“The acknowledgement of having suffered evil is the greatest step
forward in mental health.”
~ Stefan Molyneux
“Hello lamppost, what’cha knowing, I’ve come to watch your flowers growin’, Ain’t you got no rhymes for me? Doo-ait-n-doo-doo, feeling groovy” … little Fergus’s legs couldn’t touch the ground where his sweet, tiny voice sang as he played on the swing his father made for him. He loved the big tree that clutched the thick ropes, holding it securely so that he might enjoy the to and fro motion which provided him such peace.
“Fergus! Fergus! Did you clean the porch like I asked you to do?”
Fergus hopped down from his swing startled and panicked by the sound of his mother’s voice. “No, Mommy, not yet. I was just singing and swinging on my swing…”
“You know the rules, Fergus. Get it done or feel the pain.” His mother already held the strap that she used to swipe at his bare legs.
Fergus backed away from her in fear of the punishment he knew was to come. “Mommy, I… I was just gettin’ ready to… um… to get the broom and … uh” He pivoted in order to run.
“Don’t do it! Don’t you run away from me.” Melanie Chesed lunged and grabbed the four-year-old by his arm.
“Mommy, no, please, no. I’ll be good. I’ll… ouch… ahh… Mommy…”
“Who taught you that song you were singing?” Enraged by his joy, she gave Fergus one last swipe with the strap. She wasn’t as peeved about the porch as she was grieved by the child’s deliberate happiness.
Through hurtful sobs, Fergus hiccupped, “Da… Daddy. Daddy used to sing it to me.”
“Well, your father’s gone and he’s not coming back. I don’t want to hear you singing that song again. I don’t want you singing at all. Do you hear me?”
“Yes… sniff… yes, Mommy.” Fergus rubbed his eyes and wiped his tears with his sleeve. Welts smarted as they swelled on the child’s legs.
“Get that porch cleaned up or feel the pain. Do you hear me?”
“Yes… yes, I will.” He did what his mother asked but wondered most of his life why his father left him to live such a pitiable existence. He must indeed be worthless. The next morning Fergus sought solitude on his swing, but it lay on the ground; its strong ropes cut because of jealousy and vengeance by the woman who was supposed to love and nurture him. The rest of his life with her would be in servitude and in fear of physical retribution.
Fergus grew under the anxiety imposed by a woman who herself had been mistreated and abused by the family who raised her. They weren’t blood. They were a forced family, employed by the State of Illinois. Melanie was two when her mother died of an overdose. Her social workers were delighted to find any family to take her even though she didn’t have immediate signs of mental problems caused by her mother’s drug habit. But these deficits developed later and exacerbated the confluence of maltreatment one little body can tolerate as pain and degradation became part of her daily existence.
By the time she met Sandoval Chesed, Fergus’s father, Melanie’s personality and impulses for survival were set. Sandy was a lovely young man, full of cheer and love for everyone and everything. He acted as a magnet for the young woman who knew nothing but despair and ridicule. Melanie’s past molestations provided her with sexual skills and the needed woe begotten life story that appealed to the soft heart of Sandy Chesed. He could save her. He could offer her a life bursting with love and happiness and acceptance. These are the thoughts that blossom from young love but are a paper sail when the storms from past torments and cruelty rage through the soul of a tortured child. Melanie sucked the life out of Sandy. His every move was under scrutiny.
After Fergus was born, Sandy poured himself into his baby. Jealousy engulfed Melanie and the child became a means to manipulate the man she loved and needed to control. Finally, he could take no more, and Sandy left with the hope to later gain custody of Fergus. Fate’s path was cruel, and Sandoval Chesed was killed in an automobile accident two months after he left Fergus in the hands of an uncontrolled sociopath. Melanie never told Fergus that his father was dead but used his ignorance to taunt him and to confirm his worthlessness. By the time Fergus found out that Sandy died soon after he left, the damage was already done, and Fergus believed himself to be useless unless he fulfilled his assignments on time and with diligence.
The pain inflicted in his early years was only a precursor to the physical attacks he endured until he was old enough to leave home. Melanie’s most efficient maneuver was to bend Fergus’s arm behind his back if he didn’t move fast enough. As Fergus got older and he didn’t perform as expected, he was made to kneel on grains of rice for hours with intermittent beatings by Melanie with a stick. His escape came in the form of enlistment into the army immediately following high school. It suited his home-grown submission to authority. Any joy, any love baffled him. The soulful recognition of these kinds of emotions had been beaten out of him, and he robotically went through life solving problems with the use of forced discipline, whatever that might entail.
Fergus went to college and received two post graduate degrees in none other than Educational Administration and School Leadership. Why he chose a career that involved pubescent children is a mystery. Perhaps it was a way for him to try to rectify what his mother had done to him, but Melanie impaired Fergus for life, and his heart would never grow compassion; it would never feel love because the mutilation of his humanity happened decades before.
And now Fergus’s psychoses were advancing into retaliatory criminal fantasies. The army taught him how to use firearms. He owned guns. He liked guns and the power he had when one was in his grasp. They made him feel safe from the evils he encountered in the past and oddly, in the present. That Cedric woman had to go, along with her undisciplined and disrespectful minions. He didn’t know how, but it was going to happen. The inner voice which had been buried within had surfaced and taken form and Fergus whispered, “I’ll get it done, and they will feel the pain.”
“Mr. Chesed, I need to speak with you.” Principal Matt Springer broke Fergus’s daydreaming as he came into his office to convey the bad news.
“Yes, Mr. Springer. How might I be of assistance.”
“I’m sorry to be the one to tell you this, but Donna Hefley has decided to put your program on hold. Frankie Cedric is proposing an alternative program to the school board in a week, and Donna thinks it might suit the students in question better.”
“Oh, I see. How is Ms. Cedric’s program different than mine?”
“Well, I don’t know the specifics, but Frankie has been studying students with social behavioral disorders for some time. I think it is a new approach to helping them learn and benefit from what we have considered in the past, bad behavior.”
“You mean, letting them talk their way out of misbehavior?”
“I think, at first, it may appear that way, but there is more to it. Anyway, I just wanted you to know that you may keep your office until after the school board rules on Frankie’s proposal, but if they decide to go her way, she will need your space.”
It was all Fergus could do to keep the lid on his obvious frustration. As soon as Matt Springer left, Fergus picked up a paperweight and threw it across the room. His brain was exploding and his very being screeched, GET IT DONE, FERGUS, OR FEEL THE PAIN! His transformation was complete, and it was terrifying.