life giving words at nautilus teachings

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“wait til’ your father get’s home…”
So I waited
What was supposed to happen?
Was he the magic man?
I peered out from the keyhole
In my bedroom
I watched
I listened
No words
Just the marching of my two toe headed brothers
Down the steps and over his knee
Night
After
Night
After
Night
“wait til your father get’s home?”
Was I next?
No
He never came to me
He spanked the boys
Retreated to the kitchen for his late dinner
And I fell asleep
Crying
Yearning
For him to come to me
Hold me
And promise
To keep them away from me
To give my mother the power
To punish
To let her have a voice
I wanted to him to be for me
What my mother called him
“her knight in shining armor”
“get me a beer sher, and take a sip to make sure it’s good”
Ah summer
My dad was home more
He laughed in the summer
He worked outside in the yard
He would sweat, drink water from the hose
And when he was done
He would sit upon the ground
And call for me to
Get him that beer
I love this memory because
Always
Always
When I did this
He smiled
And me
I
Smiled
Back
In this small gesture
I knew I was loved

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Even though he was a man of few words
No words, just a nod and a smile
From my grandfather who I loved so much
He was hard of hearing
And would come for dinner once a week
My brothers would always pull pranks on him
And it hurt him, I could tell
I liked to sit upon his lap
We didn’t speak he just smiled and nodded his head
He smelled like sweat and cigarettes
And his silence was nourishing to my cornered soul
“you are worthless, you have nothing to give…”
And that is the nice version
Of what echoed in my head
For years and years
It stuck to me like glue
It rolled over my spirit
And washed away all hope
That I was not a mistake in this world
It made me angry
Resentful
Weak

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And then came the words
“are those Christmas palms?”
Funny, I know
But these were from the man
Who would become my husband
I tried to avoid him
And would run into the house when I saw his car
Never look at him as I drove by
Until one day he “caught me”
All the ugly words rolled
Out of my head for a moment
And I thought
“maybe I am worth loving”
Words
Are
Life
Giving
And
Soul
Taking
I can be hurt
More by words
Than by a punch
Because the bruise heals
And the words
Stay
I have not had many powerful words of advice
In my life
But I can tell you
When my husband says to me
“hey blondie, I am so proud of you”
Or my son says
“way to go mom”
And my annie writes
“I have never seen you happier,
Mom, I am so proud of you.”
And my baby girl writes
“I am so glad you are my mom, thank you”
Those words
Make
Me
whole

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