I have one distinct snapshot of my earliest memory. One that foretold what the rest of my internal and relational reality would look like.
I’m throwing a tantrum on the floor of a daycare, pointing at a couple girls and a boy who are playing together. For some reason, they do not include me. They don’t look at me. I am crying even louder, screeching now. So loudly and violently that the teacher becomes afraid.
Next moment I remember is my mother, confused and harried, coming into the daycare and trying to understand what I want. I point to the kids, sobbing from the gut.
The teacher understands and…I think she demands that they do play with me. Pouting and crinkling their noses, they drag their feet over and plop their toys down next to me. Grudgingly, they play. My wailing turns into an aching silence. I look at them. I feel worse. Even as a toddler, I can gather the wisps of the tragic, following thought…
Will it really take force to make others come close to me? Will no one accept, or dare even, like all that I am?
An idea right then ingrains itself deeply into my psyche until I become old enough at twenty-four to put it into words. That it was not possible for anyone to truly and deeply want to spend their time with me on their own accord. I would always have to make them, bait them…convince them in order to assuage my loneliness.
I am that toddler now. Not the crying or desirous one. The aching and resigned one. Knowing that no other playmates can make her feel better. I can only wait for the King, the One who says that he wants to be with me without my having to trick him or convince him. Or beg. Or ask, please be with me, like I had done so before and never ever will do again.
The One who promised to take me away from this void that my cries for love echo into.