zOmBiEs ...***WARNING: Triggers (and zombies)***

C. E. (Chase Eric)

Administrator
Staff member
..............Zombies

You were the big boy I picked as my big brother
.......And you picked me, too. 'cuz let's face it - who wouldn't? :)

We had the kind of love that we were supposed to have
.......Not kissy and stuff - you know just love

You aren't even supposed to say the word love. It's love but it's not, because
.......it's really just catching frogs and talking about girls
..............and playing 5-3-1 hoops

It's riding bikes in the mud and rafting down the creek like Tom and Huck - like we used to do.
.......It's rocking the boat and we all fall in with our clothes on
..............and then swim after turtles

It's doing stupid things like cannonballing next to old ladies who sit and dangle their legs
.......in the pool with rubber flowers in their caps

You were my big brother and I loved you but I didn't LOVE you - I mean you know that. Right?
.......But then the zombie crept in and screwed you up so bad.

He started to live in you and your eyes got milky and dead
.......You were in there but I couldn't find you and you wanted things you wouldn't want
..............so I knew it had to be a zombie

It was like I talked to you but I wasn't sure if you were answering
.......Or that stupid zombie.

The zombie made me do it but I swear I didn't want to - but he said you really needed it
.......I would do anything for you but suddenly I was doing stuff for the zombie
..............He was tricky

He pleaded, so I finally said okay. Everything had to come off. God I'm such a jerk. Face down. Face hell. Stop tensing.
.......I felt the zombie on me in me knowing me like a hand in a puppet I'm embarrassed and nothing felt right he hurt me! and the whisper in my ear
......................................................................was not yours

He smelled like your acne scrub - so I thought you were near but I couldn't see you with me facing hell and all
.......So I talked deeply - past him, to you. I thought you might hear me and stop him...
..........................................................................But you didn't

So I did what I had to do. Every stupid thing he wanted. Everything I COULD EVERYTHING I COULD I could die i could just die i could... i.... i....
.......He got so lost in me that i got lost in him and where are you anyways?

Were you watching us? Didn't you know what he was doing to me? Why you didn't stop him? didn't you hear me cry?
.......i couldn't say no so that meant yes so i surrendered and became a zombie, too.

My body danced with his and told him lies. i died right there in his hands did you feel me die?
.......zombies don't love, they just fuse. it isn't love. it's just yes.

The last thing i saw as i floated away from us forever was two zombies.
.......i looked down and i swear to God they looked just like us

But i wasn't there. Those were just naked, empty zombies. and you never found me again.
.......i was a million miles away
..............on mars
...............................alone
.......................................forgetting you
.
.......................................................
forgetting me


_________________________________

I struggled with whether I should add this spoiler. It's such a personal piece and the meanings a reader distills from it - even if unintended by me as the writer - can be equally personal. The smaller part of any art is in how it is crafted; it is much more about how it is seen. But this is not an art site. It is a healing site. And so I thought it appropriate to write what follows - especially for those who may be struggling with what this piece is about.

I channeled my inner kid for this piece. My molester died two weeks ago. I went to his funeral. The funny thing about funerals is that people always find the nicest darned things to say. In his case, all those nice things that were said spoke of a person I had forgotten about - a person I once fell in love with like a big brother. That equation changed when he was about 15 and I was 12 - when the zombie took over.

It hit me at the funeral that the ashes in the box in front of us marked his second death. Zombies addresses his first. The adult I am spoke to it differently in Eulogy. Both are saying the same thing, I suppose. Eulogy came first. I needed to share my own words with him, and so I wrote a silent eulogy and folded it in my shirt pocket next to my heart during the service. After the funeral, this just welled up out of me from nowhere. Its intensity speaks to some deeper truths - among them the realization that at the tender age of 12, I was essentially mourning that "first death." I suppose there was no way I would have the perspective to understand what was also dying in me - my childhood, my innocence (whatever that is), my ability to trust, and ultimately the trust relationships I sure could have used growing up. What I did know at twelve were only what my five senses and my heart told me. And so this is a raw, frank and rather explicit piece.

Not to get academic, but there are a few themes worth mentioning...

Love. This piece at its essence deals with a child struggling to find the meaning of love. The definition may have proven elusive, but towards the end that child can at least say what he knows love is not. Love is not in acceding. It is not in a yes because there was no option for a no. The theme is also found in the simple decision that one makes to believe in the power of love - even when he cannot fully define it. It was a decision that secured me as his victim, I suppose. But it also defined me as being his opposite. And to me, survival has not been about getting in touch with my anger. It has been about staying close to my heart.

Good vs. Evil. I talk about my abuser as essentially possessed. That is precisely how I saw it at the time. After the funeral, that really hit me all over again when his family spoke of a person I forgot about - a person who was once the greatest guy in the world. Where did he go? Some may read this and wonder why I didn't run from him. But the kid I was believed with all his heart in goodness - that our better natures can prevail over darker spirits. I guess I was a true child of Disney. But the struggle between hope and darkness ends tragically.

Separation. The piece is full of separations. The molester separates from the better person he is. The child separates from his own body - and ultimately from the friendship he worked so hard to save. Everything separates. And the irony is that even the sexual connection was just another separation, which actually defines the paradox of molestion. It amputates us from others, from the world around us, from our potentials, from joy and openness, and so many times from ourselves. We end up with an adulthood of broken pieces built upon a broken foundation. It is at its essence a experience of endless separations. But there is one thing that never separated. The last word of this piece - and the last word in my survival - is that when all else was lost, I was alone with the one thing that mattered most.
 

Tom E.

Registrant
Very very heavy, very real, I can understand the intensity of your feelings, & the shutting down of them later. What sadness & betrayal & a kind of death inside. I'm sorry you had to experience all of that .. how a friendship became diseased, or twisted & warped.
 

Ceremony

Moderator
Staff member
Like Tom E. I see that journey. To me, it is very well written to explain the complexity of how circumstances shape reality. I can see the "Eulogy" much better, and it was difficult until you wrote this. My things get in the way... and seeing through others eyes is so important to me.

Blessing.
 

C. E. (Chase Eric)

Administrator
Staff member
I spoke with a friend yesterday who suggested I link this to Eulogy. They both say the same thing in a way - and he suggested they are essentially companion pieces. Eulogy is the voice of the reasoned adult I am, while this poem is the voice of the boy I was. We are both trying to make sense of this mess, I suppose, in the wake of the death of my molester. This was precisely how I made sense of the situation I was in at the time. Some might dismiss it as a poem about zombies - and zombies aren't "real." But I wonder if I have ever written anything as emotionally honest as this.

Frankly, I have seriously questioned - and still do I suppose - whether any of this resonates with others here. Even my sister - who was a victim - has no problem using the word hate to describe her feelings. I wish I had that simple purity of feeling. Who struggles with love for the person who raped them? Who else might not be offended at the very notion? My hate for him is all mixed up and diluted in a wash of what was once love. And I'm swimming in that now - looking for a gentle shore.

A note about this poem - I stared writing about something else really - just trying to sort out my feelings and emotions through the keyboard as I always do - and this just started to take shape. It really wrote itself. This is about as close to my heart as I've gotten in a while. Thank you all for being so supportive.
 
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Free Radical

Registrant
Chase eric,

I have no feelings of hate or anger toward my abuser... My brother sexually molested me, but my dad verbally and physically and emotionally abused both of us... So even at an early age I understood that he was hardly at fault... Only just so at fault maybe...

Today I see that the sexual abuse drove my dad's abuse and alienation of me even deeper than it could have gone otherwise...but I don't really fault my brother.. One could hardly say that I love him in a close and personal way...but we relate like brothers... I know how confusing that is...to feel a connection with in stead of hate for my abuser is hard to explain and even hard to accept.. I too wish I could feel anger and hate, but I don't have it in me to hate a guy who was victimized by the same man I was... So whatever..hopefully that makes sense.

FR
 

KMCINVA

Registrant
Chase Erick

I have no vengeance for the abuser or those that tormented, rather I feel sorry they could be so destructive and heartless. Sadly, I think the one I most hate is myself. I have accepted what he did to me, but what I did to him during the abuse is hard for me to accept as being part of the abuse. The oral activities I participated in haunt me. I hear the words of many it was not my fault but why did I continue to return and why didn't I bite it off and end the abuse? I had opportunity but did not avail myself to the opportunity to escape. It troubles me and the doctor believes this is what is holding me back to free myself from him. He says with this guilt and my exhaustion I am spiraling to a very unsafe place. He asked me do I despise the abuser and I said no. Not sure why I have this ambivalence toward him or those that tormented me in life to bring him back.

I guess we all look at our situations differently despite being the "victim" of others perversions. I think, I some how believe I picked him after he picked me. I did not willing pick up but my actions tell me some part of me wanted to be picked.

Thank you for sharing.

Kevin
 

C. E. (Chase Eric)

Administrator
Staff member
Thank you, oic, FR and Kevin -

I have read everything you posted but only have time right now to address one and that is Kevin. Please don't hate yourself. I went too far down that road myself for allowing it, sometimes going back for it.

This is what I have learned. You should be proud that you were wired for love and not for hate. I suspect it was not in your nature to respond to him by being anything other than what was inside of you all along.

Like flowers plucked by a thief and placed in a vase, it is in their nature to remain beautiful and offer sweet fragrance to the thief who does not deserve them. That the flower did not turn rancid does not indicate complicity in its own theft.

Mark Twain said something similar...

Forgiveness is the fragrance the violet sheds on the heel that has crushed it.

Celebrate that you were a violet and do not regret that you were not a heel. Because it is not about what is deserved. It is about the nature of things. You should be proud of your nature. The shame belongs to your thief.
 

KMCINVA

Registrant
Eirik

Thank you for your words. It is difficult because at times I am happy with myself and I realize during these times the abuse and torment are not in my mind. Once thoughts of the abuse and triggers enter, then my sense of self is lost, a sense of worthlessness takes over transcending to hating myself. I know when I am moving into this phase of life, but I cannot stop it. It takes something or someone to pull me out but that is becoming harder and harder.

I appreciate you sharing your experience but I think I am overwhelmed at this time, trying to think straight, trying to see hope, trying to have dreams. I think the discussions and exposure of the abuse to the Diocese has taken a toll and I hope time will heal. I never truly expect anything from the Diocese for they are judge and jury as well as perpetrator of the abuse but I expected more from myself, to feel free by sharing and exposing but it has not turned out that way. Maybe it is the rawness of what I disclosed that needs to mend. I am not sure for I do want to love myself always because when I do, life seems good. Those times continue to evaporate and more time is filled with the demons of the past. I know no one but myself can help me because I can only change how I think and feel about myself and to put those that tormented and abused me in a place that does not harm me anymore. It all sounds so simple, I think I am understanding and then all is lost and I backpedal.

The past week and a half was filled with many challenges emotional and psychologically and dissociatively (if that is a word). Knocked the wind out of my sail.

I am reflecting on your words, trying to come up with a mantra that I can use to affirm the love of myself. I have not yet found one but will continue to try.

Thank you

Kevin
 

C. E. (Chase Eric)

Administrator
Staff member
Thanks, Kevin. It sounds like we are walking the same rough patches. I walk beside you.

OiC, empathy and forgiveness have always come more naturally to me than anger. I failed a goal in therapy - to get in touch with my anger. Years later, I truly have come to believe that it's simply not there by either defect or just my character. I know the mantra that anger is healthy to experience, but I had to choose a different road. And while i don't judge that anger is any better or worse than empathy, the latter has allowed me to have a dialog and get much needed answers. And interestingly enough, i have discovered in those discussions that the anger of my abuser's father was a huge factor in the perpetuation of my abuse. My abuser never got the help he really needed because punishment was more important than understanding.

FR, we do think the same. It is not only harder to feel anger for someone who had also been victimised but also inappropriate and unproductive - at least in my opinion. My abuser was not victimized sexually. But he was victimized when he was caught and no one gave him the tools to deal with it. The father of the guy who did it indulged himself in a rant instead of trying to help him stay off of me.

I don't have time right now, but I'll probably follow up with a Cliff Notes spoiler on this piece. I question if most people can relate much to it.
 
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C. E. (Chase Eric)

Administrator
Staff member
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(((Eirik)))
I have no words. It's heartbreaking that it changed into that. You had every reason to expect it to come back, for him to snap out of it. What you had before certainly seems worth hoping for it's return.
 

Tom E.

Registrant
This poem hurts, it's so sad.. I teared up & that's good. When friends betray you..it just really makes you feel worthless.
 
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