Empty Memories

Not even the scrapbook recalls the love ….. turmoil of emotional child abuse


emotional abuse 2In the quiet evening, your mind strays to younger days. Nestled in the love seat, you think about the lonely life that has lead you down the paths of disillusion. There in the confusion, disconnection is a way of life. Heart wrenching, love was in limited supply; not much to go around and rationed like a commodity. It was not associated with warmth but instead, related to the flowers or gardens.

You would sit in your room and play by yourself. Looking out the window, your mother is in her polka dotted blouse, dark slacks, and her garden gloves. She loves her tomatoes and corn on the cob. You just watched …. sitting inside. She never knew the love you desired or saw devotion because it was all about money – how much dad could bring home. You were too young to understand but you knew that love wasn’t suppose look like that. Looking back, you never heard, “I love you”, as you went off to school or while saying your prayers at my bedside.

Animosity seemed to rule the roost. You listened to your friends as they shared their stories on the way to school. They went out over the weekend and as you knocked on their door, you knew they would not be home.

You would have given anything for your parents to include you in their plans. But to throw a ball or enroll you in a curriculum outside of the classroom wasn’t going to happen. Sadly, you would come home and play while most of your friends played at the beach. Softball was the sport.

Yes, it’s sad as those from broken homes look back. You swore you would never do that to your own children. Now those days are long gone too and all that’s left are voids. Not even the scrapbook recalls the love ….. just tarnished empty pages. The snapshots are faded memories you just as soon forget.

For now, life is all but over; the mid-drift spreads and the hair turns gray. Thoughts are all that’s left, like trash to be thrown away. And here you sit as life goes on.

 


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Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward. (Psalm 127:3)

Fathers, do not provoke your children, lest they become discouraged. (Colossians 3:21)

Whoever troubles his own household will inherit the wind, and the fool will be servant to the wise of heart. (Proverbs 11:29)

Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” (Hebrews 13:5)

 

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Editor’s Notes:

Signs of Emotional Child Abuse:

 

  • Not showing affection.
  • Ignoring the child’s presence and obvious needs.
  • Ignoring the child when he or she is in need of comfort.
  • Not calling the child by his or her name.
  • Making the child feel unwanted, perhaps by stating or implying that life would be easier without the child. For example, a parent may tell a child, “I wish you were never born.”
  • Ridiculing or belittling the child, such as saying, “You are stupid.”
  • Threatening the child with harsh punishment or even death.
  • Continuous verbal abuse.
  • Comparing the child to siblings or peers.
  • Blaming the child for family problems.

 

Ignoring children’s needs, putting them in unsupervised, dangerous situations, or making a child feel worthless or stupid is child abuse. The result is serious emotional harm. But there is help available!

Parental Alienation Awareness Organization: http://www.paawareness.com

Prevent Child Abuse America: 1-800-CHILDREN or preventchildabuse.org
http://www.preventchildabuse.org/images/docs/emotionalchildabuse.pdf

 

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Almighty Child

Children that perceive such miraculous perception ought to flatter themselves in Holy water. Parent abuse is common….

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The word spread and men came bearing gifts. Animals grazed out in the meadows…. we all know the story. A child was born by miraculous conception. There is no other miracle greater than a child that two parents have been blessed with from God. Ah, yes. But most of us have experienced the blessing of your child’s birth. Then our kids grow up and they have the misconception they can do no wrong …

Too many times, I find friends being scolded by their children. It’s as if the child inherited permission from their grandparents. I sat outside in a refreshing breeze last night and listened to how an adolescent can run their lives better than their parents. Though some have never had the pleasure of bearing a child, the Almighty Child can do no wrong. A legend in their own mind, they believe you won’t find fault with their lifestyle. They wander unto this world having more knowledge and skill than those twice their age.

I believe we have created a new class of people – not rich, nor poor – but the self- righteous. They are perfect but only in a mirror, maybe. I hear the sins of these children that proclaim their innocence. Oh, don’t you wish you could return to the righteousness of youth where you could be as perfect as the children are today??

Telling parents all their faults they have made, it’s as if when they achieve enough demerits they will disown their parents. Somebody needs to shake them and remind them that wisdom comes from failures. If parents were as perfect as Christ, there would be no need to reluctantly remind them how irrelevant they are. When someone passes away, the child waits for handouts!

I remember my dad always said, “Those who live in glass houses ought not pitch the first stone”. I believe he was smarter than me. Children that perceive such miraculous perception ought to flatter themselves in Holy water.

The Ten Commandments are written in stone and now you know why. Children, today, will pay for their raising opinions. It’s as if you haven’t witnessed that rodeo played out before. Oh the roulette wheel your children spin. They gamble their life and all you can do is pray for them.

I wonder how many kids ever took the time to understand the Bible? I pray… not for them but for the parents that have been so badly damaged by their children’s immaculate conception of the philosophical washing – not by holy water but by the storm drains of the world.

 


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And they shall say to the elders of his city, ‘This our son is stubborn and rebellious; he will not obey our voice; he is a glutton and a drunkard.’ Then all the men of the city shall stone him to death with stones. So you shall purge the evil from your midst, and all Israel shall hear, and fear. (Deuteronomy 21:20-21)

Whoever spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him. (Proverbs 13:24)

Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord. (Ephesians 6:4)

Do not withhold discipline from a child; if you strike him with a rod, he will not die. If you strike him with the rod, you will save his soul from Sheol. (Proverbs 23:13-14)

Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you. (Exodus 20:12)


 

Editor’s Notes:  Verbal abuse towards parents or other family members by young people is more common than many people think. It is an attempt to control and have power over you or others in the home.  It can happen in families of any culture, religion or situation in life.

Abuse can be a sign of:

  • The children hasn’t learned to control or manage feelings, especially anger. They act out their feelings without using any self-control.
  • The child hasn’t learned to deal with the stresses of life, to solve problems or cooperate.
  • They don’t value or respect other people.
  • They see a parent, often the mother, as weak and powerless.
  • The children are affected by alcohol or drugs. Some drugs can trigger psychosis (being out of touch with the real world) and violence.
  • A young person might act aggressively if they have problems with their mental health.
  • They may be anxious and lash out because they start to think they can’t trust those around them.

Whatever the reason, it doesn’t mean you should put up with it. It is important to get professional help! Many parents find that acting early helps them feel like the parent again. When you do make changes, things seem to get harder before they get better, so make sure you have support. It is important to:

  • Believe in yourself – it isn’t your fault and it doesn’t mean you are a bad parent
  • Learn to remain calm and find ways to deal with stress. Go for walks, have coffee with a friend or do other things that relax you.
  • Build your confidence by patting yourself on the back for each small step you take
  • Talk with someone who can help. Your doctor is a good place to start.
  • Join a group with other parents who are dealing with this too.

almighty children

 

Wandering Back…

God, somehow, has helped me find my way back to the lemonade stands.


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My eyes aren’t 20/20 anymore and hearing isn’t what it should be either. But wandering back, winters were winter and summers were hot as haities. I reminisce those times with you.

Leaving doors unlocked and restful nights, are now things of the past. We would open the windows and listen to the locusts after a spring shower. As the hot summer’s heat sweltered, we slept by the fans trying to relax. Yes, life was good back then.

We sold lemonade (and no permits needed) and made lots of money…or so we thought. Mowing yards was an occupational hazard as poison ivy spread like wildfire. Sea nettles dried on the docks as the sun evaporated the life out of them. As I remember, I never thought I’d live so long.

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Those were awesome times to be a kid; always creating ways to entertain ourselves. We’d play all day until dinner time. Dad would say grace and mom repeated, “Put your napkin in your lap !” – “elbows off the table!” Oh some of the things we wish we could forget! Mom really loved me but she reminded me of boot camp reveille. 0600, “Hurry up you’ll miss the bus!” Homework started at 19:30 and bed was at 21:00. Reflecting, I wonder if it was really worth it. I guess parents plant seeds with hopes some will root. They did the best they could under the circumstances…

Associated with five wars now, I’ve lost some friends from high school and a neighbors son’s never made it home. Looking back, my path wasn’t so bad. I guess mom tried hard to protect me because of the hell she saw. I’ve stumbled some but haven’t we all?? But God, somehow, has helped me find my way back to the lemonade stands and my first love.

Our gracious Father is my insurance to a better life. He has granted me the ability to share, through blogs and my books, with those who choose to follow His Holy word. Anointed, I am, through all the turmoil and my fair share of skirmishes…


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All your children shall be taught by the LORD, and great shall be the peace of your children. (Isaiah 54:13)

Only take care, and keep your soul diligently, lest you forget the things that your eyes have seen, and lest they depart from your heart all the days of your life. Make them known to your children and your children’s children— (Deuteronomy 4:9)

…even as I try to please everyone in every way. For I am not seeking my own good but the good of many, so that they may be saved. (1 Corinthians 10:33)


Wandering back

Time Grows

God brought you to me once more!


As time marches on, we held on to those moments when as adolescents, we played in the leaves. In the crisp air of fall, we spent our weekends raking leaves. We played hide and seek for hours… after all, it was one way I was able to see you.

Then the first frost of ice formed on the puddles. The holidays came first. On Thanksgiving, you left to see your cousins; I sat in my room and stared out the window. I watched the leaves as they swirled; they reminded me of you. Those were the longest four days I could ever remember.

I watched the neighbors string their Christmas lights and wished my dad would let me help. Mom enjoyed me helping her to trim the tree… but, I wondered what you were doing too. I asked Mom if you could come over, but we were too busy. I saved some money to buy you a gift; a sweet necklace with a heart; it was all I could afford. I really wanted to see you on Christmas day.

If I was lucky, I would catch a glimpse of you in another classroom; we ate lunch on different shifts. Your mom would pick you up from school and I rode the bus home.

Spring came and we played around the flag pole on May Day. We joined in, holding hands.  Summer was around the corner and I couldn’t wait! But it was then you moved away.  We lost contact and I never knew where you moved to or where I could find you. I always watched for you to appear at our favorite spots.

Puberty came and my interests changed. Building models and tree forts were my fame until high school and then they were lame. But I never forgot about you….

I married once but it didn’t work out. I knew it was you I should have been with – my soul mate from heaven. God delivered, but it was just the wrong time.

Years later and a little technology, you have showed up on my doorstep. Elated, God brought you to me once more! As “time grows”, so does our love. Now, in our golden years, we wake in the morning holding hands, just like we did as kids.

I just can’t thank God enough for this miracle of love, my soul mate, from way back when…..

us


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Song of Solomon 3:4 – “I have found the one whom my soul loves.”
Ask and pray for God’s wisdom to find the one He has for you….

Has God selected a soul mate for me?   Visit:  https://www.christiancafe.com/blog/2821/does-god-have-a-soul-mate-for-me


Christian Writers
– FaithWriters.com, the Ultimate Community for Christian Writers.

Gifts Untold

I lost a gift from God…


It is 5:30 a.m. on a crisp, cool morning. God has granted the serenity to life, just like a calm before a storm. I am meeting you at the edge where two fronts collide. We chat over useless matters, like the weather. A smile is resonating from our soul as feelings of respect has grown.

We take turns surprising one another while trying to outwit each other’s spirit; laughing and joking about our day; and the immaterial worldly events. Sometimes, we exchange a secret or two about something we heard. Then one more under-the-collar comment and it’s off to our responsible lives. Oh the memories we have! Love is like a hobby – always there if we have time; and if we are too busy, it’s okay. We silently understand.

As the evening arrives, a surreal moment penetrates life. I surprisingly find that you are gone with not even a good-bye. My head hangs low, like standing at a memorial. What once was, is now gone. I’m shedding a tear for my dear friend, whom unbeknownst to me, has moved away.

The next day, I stand where we used to congregate. Like a tomb, it’s an empty house. The sky seems dark as even the sun shares in gloom too. I lost a gift from God… my dear friend is here no more.

You see, sometimes in life, God gives us untold gifts to enjoy. Perhaps it’s an ability to draw or write; maybe it’s a neighbor across the street; a friend who closes your door or takes out the trash when you are running late; the one who has your back when you aren’t watching. Yes, today and henceforth, I’ll miss the comradery, that lovingly formed, as our paths crossed in life.

But for now, it’s a void; an empty house of brick and wood that used to be a home…..that which will always be our friendship…..

Where The Dogwoods Blossomed

…piece of history dedicated to things that will never change – Severna Park memories


My father bought a project, in a faraway place, around the bay in Maryland. I was three years old. It looked like we were moving out of the big city to a little community where I knew no one. One cold day, I packed my toys and some clothes, disgruntled that I had to move. My life caved. I was moving away from my best friend. I saw little importance of being stuck on a cliff and all the rules that implied.

Unaware of the significance of growing up in a little place called “Round Bay”, my father took on the challenge of remodeling a turn-of-the century covered dance floor on Eagles Nest Point. Sitting on a cliff, overlooking the water, our weekends became filled with hammers and saws. Mom, I remember, wasn’t very happy living on the old wooden floor, so she would cover it with rugs. It wasn’t much to look at, as I recall; just a roof and a floor but my father was planning to turn it into our home.

It took many months to rebuild that old pavilion. The story goes that in the summer, rich people would come to dance the night away overlooking the Severn.

Eventually… trying to make my mother happy, which was never easy, my father, then bought and constructed a house next door. Bless his soul! Most knew it as the “Smith’s”, but it was the “Bick’s” home first.

I guess I was five, when I was the only one to survive going over the cliff, on my tricycle. That was enough for mom! Things were sketchy and not long afterwards, mom and dad split up. My dad left and we moved to our third home on Waters Road in Round Bay. It was perfect because in the interim, my buddy and his family, moved from Randallstown to just down the road.

My good memories are plentiful. On the 4th of July, fire engines would parade through the neighborhood; in December, folks would gather to canvas the community singing Christmas carols; and then there was Yardley’s annual telephone book – which we now wish we’d held on to!

I watched as Round Bay blossomed after 1953. The swimming meets and festivities at Main beach; and boats turning from wood to fiberglass. Just a brief funny memory…. some years later, after mom remarried, My stepfather, Skip and I went to the Eastern Shore. He had a 12 foot row boat built for me for $125.00. Made of spruce, it sank every season until it swelled.

About 7 years old, we moved away from Waters Road. This time, my dad bought a house for mom, my brother and I, on Riggs Avenue in Olde Severna Park. He paid $12,500 in cash. Moving from Sunset Knoll, in Pasadena, we headed back to Severna Park.

Thanksgiving 1958, mom remarried. It was my stepfather, Skip’s birthday. I guess they chose that date so he wouldn’t forget. Confusing times back then… my dad disappeared; I didn’t know why.

Somewhere around 1960, we moved back to Round Bay onto Laurel Rd, right above “dead man’s curve”. My little brother was born in 1962. I was at Bea and Larry Cranes house – great friends of my parents. I’ll never forget when Mrs. Crane came running outside. I was on my bike, and she was yelling, “It’s a boy! It’s a boy! And it’s on my birthday!”. The stupid things you remember…

The Cranes and my stepfather’s family, the Carr’s, played a large part in St. Martin’s in the Field Episcopal Church. Ironically, there silently stood in the vestibule, my dad’s name engraved on the golden shovel.

My dad passed away in ’65 – a terrible loss to any child. Now I commemorate his life. A man with such vision who played an intricate part in the community. Very few know that. Someday, I hope to retrieve the golden shovel. It no longer stands in the entrance of the original church.

Skip, my stepfather, was a great man; one I could say that his reputation preceded him. He started out in real estate in 1958, moving into a little red house up on the hill, behind Dawson’s store. Skip started working for Tommy and Cliff at the age of 14. He helped support his mother after his father passed away. Born in a house on the B&A, outside of Berrywood, there remains a statue to his legacy.

In 1971 or ’72, mom and Skip bought their final home at the water’s edge by the pier. He thought he was getting ripped off, paying that much money for a house. Looking back, I can’t help but laugh. What an investment!

Proudly, I’ve spent a large part of my life as a little piece of Severna Park. I graduated from Severna Park High School in 1969 and was raised in a wonderful environment. This is an honor to share my true story with you, my friends and family…..dogwood blogThis little piece of history is dedicated to the things that will never change, my memories.

 

Keepsakes

..my heart is still loyal to my childhood home


KeepsakeIt’s a rainy 4th. I watch the world majestically turn, at a little table for two, on Main Street. The air is filled with festivities as patriotism runs deep. Some bump into others accidentally, smile, and reply “excuse me”. A little town nestled in the foothills of the Ozarks howls with history. Watching the rain as the sun brightens, it reminds me of summer showers where I grew up; the things you never forget as a kid, in your own hometown, while your wishes and dreams evolve into color. But, the rain makes me wander off, as I’m darn glad I am dry and not stuck out in the middle of a lake, somewhere.

Like the shrouds that chime against a sailboat mast, steadfast, your spirit recalls. The sounds are imbedded in your spirit, like a Christmas carol on the tip of your tongue. I’d open a window and listen, as the boats tossed and turned, in the middle of the night. I tried to sleep but I couldn’t. My dreams were clouded, overcast, as I worried about things that little kids shouldn’t.

While experiencing the pouring rain, I watch, as it washes down the tiny streets and my mind is full of wonder. Where will I be in fifty years? Will I make it, as the competition is fierce?

Looking at lunch, the flies have beat me to it!  I must stop and enjoy the moment, but, my heart is still loyal to my childhood home. I think about you and where you lived. I wonder if you’re still in contact with your closest, oldest friend. Did you marry straight out of school and start a family, or, did you push off to another world, where miles and war were about the same? I can’t help but wonder if you’re okay, complacent with the dreams you had when you were little. I hope so. God knows, you deserve it!

To those who’ve lost in life, my deepest sympathy. God has a purpose for everyone – living or not – we both serve Him. Counting my blessings, I’ll add one more… ‘cause in my happiness, I now have you.

Sitting here, watching it rain……