Saturday, August 15, 2009
My school days tormentor
I'm sure that many, if not all of us have episodes where we get bullied or picked on in school. Some of us have tormentors that seem to gain great joy out of torturing us every day. With me it was a kid named Carl. Carl always enjoyed putting me through some kind of torment. It could be something as simple as walking by me in the hall and punching me in the stomach. Often it could be more elaborate by using my autistic naivety to convince me to say or do something that would end up making me look foolish to others in the class so they all could get a good laugh and he would look cool. He was a popular boy in our class. He had a lot of friends. I on the other hand with my autistic ways and nature wasn't a very popular kid. I didn't have many friends in my class. Even though I was constantly picked on by my tormentor, I still had a longing for his acceptance and friendship. He could see no matter how mean he was to me that I looked up to him and wanted his friendship. He could see I was naive. So he planned his next move on me. He started being nice to me! He started treating me like a friend. I fell for it completely. I was so overjoyed at finally being accepted that my mind completely forgot all the terrible things he had done to me. He was now my friend! Or so I thought. On a Friday at school he came up to me and said hi, then invited me to go with his family to a restaurant that had video games, pizza, etc. I was thrilled. I accepted of course. When I arrived home from school I anxiously told my mom about being invited to go. She warned me that this might just be another prank that my tormentor was playing on me. But I refused to believe her. I just knew that he had changed and somehow finally accepted me for who I was and liked me. Saturday came and I was the most excited kid in the world. Waiting and staring out the window for his parents car to arrive so I could go and have a fun day with a new found friend full of joy and wonder. As the hours went by my mood started turning somber. I was starting to realize that my mother was right. He wasn't coming. This was indeed just another joke on me. The tears started to flow and lasted for hours. I felt once again completely unaccepted and rejected. My mother did however save me from further torment in school. She came up with the idea to not show my anger, not show that he had hurt me. To go to school and apologize to him for not being home on Saturday because my parents had taken me to an amusement park that was far more popular than the restaurant he went to. I took her advice and could see the frustration build on his face as I gave him my apology and walked away. To him the joke had backfired and he got no satisfaction. To me it still hurt severely, I can feel the tears trying to well up in my eyes now, but at least the lie my mom came up with saved me from further humiliation. An autistic person is like an elephant, we never forget and it's a curse. Most people would be over this long ago but because of my aspergers/autism I can't let it go. The torment continued through high school up until Carl contracted leukemia. Then the torture stopped. Maybe due to him focusing on his own suffering, or perhaps he was trying to keep from burning in hell for everything he had put me through, and possibly others too. After he passed away, his memorial at the town church was packed with almost everyone from the town. I walked into the church and it felt like every eye in there turned to see me in surprise. "What's he doing here?" echoed through my ears. I stood there, looking at the coffin for a moment, and smiled. Then I turned and walked out. Now don't get me wrong, I wasn't smiling because this kid died of a horrible disease. I was smiling because I knew at last my torture was over. At least from him. I'm sure many people thought differently. I still don't know why things happen the way they do. But to me it was justice from god.