Saturday, February 07, 2009

A Dummy

I didn’t really get a good look. But I saw enough to surmise that it was not happy. “This is my inner child,” David told us. He slid his long-sleeved thermal shirt up his arm to reveal the most solemn tattoo I think I have ever seen. It looked like a small, lost boy, a child version of the tinman. David explained that it doesn’t represent the tinman: he didn’t have a heart. It is an old fashioned mannequin. A DUMMY. I was at a lost for words, so I didn’t say anything. Then I realized…

If he hadn’t wanted us to see it, he wouldn’t have pulled his sleeve up. If he didn’t want to talk about it, he wouldn’t have brought it up. If David didn’t want us to know that the tattoo on his upper arm held such meaning, he wouldn’t have said what he did…

“When I was a kid, I always felt so dumb. As far back as I can remember, I have felt unworthy.” and he started to cry. I have never seen David cry over his condition. I have seen him cry for making his family suffer. But I haven’t seen him cry for himself. Now if you know David, you know that he was anything but dumb. He was handsome and brimming with personality. In elementary he was #1 in the state for his age in racing BMX. He played guitar and drums really well. He could draw and surf and anything else he wanted to do. Everybody loved David; except David. We never saw signs of this until we found out he was getting high. I think he was 16 by then and drugs were tightening their grip, driving his will, further defining his self-image.

I can’t remember exactly what was said after that. But it was great; whatever it was. I do recall asking if he knew when he started feeling like a dummy and he said yes. I asked if he knew what had happened to bring on his feelings of worthlessness and he said yes. He assured us that he would tell us more one day. We continued to talk for four hours.

When I was finally alone after a four hour drive home, I cried harder than I can remember crying. I had a lot of questions for God. I was so angry. I was grieving for the little boy who I knew in my gut had been violated. Where had God been? The next morning God gave the gentlest answer to my emotional chaos. If you read Feb 1st entry for Streams in the Desert, you will understand. Five days later I would ask David how he isn’t angry at God. His answer humbled me. I will share that with you soon.

1 comment:

Danny said...

Good post, hon. Please post that tat pic for all to see. It's a powerful image.