verbal abuse changes us at nautilus teachings

pick a safety hue
pick a safety hue

1970’s-“Harriet Cooper eats her pooper…”and so begins my average day. The verbal abuse starts around the time the physical abuse stops. Although the name calling has been going on for a while now, the verbal abuse now starts. I am 9. The cruelty and harshness of the words did not just float me right back into my rich oceanic world, but begins in me the need to release in writing the conflicting, confusing and sometimes unthinkable thoughts that have begun meandering around my head. I know my thoughts are wrong; therefore, putting pen to paper is difficult. It is also a great release for the agony brewing inside of me.
I take a can of light pink paint and drip a dime size dollop of red paint in the center of the can. At first it does nothing accept sit like a thorn. Waiting a few seconds,. the hues begin to mix and join to form new tints of pink. Moving the paint stick in a spiral working my way towards the outside edges of the can, the paint takes on a new color and it changes.
Is fascinating to me.
all the imaginable adventures
each color
will take me.
If I continue to move
the paint stick
in circular motions
the original color
will transform permanently,
just like what their verbal abuse
does to me
I’m stupid
I’m ugly
I’m adopted
I smell
Over and over
It rings in my
I cover my ears
In hopes
The silence
Will remind me
That I am safe
And full
Of God’s love.

The verbal abuse becomes my reds and oranges in my paintings. Verbal abuse makes me feel worthless and small, just like a tiny dot. If I am going to feel like a dot I am going to start painting them. I will paint in thousands of tiny dots in turtle greens and browns, or in dolphin blues and purples. Each dot encircled with the black ring of safety.
I believe I am a worthless human being and a waste of space. I do not blend in with them. Instead I repel them like oil to water. The verbal abuse I suffer forms in my mind that this is how a boy should treat you. You should be subservient to them, wait on them hand and foot and never disappoint them, that abuse is the natural way a man and woman communicate. I am going to have to become a chameleon. It will be necessary for me to expand my palette to include shades of grey, tan and blush.
Let me fall
Let me fall
Let me fall
Into the darkness
So that I can crawl
Out of the abyss
Of the life that I know
I am tired of carrying
The burdens they know
Denial is strong
Betrayal runs deep
I can bet you today
They never loose sleep
Over who they have hurt
Over what they have done
Sympathy for them?
I have none!
I heard it
I felt it
You knew you were wrong
But you made me believe
I never belonged
You put it on me
You made me feel sick
I hid in corners
You both are such dicks
You hurt me
You hurt me
I hate you so
I want you to leave
I need you to go
Say goodbye to mom
And forget your dad
Your two are the demons
They wish they never had
I am falling
Into darkness
I need to feel whole
If you wanted to damage me
Well, you reached your goal
So fuck you
Fuck him
Your both are a mess
To say you are my brothers
Is a sin to confess
Yes I hate you
I don’t pity you
I want to scream
I want to run fast
From my life’s scary dream…
”Sky blue
royal blue
and azure seas
the calmness
and singing
of the immense ocean
the calling
I hear
in the midnight
black sky
all lull me
to peaceful
vigilant sleep…”
These are the words which encompass my 4’ x 4’ canvas. I am in need of assurance that I will be alright. The color blue represents peace, warmth and love to me. Any where or place I am, I can call on this color to pull me from suffocation and fear. I need this to hang as a reminder that I am supposed to be here, that I am good, and kind. I need this to breathe life into my tired and weary body. The long lines of paint stretching one side to the other in hues of blue sit relaxed, open, waiting for me to rest. I am awash in Shades of Blue from my nose, to my t-shirt and jeans, all the way to the tips of my toes. I step back and know for sure that I am wearing the calm, the hug of God.

saved by blue and God
saved by blue and God