But if there's one thing in my life
That these years have taught
It's that you can always see it coming
But you can never stop it.
You sit at my table, you live in my house, you learn in my classroom, you ride in my car, you live on my street, whatever it is--I don't let people go all the way. I just don't. Even if they let go of me. I still think and pray and hope.
A text tonight: Sally, they took my son. From Troy. One of my people. Even though all the "even thoughs".
I called him and we talked, but he's bad at maintaining a personal narrative of his life. Details and timelines are not his strength. But there was a visit from a social worker last night that must not have gone well. He didn't even know there was an investigation. The state came to school today and placed his son in foster care. Troy said a social worker told him he may be charged with child abuse. And that there were three open cases about their family. I don't even know enough to know what any of that means. But I think it means he's fucked. I hope that child lands softly.
Thinking about that summer, sitting on my porch with him, with a lot of success under his belt. It had been a great summer. He and his son were great together. He was saving money. He was starting to fix things. There was hope when he moved on.
But dysfunctional, toxic, dangerous relationships involving children and mutual dependency are hard to walk away from. And when you have nightmares all the time and can't read people and have no boundaries and are filled with grief and rage from your own history of abuse, well, you have so many needs and so few skills you wind up caught up in a cycle that cannot be broken on your own. You have no bootstraps to pull yourself up by.
And then you wind up turning into the sort of person who gave you the nightmares in the first place.
I lay back on my porch floor, my phone resting on my chest, staring up
at the negative space between the leaves of the oak tree in my front