Abortion stinks. Its the worst thing.
The Lord tells us we are “fearfully and wonderfully made.” (Psalm 139:14–1.)
My mother didnt respect this.
She blamed me for her ectopic pregnancy when I was 5 years old. Or, that was what it felt like. She went to the hospital for it on my 5th birthday, and fell into a slump after that. Then, she had my sister when I was in third grade and left me behind.
Then, when I was 24 and struggling in the Boston area after college they moved me here to the Berks/Lehigh Valley area, we are on this weird cusp of two three-county areas, a weird little no-mans land on the edge of Berks County and Lehigh and Lehigh County.
And, from here, 35 years ago, less than a year before they moved here to SE PA from ultra Suburban New Jersey a 1/2 hour south of Manhattan, the family base of 22 years, THEY WERE STRUGGLING; and they put me at Wernersville State Hospital (in Berks County.) 3 and a half decades later I am figuring out what happened to me.
I met my husband, had a child, and lived in the Tampa Bay Area of South Florida for 21 years without knowing who I was.
I moved back up here to this same area in PA to my fathers house after the divorce in Florida in 2012; and I am slowly picking up the pieces.
What I am seeing about my mother and the state hospital here is about the smoking, an issue which is so serious for me that it was commented in the Harvard undergraduate newspaper, The Crimson.
As “President” of the undergraduate literary magazine, the “Harvard Advocate,” I was having serious difficulties and it was so bad it got into the newspaper when a young woman who prided herself on being a reporter hurt me really badly by capturing my “over-smoking” in the “Crimson,” the undergraduate newspapermen. I didnt really know what she was saying and I still dont now. I had asked for non-smoking roommates going into Freshman Year and it was just surreal how weird that was and how that that played out. Because I was smoking 3 packs a day over my fathers sexual abuse over the New Years holiday Senior Year.
I was aware that my father took hold of roommate Sally in some way upon meeting her in our room during Freshnan Week; her father was a West Coast, Silicon Valley telecommunications industry leader and more or less the boss of my father, a Bell Labs man.
I knew something went down there and, once again, I still dont know what.
Through the CONTINUING PSYCH malpractice in my life life over 38 years I have been kept in the dark. A woman who was my mothers age and close to my mother in NJ and stayed in touch with her after the move here from NJ asked her for the contact to the CHILD PSYCHIATRIST I had been referred to by the Psychologist who had led me to crack up back inNew Jersey before their move to PA and mine to PA from Boston.
That sounds a little confusing and it was.
IT WASNT WORKING OUT with that psychologist when she did that to me. Through my mothers friend continuing to see MY PSYCHIATRIST I was mortgaged to this psychologists failure with me FOR DECADESF!!!
It was all designed to keep me in the dark about the “breast-touching” (my fathers words) when I was 17. I realized just now, today, that they were saying I WANTED TO SKEEP WITH HIM! Because he used to talk about writer John Cheever saying his daughter wanted to sleep wirh him. This WAS NEVER THE CASE WITH MY FEELINGS TOWARDS MY FATHER.
It was the opposite. I had a feeling of distaste for him. Because of HOW HE MISTREATED ME. LIKE I WAS NOTHING. I had my own ego. That incident left me queered because it was a sudden red alert about my own deficient sexuality, which had already been called out on a situatuon at Kent School regarding “breast touching” which, naturally, he didnt know anything about. And I am not going to go into it here because its PERSONAL.
Just as suddenly as I am realizing RIGHT NOW the meaning of that moment —my FATHERS breast-touching–that I could never get. It wasnt MY FATHER giving me the parts I needed to go to Harvard; it was God.
That I had to go there as a runaway because of my “Rasselas” (essay by British Majorir Writer Samuel Johnson) style personal essay in my college application about running away from home and that I stayed there through the men who I had sex with because of the pimp at the New York Port Authority saw me through there as the whore my father made of me.
Through my sexual injury, I remained chaste. I didnt get any pleasure out of sex.
Other than with my husband; who is Alex. Who is in Florida. Who needs to be here.
So, about my mother and the smoking and the ectopic pregnancy and the state hospital.
She fed me cartons of cigarettes there and she didnt have to. In fact, it was SERIOUSLY WRONG that she did.
As I came here towrite, I pictured that locking me up with cigarettes like that was like ridding me from her womb and similarly poisoning my future children.
So, 2 of them–my children–died from easily available legal abortion, which my family strenuously supported; becayse I was too sick with the psych meds, psych wards and cigarettes to be able have the baby. Or, at the time, I didnt have the religious faith that I needed to make a good decision and there wasnt a doctor in town who would see me because of my moral condition. i was completely isolated from old friends and associations through my stay at the state hospital.
For instance, it is likely I would have had a miscarriage, I was just so sick.
And my family just didnt care.
So, recently, I have turned over a new leaf. Through humility, I was able to see the terrible rude tone in my speech. It has become slowly apparent to me how this rude and negative tone and content has run through my behavioral, relational, conversational, writerly and other conveyances. And that I have been carrying rhis crap with me all of these years; and to rid it from my closet.
I have it instead, about the “paradigm shift.”
That is what I have figured out. It is EVETYTHING.
The paradigm shift is about “rewriting my life.” After my parents move here from New Jersey, the doctor and psychologist here said, after the first time after I got out of the state hospital for the first time, that I needed to rewrite my life, and, of course, writing was one of my main issues, I had trouble with it! They didnt know what they were saying to me!
So, over the years, I did. I LEARNED HOW to write; AND HOW TO LIVE. I finally grasped the concept of the “paradigm shift.” i figured that that sounded intelligent and applicable and it really was! Through finally understanding the move from New Jersey, I am finally able to see this. The shift was from the Boston/NY axis to Buffalo/PA.
With that, everything falls into place and I am picking up the pace again.
Here, done, now.
Thats me, tonight, as promised: a phoenix arising from the asshes…