When they are small it’s so easy to
kiss away boo-boos,
Wipe soggy tears,
And dab ointment on cuts and bruises.
A mother’s salve.
But time changes all that.
And pains become immeasurable.
My words cannot erase the hurt
of treacherous laughter
and taunting betrayal.
My heart aches inside me.
I want so to help.
Instead I remain outside his fortress,
Unable to soothe.
Ill-equipped to protect him from the child warriors
who rage at the walls of his porcelain ego.
We are both wearied from battle.
“Don’t give up,” I manage to eke out the words
like a fallen soldier,
desperate to embolden the barely breathing comrade by my side.
“You will win in the end.”
He tries to believe me.
The corner of his mouth curls just enough
to tell me he’s not ignoring me.
And then silence.
We drive on through the night
His fresh wounds bleeding.
My scabs ripped open to
once again remember the agony of childhood.
Don’t mean to depress anyone. But this is where I’ve been living this past week. So many good, kind parents have no idea that their children are viciously tormenting others. Please, talk to your kids about bullying. Teach them that cruelty wounds deeply and childhood scars can last lifetimes. Even if you’re certain it’s “not your kid,” think again. Because it just may be.