"The unexamined life is not worth living" Socrates

- - scatterings of ideas sent to my younger self, a sensitive girl who was fooled into believing she was a boy because of anatomy - -

Thursday 3 November 2011

A Long Time Ago...

"He has been through a lot in the last while, so please, let him sleep."

The voice came from a very young woman. It was hard to see her face clearly, almost as though her features were not fix. The voice was very kind but had a strength, a confidence that was remarkable for her size.

"Who are you?" was the only thing that came to mind, having traveled so far to talk to the little boy in his dreamtime and now being confronted by this stranger. Perhaps she was someone in his life at this age? A teacher? Not a relative, I'd remember her if she was. As her features settled down, a flash of recognition. No, she can't be here. He is way too young.

"I think I will ask you the same question; we don't talk to strangers."

My shock at seeing my own feminine self, so young, but definitely me. Turning back to look at the boy, sleeping so peacefully, then facing her I said quietly, "The boy in the bed is me. He grew up." I said it sheepishly, for some reason. " I really need to talk to him. It is very important to me."

She reacted so quickly, eye-darts flying at me "You waited a while, didn't you? A bit busy were you? What do you need to talk to a little boy about anyway? You must have long forgotten us at your age."

I must have looked shocked, or hurt. She reached out to touch my hand. "I don't know why I said that to you. I am sorry."

But she had been right. I had forgotten that little boy who, from the look of the room and the books and the few toys on my old shelf was about six maybe seven years old. It was the reason for my visit in his and my dreamtime, to try to find some understanding of how 'it' all started. I was suddenly concerned, and wondered if trying to visit my boy self was wrong, then realized that meeting her was what it was really about. "No, I should be the one to be sorry to have upset you. I had worried about angering him, but I didn't expect to see you. He needs to know how wonderful a person he is." Feeling a deep desire to connect with her, I asked "Do you have a name?"

Her soft reply  "Do I need a name? Nobody knows I am here, not even the boy." reminded me how old I was before I even recognized her as part of me. Of course the boy didn't give her a name, since she was just a part of him in this time.

"In my life, you have a name. I know you, and a few people in the world do too. I named you 'Halle'."

"That sounds nice, I suppose. It is sad for me to think that you still need me at your age; sorry, but you are a bit old aren't you?"

"Almost sixty"

"Oh my… I am sorry, I said that already didn't I?" Looking over at my child self, she gestured "He is getting restless. If you want to tell him something, please tell me and I will 'pass it along'. He is confused and upset enough with the adults in his world. He won't understand or accept anything you try to tell him."

She was almost crying, so sad and lovely, almost motherly in her attitude toward that little boy. Softly, I tried to say something she could use or tell him. "He needs to stop trying to make everything work out. He should get upset more. That little boy should react to the world instead of trying to control it. Most of all, he needs to learn to be a child and laugh and play more. Can you help him with all of that?"

A look of defeat came over her face as she sighed and quietly said. "You are all grown up and have forgotten how hard it is to be that sort of person for him. He needs all the help and love I can give him just to get through a day." Shaking her head, then she looked up at me.  "You want him to be a 'normal little boy', I think."
She paused for what seemed a long time. My child self turned in his sleep and opened his eyes briefly. She whispered. "I will try to do what you suggest. Come back again. We need to talk more I think."

"Oh yes, I will. I am on a journey. It brought me here. I did not expect to see you, Halle."

She smiled. "Thank you for the pretty name."


  1. Now you've gone and made me cry. Thanks, Halle.

    Thinking about how helpless I was to understand all this as a child...it really remains a source of a lot of sadness. Things could've worked out so differently with a little wise intervention, no?

  2. Thanks Leslie Ann. I cried too and then I wrote this because she and others like her served us well, giving us inner strength to make it through.
    It makes me cry to think about those who did not survive.

  3. Of course I cried. You write so beautifully, and this is a sad story. But the past is gone. You can't fix the present by revisiting the past, however tempting it might be.

    I hope your journey is going well. And forward. :)

  4. Ariel, hopefully, a better understanding of what Halle has meant to me through my life might 'kickstart' some forward movement. Thanks for the wishes.


  5. Wow! Beautifully written, Halle.
    Have a good weekend,

  6. I'll join in the chorus in giving kudos for your wonderful writing. I see I'm not the only one having trouble keeping the water in her eyes.

    Your story is reminiscent of my journey of "mental archeology" I had been going through recently. I agree with Ariel in that the past is indeed gone. But I have found that examining yesterday can help me make sense of today.


  7. I like this.

    I also like to give my child-self such retrospective support. Meeting the girl as well as the boy is a good idea.

  8. A beautiful post, Halle, and, yes, it did bring tears to my eyes.