Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Tuesday's Rant

It is hard enough to raise children. I get that. Sometimes I can't even put two sentences together before my daughter shatters my moment and demands my full-on attention, interrupting my thoughts, my actions, my ability to do even simple tasks.

Today at the grocery store it was all I could do to just grab our stuff and get through the checkout line without wanting to lose it on her for her disruptive behavior….insisting she bring this giant purse (I agreed only to avoid a meltdown in the parking lot) where she proceeded to drop things out of it constantly, crushing against the fresh flowers I tucked into the cart after I told her not to, begging for more snacks after having both hers and mine, then repeatedly singing in an overly loud and annoying tone even after I told her to use her inside voice. Five minutes ago it was cute, now people are rolling their eyes. Charming? Not so much!

But still, as frustrated as I get, and believe me I get plenty frustrated and impatient (!!), I could never actually smack her, throw her against a radiator, spray Lysol down her throat, or heaven forbid, f@#k her! What the hell kind of un-evolved, imbalanced, self-important, disturbed kind of person(s) could do this sort of thing? Yet it happens every day, all the time, in the shadows and cracks, and right under our noses. Our generation and the next generation.

The more tales of abuse and neglect I hear, as they trickle into my inbox, I sense that this thing is systemic. It is innocuous and all around us. It is a virus that is seeping out of control under our skin. A virus that needs to be brought to light and eradicated once and for all.

While the president is our there war mongering and stirring up a hornets nest in the middle east, he is also preaching "moral family values" and abstinence over informed choices and removing condom-dispensing in the schools. Yeah, that's effective. His superiority-like stance over right-to-life will throw back years of work to give women the power to make her own decisions about her body, and now his same "moral" stance is also threatening to kill potential lives who could be spared via stem cell research. Are you telling me that he has some sort of control over dead, unviable fetuses now? What kind of dictatorship is this? And how does his need to protect "life" ring true when his troops are slaughtering innocent people every day "over there."

My daughter was born in a teaching hospital. They asked if we would donate her placenta and cord blood to the hospital for research. I'm OK with that, she's done with it. What if our child's blood and stem cells contribute to a cure for any number of as yet incurable diseases. I'm all for that. And those unviable fetuses you never hear about but plenty of women have spontaneously miscarried? Why couldn't those mounds of cells actually help someone? Why can't the grief and loss be turned into something positive and life-affirming, something healing actually? Well no, not if Mr. George Dub-ya has his say in the matter.

What about the numbers of our own emotionally dead children walking around this country right now, without proper supervision, nourishment, healthcare, a decent quality of life or education? Is he looking out for them? No. He's too busy saving unviable, unborn children. Not like he'd take care of them either once they got here. He is like the big stupid uncle abusing us on the sly, warning us not to tell, blinding us from our truth, manipulating us into powerlessness and apathy, all the while yanking on our fear chain, rendering us useless. Where are we heading? It is atrocious to me that we live in this country in the 21st century and yet in some ways it is like we are rolling back to the dark ages! What is going on? Why are we taking it?

As I try to make sense of this pain, this outrage, I know it is easy to go numb. It is easy to feel overwhelmed and helpless, to just shut it off. It is easy to disassociate. Not care. Those of us with traumatic backgrounds are good at that. We've been doing it all our lives.

But that won't help matters.

In my small way, the best I can come up with is that in excavating our dark, hidden secrets, our own tales of abuse and neglect, we bring to light healing for ourselves and for others. We open a path out of the darkness saying, here, it's ok to come out now. We share our tales so that hopefully no one else will have to endure what we've endured.

One of the best things we can do is parent consciously. Take responsibility from conception onward, or don't have children. Show up and actually be present in their lives. Help make our children's needs be met. Help them feel safe and loved. Seems so simple, like it ought to be automatic. As I parent my daughter and learn to re-parent my own inner child, I am, hopefully, taking small baby steps toward changing history. I am healing family wounds that go back generations, and not just my history but collective histories as well.

Maybe together we'll beat this virus yet.

I sure hope so.

And in the meantime, will you PLEASE settle down already!

Ok. I'll get off my soapbox now.

1 comment:

Suzy said...

You're 110% right. The abuse seems to be contagious. We hear more and more of this immoral, outrageous behavior every day. George W is in his ivory tower living in a 1950's Leave it to Beaver sitcom. Nothing touches him.
Very poignant piece Tanya.