I had not been around Mexican guys drinking beer in a long time. That’s my family, the family I don’t see anymore, since my mom died.
The Mexican guys drinking beer got my feelings swirled around. My instinct was to stay as close to my spouse as possible and pretend I didn’t understand what they were saying. I was doing Flight, of the fight, flight, or freeze possibilities.
I was comforted, talking to a little kid who was there, playing with the dogs. He told me about a flying dream he had, and wanted me to watch him do flips on the trampoline. I said, “Wow! Yeah, that looks fun!”
Four-year-olds are amazing, and this one was low mischief. Many kids that age left to their own devices would tear shit up. He was a chill kid who wanted to talk and connect, like me.
“Why are you drinking water?” he asked.
“Because it’s delicious!” I said. “Why aren’t you drinking water?”
“I drink hugo,” he said.
“What?” I asked.
“Hugo!” he said.
“Oooooh!” I said. “I get it. What kind of jugo? What fruit?”
“I like watermelon,” he said.
“What about strawberry?” I asked.
The dogs were running full speed, very excited about something, and one hit my right leg at full force. I yelled in pain and limped to a chair, where I rubbed my calf and felt like I was going to cry. As if the dog was mean to me–I took it personally. Sometimes the loss is more clear.
Then I thanked Mother God the dog hadn’t hit my knee. I would have been in big trouble then. My leg felt fine just an hour later.
The kid said the dogs might be thirsty. “Is there a dog bowl with water?” I asked.
Yes, he found the bowl, but it was empty. He seemed worried. “You could bring it to the kitchen and ask an adult to put water in it!” I said.
Then the dad came to collect the kid–the kid showed the dad the empty dog bowl and said something about water. The dad chastised the kid in Spanish for speaking English. I felt bad I was corrupting his kid. Well, at least I was paying attention to him.
The dad was tall, muscled, and wearing no shirt. I didn’t like him at all. Mexican guys drinking beer scare me–my family, family pain. “I don’t understand you,” the dad said in Spanish to the kid, which I didn’t believe. The kid switched to Spanish, and they left. I was sorry to see him go.
Mexican guys drinking beer are my people, but I don’t belong with them. I must admit I don’t belong with the women either. This is not a neutral fact–it makes me cry.
Maybe I was enby the whole time and never knew it. Or I belong in the backyard always–autistic, stimming. Or I’m doomed, and family will never work for me. If I was not large fat / superfat, I would jump on the trampoline.
what I was doing
“What are you doing?” the kid asked me a few times.
“Just looking around. What do you want me to be doing?” I asked.
It was a good relationship, half hour relationship with a random kid. I would rather talk to four year olds than most adults, and I’m glad I had the resources to be there for him, for a little while.
Later I told my spouse that most of the women I know who didn’t have kids, don’t like kids. I like kids a lot, but I didn’t have my own for many reasons.
Briefly I theorized before that I love so hard and fast because I have all this love in me that I would have given to my kids, if I had any. Like I have spare care floating around inside me, and it drifts onto adults I know. But then I look at kidless friends, and I don’t see them doing emotion and connection like I do at all.
Life is full of mystery. Thank you for hearing my family pain.