How did my upbringing affect me as an adult? I have trouble trusting men that I have “loved.” I put the verb in quotes because, even at 55, I’m not sure that true love has ever happened for me yet.

I live in a different state than my parents. I know they’d like me to come be near them and I think it will happen at some point. But, ever since I joined the Air Force, I have followed my own path. That, too, has a lot to do with my upbringing. To be honest, as a child, I always felt unacknowledged. My independence is born of that.

Right now, God the Father and I are working it all out. I’m in the process of learning to trust Him.

Therefore, when I read the story of the “mother” who put her son out ON PURPOSE, I became that grieving child again for a little while.

That shit had nothing to do with Donald Trump. It was about a monster whose offspring had the misfortune to be born of her. I empathize with him because I know what it’s like to feel insecure as a child. But I don’t know what it’s like to have my parents intentionally turn me out into the cold.

I know how my childhood fears have shaped me. Every single day, I have to get up and volitionally trust God--even in His very existence and fear only Him. What will that creature's little "joke" do to that child's faith?

I hate that woman with the fire of ten thousand suns for what she did to her son and, though I know I need to repent of that, it will take time. I pray that the boy and his brother will be taken from her and put in a home where they will feel secure—and I pray that the two boys will come to a relationship with Jesus the Christ. Stranger things have happened.

Mom, Dad, and Father, I love you and honor you. If you read this, don’t feel bad about the choices you made. Just know that I am yours, always will be, and that we serve a merciful God.

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