The Little One in the form of an Owl...(but don't tell her I said that!)

February 2, 2012

Are You Afraid of the Dark?

"Goddess Brigit inspires, empowers and encourages us to express our Truth through our purpose.  She offers assistance in releasing and transcending fears; self-limiting patterns and unhealed energy, helping us to feel protected and supported through any and all aspects of self-expression and communication."
Who is Goddess Brigit

          The night ended on a funny note as far as Truth telling goes (in Uganda "funny" more often refers to disturbing, uncomfortable, unnatural, wrong. But in Uganda, we have no negative feelings-no wait, we have no words for negative feelings): I was snuggled up to the Little One- we were both reveling in the peace and love and nurturing that occurred between us and within us today; plus I was feeling quite ill (either Malaria again, or tooth gone rot-most likely both-but surely not throat cancer...?!?) 
          I was sick and she was sick of the ghosts that have been hampering her dreams and evening hours. Silly little children's fear, right? Not to this proud heathen.  There's definitely some superstitious happenings that have been going on in the last few days; individually, each of us have felt...invaded (even as I write this I hear her whispering in her sleep and the feeling of a real conversation occurring in front of my blind eyes is making my mama-bear fur stand on end). 
         So we were snuggled, and what begun as scary ghost stories turned into giggling real life stories that were far scarier than the idea of astral-travelling evil relatives and a recently passed mother's protection:

             "Aunty please sleep with me!! When you sleep with me, I'm so comfortable."
             "You're comfortable when you sleep with anyone."

"Yes, that's true."

              This introduction led to the topic of the very few men that were listed on the "it's okay to sleep with" list. This in turn led to the topic of why other men were not okay to sleep with. This topic was disturbingly led by the little one:

             "But I don't want some man, you know, kissing me, ewww gross!"

             "Why would a man want to kiss a little girl? (please, please, please say you just heard from so and so that such and such)

             She leans in like an wise owl schooling a naive little chickadee, "You knowww, in Uganda...heh...there are men who kiss. littlechildren.

             I try to re-assert my authority on the subject, proclaiming my vast understanding of the evils of pedophilia. "Yes I know, those men are everywhere. They are very very sick and bad.

             "Yes, I know." She looks at me trying to asses if I am worldly enough to handle what comes next; and I'm fairly sure I am not but will attempt to fake it.  "Let me tell you..." 

            What comes next is a play by play account of the cancer-stricken man who lived across the street from her and her mother's apartment, the women (and girls) who frequented his home, and the group of little girl's who avidly stalked him in order to report back to authorities-guess who was their leader...
              In the first episode, she'd witnessed said man approach a "beautiful, half-naked" woman walking down the street, propositioned her, led her back to his house, and had some sort of...relations with said woman (I could not lie there and let her try and describe what she did not understand, I had to insert..."gross things?" to stifle my mental freak-out), the most scandalous being he reached over her and stuck his hand in her..."what is this they wear? bla? As IF wanting to TOUCH her breast!" We both looked at each perplexed and disturbed by this possibility (well I was disturbed by the fact that this conversation was happening, but there it is). I got a comic relief from my disquiet when she explained her return home:

         "So I ran home and my heart was just beating: UH-HEH, UH-HEH..." she pants heavily, demonstrating, rolling on the bed, closing her eyes with hand to little chest. "Mummy asked me what happened and I couldn't even talk...I just lied there until I was asleep"

         Part 2, according to her, was the "not so scary" episode, involving a child, who judging by the height she indicated was about 2 or 3 years old, but considering her heroic escape, "she was a clever gal", she sounds more like Jackie Chan aged 35. Though I was too curious to know if she actually stayed and watched the whole episode above, this time I begged for her to cease and desist, I was SCARED, this was too REAL.  She denied my request-welcome to the big girls club:

         "And now he brings home a young gal, and he says 'take off your dress' but she was a clever gal and she says 'no! why should I?!' and he says, 'so I can give you medicine', so the gal took off one dress but she had one on underneath." 
          And the man gets angry, and he shouts at her, she hits him, he shakes her, she kicks him and runs out of the house. 
         "When I saw her kick him I thought, eh! this is a clever gal. I told myself then that if anyone tried to kiss me, I would kick them just like that gal. So when she came running, for us, we called her, 'eh come, come!' And I said, 'wow, clever gal, good job'. And she screamed, 'RUN, Ruuuuunnnn, don't stay here!!' And then she just...ehhh-started crying and shaking like what."

        Mind you understand, though her mother had not given express consent to these...investigations (I hope, I hope, I sincerely hope) Each of these episodes (I will assume they were more and it was only her mercy for me that made her end her tales) were immediately reported back in detail to her mother, and the response was more to confirm what a bad man he was, than to try to heal or reinstate the innocence of her child.   

        This is not a story of trauma, this is a story of communication and it's to POWER:  Are you afraid of the dark?  I know I am.  But don't let the dark know; tell it to go to hell.  You got an evil-witch sending you bad dreams? Sing a child's song about how stupid she is to make you think of your biggest fear-losing the ones you belong to...again.  If there are dirty men in the world and you know too much about it, make a list of all the men you feel safe with, and torture your Aunty with a scary fairy-tale. After all she's there with you, and the dark is not as powerful as her warmth and her love.

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