Monday, June 6, 2016

Lady in Orange

A whirlwind of emotions swept over me. A cyclone of unattached feelings, settling on anger. No, rage. The lady in orange, was discussing something with my Mother. I didn’t understand anything they were talking about, other than that I wasn’t normal. They were trying to figure out the easiest way to fix me. My Mother worked nights, so a meeting like this, was interfering with her sleep. She seemed irritated that the lady in orange needed to explain how to handle the issue. Later, she would tell my Father that the “N*igg*r should have just done her job and not bothered us.”  The lady in orange explained all the details of my learning disabilities. The symptoms, of my falling behind in class was due to dyslexia. I watched as the two of them debated the problem. As I was a problem to be dealt with.

My rage grew as the lady flatly explained the new education program to deal with “special kids” like me. I kicked the metal legs of my chair. My Mother and the lady not hearing me, as I did not exist. They simply discussed the problem. My knuckles, white from gripping the metal chair, my rage finally snapped.  I bolted from my chair, running through the classroom door, and down my school’s main hallway. Only the cool air that hit my face upon exiting the front of the school, stopped tears from flowing.

A vise-like hand suddenly grabbed my arm, swing me around. “What the hell are you doing?!”  My Mother inches away from my face. The smell of Certs on her breath. “You are just talking about me like I don’t matter!” What I was trying to say was that decisions are being made for me, in front of me, but my opinion, my voice, never came to be heard. Her pure white nursing shoes squeaked on the tile as we marched back to the councilor’s office.

I have always avoided situations where it appears others are making decisions for me. Without, of course a simple acknowledgment to my human existence. I always feel as if I am on that cold metal chair my Mother slammed me into, barking a half-hearted apology to the lady in orange.   My rage always builds, and explodes…  wanting to run. Friendships have been tested, supervisors questioned, if the feeling of an arbitrary choice is made on my behalf.

It was the first really hot, summer day in Denver. We were enjoying a street fair in Downtown. The boyfriend and his best-friend wandered ahead of me. I chased the shady spots, as the boyfriend let the sun absorb into his caramel-brown skin. It was more golden. The way the rays of sun danced upon his broad shoulders. They enjoyed the chalk art drawn upon the sidewalks, I enjoyed this beautiful man, whom for some strange reason, chose me.

At the end of the street fair, they kept walking. I tuned in their conversation. Ideas of what to do next being debated. It was casually decided to end our time at the street fair and go grab drinks at a popular bar nearby. They quickened the pace, as my heartbeat sped up. I was eight years old again. Overhearing a plan where I had no say. My fists clenched. Knuckles turning white.  My vision narrowed. If I quickly turned the corner, would I be missed? I felt my Mother’s death grip on my arm. Rage boiled up, turning my face red. “I’m so sorry… what are we doing?” I purposely attempted to stop every word from being dipped in sarcasm.  Feeling like my anger immediately turns me into an uncontrollable, line-crossing asshole. I stopped - - exhaled. I didn’t hear the response that was given me. I instead began to question myself how I could go from worshiping this beautiful boy in front of me to dragging up, and inserting unresolved rage into the situation? It really is why they call it unresolved anger.