Turn Around! He's Going To Kill You!

Not the words you'd expect to hear in a school playground, especially when you are only 8, and even more so when they are being screamed at you.

Those last few words seemed to flow from the mouth in slow motion and distorted in sound. I stared at his terrified face as he willed me with all his soul.

As I turned, Baxter was pulling back his arm ready to thrust his home-made kniife into my stomach. Instinctively, I arched my body forwards in an effort to pull my stomach away from the weapon and as I did so, brought down my right fore-arm in a chopping motion to deflect his thrust. Our two wrists clashed and the knife had changed direction into thin air but still in his grasp. Screams were piercing the block in which other kids were skipping and playing normal games, everyone stopped, frozen and horrified.

I managed to create some space between me and Baxter, I looked in his eyes and at such an early age believed I was witnessing a body possessed, a lost kid, a terribly broken and yet avengful soul who stared back with hatred and purpose. He paused to re-evaluate his next move, he wanted blood so bad. I was a fanatical Bruce Lee fan and remember a scene in 'Enter the dragon' - 'concentrate', I said to myself, soft but firm stance, 'use his energy against him, he's coming at you again'

I breathed, a tear in my eye momentarily blurred my vision, "my God, he wants to kill me" shock was already setting in, but I had to be Bruce Lee, just concentrate. I quickly wiped my eyes, he began to move forward as if his plan were complete. He pulled the knife back and held it in a way that suggested he would try to deceive me of it's intended target and foil my defences, he wanted me to believe he was going for my face and then switch to anywhere he could find an opening.

I waited until the last second and swung a round house kick to his left knee, I heard the crunch, even though the knife was in his hand still my confidence doubled in a milli second. Slow motion returned. As he went down, his wrist tried to force the issue and I blocked him with my left arm, he was done from here. Our feud was over... for now.

Baxter was not a pretty sight after I had finished with him. My rage unleashed blows that had a deep message in every one of them, messages that had been building up for years, and as I look back today, it was violence and rage I had learned from home, from dad and from 'Tony's gang' - a group of local teenagers that fought below their weight and if you were female? so what.

The night I first experienced serious violence was when I was 5. Dad went upstairs to have a bath and said I could sit in this new armchair which he used to smoke his pipe in, this was a privilage indeed. The open lit fire crackled softly on a perfect Sunday's winter evening, safe and warm. He used to make us laugh when he stood from it and release foul sounding farts and then blame it on one of us.

After about 20 mins I wanted to be funny too. I went upstairs and knocked on the bathroom door......."Daddy, guess what?" he grumbled something, "I just did a fart in your chair" I giggled as I heard the bath water stir and footsteps moving toward the door. He opened it and with a white towel wrapped around his waist and water dripping from his hairy nipples down to his pot belly, he looked at me and within a second I was suspended in air. His two hands picked me up by one of my arms and walked me down the corridor and kicked fully open the half closed door to my bedroom. The door rebounded back and he kicked it open again.

"Daddy?" I said confused and scared. Thump! He threw me two to three metres across the dark room and into the base of the bunkbed. He came over, tranced with rage, picked me up under my under arm - this time he only used one hand. Thump! aginst the desk and a loud noise in my head echoed and my ears were hurting. He raised his arm and smacked me backhandedly across the face and then punched my arm. Almost done he wanted to finish off with a real lesson and threw me hard against the wall and screamed "now get into bed you little ****."

I can't remember if I cried. I lay on the bottom bunk, curled up with my eyes wide open and lips shaking. "But he's my dad, I must have deserved it" I thought. He and mum are my world, what if they leave me now? what will I do?

This fear hung over me til the day I moved out at 15. This fear made me stronger. I had no choice. In a book by Pia Melody 'Facing co-dependence' she talks about the 5 core values we are all born with and one of them is vulnerabilty. She says that if any of those five values are abused then there is pretty much a blueprint laid out for us and is waiting in the welcoming room of life to unfold.

For me my, one of my core values - vulnerability was so badly abused, it would lead me to do anything and everything to become invulnerable. This would lead to verbal and physical outbursts in defense, substance use to help me forget, depression and anxiety attacks and little chance of holding down a steady job, oh and relationships may prove challenging to say the least...........All of the above was me and would be for the next 30 odd years.

As parents, we hold our kids future in our hands. Not what we do so much, but how we do it. Punishment is one thing, violence is another. I began to display behaviour consistent with Pia's book and as early as age 6. I blamed myself for everything that was going wrong in this little boy's life and everything I loved would be destroyed for they too must be punished. I took an axe to my brand new push bike because I couldn't change the tyre. I killed birds with my older brothers air gun because birds were free, why should they be?

The path to recovery took many twists and turns and it was only after my second marriage breakdown I realised it was in fact me that had a problem, it wasn't after all the rest of the world. Yes, It was me.... but it wasn't my fault.

Next update.... "Mum, do you have cancer?"

jagacafad jagacafad
41-45, M
Aug 1, 2010