I blamed the isolation for my loneliness and yet it had as much do with my view on life as the emptiness that had its hold me. I don't believe anyone really understands even to this day few would recognize the path. Most compare one situation to another, and label and condemn. The average response is they must have been weak, unintelligent and so on. When I look back at the years of childhood, I see my parents as neither weak nor unintelligent.
I was thirteen when I held my first job, it took two trolley buses to get to work and two on the return. Childhood was stripped from us early,I think many of us grow up quickly. I always felt like a little girl in a grown up world. I worked with elderly people, I didn't have problems with it. I learned a lot from them, as I look back I can see each person who crossed my path and what they brought to my life.
I had held several jobs as a teenager, I worked as a waitress in a dept. store and I was still dealing with my mother and fathers violence. I had been crying before I made it to work and the policy is you don't take your problems to work, I forced a smile, wiped the tears from my eyes and proceeded as if nothing had happen. Of all the people to come into the restaurant was my art teacher, he slipped a note into my hand with his phone number and a message if you need to talk call me. I never called and yes I needed to talk. I kept so much inside for so long,
I never looked at my parents as bad people, to this day I still don't . What I see was two people of different walks of life, who could not come together on the same stage.
My mother cried almost everyday of her life, I can remember few days when she was happy, surely the sad ones outweighed them. My sister said that after I was born my mother suffered depression , there was no doubt with four children, she needed some help.
My eldest sister took full responsibility she washed the clothes by hand, ironed each piece, bathed and dressed and then set off to school. She was only nine years old when I was born, by eleven she was like the only mother I would know. She became very protective of us, to this day she has this hard shell that she likes to portray, but I know the warmth from inside of her. I understand a film that she surrounds herself with. It is her form of survival, her strength that continues to get her through each day.
We talk more then we ever did, about dreams, the past, her fears and passion for life as well as her regrets. Growing up down by the river, we became strong swimmers, if ever there were guardian angels, we surely had them, as we did every thing little girls shouldn't. Racing the trains, swimming the river, and wandering distances amongst the trees with out supervision.
I was born the tag along, I don't remember to often playing with children my age, as wherever my eldest sister went she had me right beside her.
If people knew about our plight, they never led on, or maybe it was because at that time,everyone was dealing with something. The ideal " leave it to beaver family or father knows best " just didn't exist. We had the images of a white picket fence and happily ever after. I always call it the party face, when you meet people and they put on a smile and pretend that their world is perfect. The more you see them, the more they enter your life, the more the party face fades.
Isolation is built of individual barriers built one at a time, so that the adage " alone in a crowded room", becomes a reality. We find ourselves separated by lack of understanding , to only realize when we come together on the same stage we all are dealing with the struggles of life all in just a little bit different way.
I am tired and it's only 7:03, it's cool and dark, the rain has places a dampness in the air and the hollow is draped in silence........