The Prince of Ice, everyone called him. People came from all around to see the mkagical boy whose very breath froze in the air and fell as snow. The boy who turned his morning orange juice into slush because he liked it that way. The boy who could fingerpaint frost onto glass in beautiful, intricate patterns, or pull water from the air to make a snowball appear in his hand. The boy who loved to bring cool breezes to hot days, delighted in making snow cones for his man cousins, and made his family proud with the cool ease in which he excelled at school.
And all the people wondered how it was that he could do such things. Was he magical? Was his mother a witch or a fairy in disguise? What is some kind of genetic mutation caused by a secret government experiment? Was is God?
But the answer was much simpler :
He could do it because he was dead inside.
And that made things a lot easier.
Been pondering my icy childhood today after seeing a video that talked about how a single caring, stable adult in a child’s life can make all the difference between a child who grows up healthy and strong and one whoi becomes just another statistic.
And I thought, oh, so that’s what I was missing.
Because there was nobody there for me at all when I was a kid,. Nobody I could turn to when things got bad for me, which happened frequently. Nobody who would take my side or protect me. Nobody I could talk to about my problems.
Nobody willing to do so much as get up from their desk to keep me from being bullied.
It’s no wonder I turned so completely inward. There was nothing for me in the outer world but coldness, rejection, loneliness, and abuse.
So I retreated into books and TV and video games. I felt safe in that world. Still do. It might not solve anything but when I am absorbed by my distractions. I am not anxious or depressed or lonely or broken or sad.
At least, no consciously. Those emotions are always lurking under the surface for me, and that only makes me bury myself in my distractions all the deeper in order to escape them more thoroughly.
It’s my coping mechanism.
It’s also my addiction.
And what will kill me in the end.
Sooner or later, we all become victims of our coping mechanism, I suppose.
Like a lot of brainy children in bad situations, I retreated into the world of the mind. That’s what all the cooks and TV and video games was about. Those activities occuipy my massive mind enough to keep it from picking at its own scabs and harming itself. There are no mental CPU cycles left for neurotic self-destruction.
I am safe from myself.
And yet those negative emotions the activities push into the dark corners of my mind do get stronger over time and weigh me down till I can barely move.
This, of course, is painful and sad and not healthy at all.
Luckily, I can escape all that with my books etc.
That is, more or less, how addiction works. Feeding the addiction makes problems worse. Addict responds to this pain by escaping into addiction .
All addiction are a cure for emotions. Or rather, a treatment. A drug. A substitute. They are a way to stop feeling what you are feeling and keep those negative thoughts at bay.
The crowd outside the Prince of Ice’s home grew larger and larger every day. Everyone wanted something from him. Everyone had a need to fill, and saw him as the solution. Everyone projected their desires onto him. Everyone wanted his blessing.
And he refused to see any of them, because then he would have to choose.
At first the crowd had been small and friendly. But as the days dragged by, the crowd grew larger and the mood grew more dark.
“Make the boy speak!” the crowd chanted. “He owes us that much!”
“If you don’t talk to them soon, ” said his Dad, “they will come for you, and all the security guards in the world won’t be able to stop them. ”
The Prince just shook his head, and went back to painting with frost.
Really feeling all those icicles piercing my heart tonight, which is why I chose to write about this subject. I look back on my childhood and I wonder how I survived it.
A child being alone in the world like that is just plain wrong. And it made me wrong. I have so much wrongness inside me.
Wrong not in a moral sense, but wrong like a broken limb is wrong. Things are not as they should be in me. Some part of me still retains the pattern of a healthy mind and knows that I didn’t get the emotional nutrition I needed in my childhood and that therefore there are large parts missing from my mental makeup. Parts that were supposed to be awakened by the warmth (and heat) of others and thre warm fresh blood of spring have instead remained frozen stiff and inactive in the deep freeze vaults of my inner world.
The dreamers sleep in their icy coffins, and dream dreams which are dark and subtle and full of oozing shadows and flickering lights and moments of clarity that happen too fast to be remembered.
Between the coffins long dark demons dwell, and walk with ghostly silence from dreamer to dreamer, brushing the frost from the glass to peer inside.
And sometimes a dreamer feels their infernal heat and stirs, pressing up towards this sudden warmth, trying hard to remember what it was like to be alive.
At this the demon grins, and presses the buttons that force it to go back to sleep.
“It’s for their own good. ” they say to one another. “We are protecting them. ”
And then they laugh, and move on to another.
Tht actually seems like a pretty good start on a science fiction story about that old trope of the massive ship full of colonists kept in suspended animation.
They would start to be able to talk to one another. That much I know.
Anyhow, I guess that’s all the shrapnel I can disgorge tonight.
I will talk to you nice people in the morning.