He laid there behind me, naked, stretched out on the floor.
I see the beige, extra shaggy carpet rolling out in front of me. My chubby cheek is marked by tears, but I don't dare make crying noises. I watch my fingers play with the carpet's tresses. I watch as if I am always an outsider looking in at my own life unfolding in front of me.
Are those my fingers?
My nakedness is formal. I am not comfortable with it; I want to put my dress back on and go play in the garden with the cheerily-labeled bubbles in the hot pink bottle. I focus on the color hot pink in my mind.
He already got what he wanted. Why did he insist on stretching out the seconds, making me wish for the physical pain over the torture of enduring his creepy presence?
It would be years later when I registered the impact of the words he said to me next.
I looked at the surgeon directly.
"My breasts were never pendulous, they are very round. You didn't cut far enough under my armpit and now they look worse. Without the weight on the front, they are folding under my arms."
He replied in a concerned tone, "Sparking, I think they look right. I see the fold, but if you continue exercising as the swelling decreases, you will be able to tighten up that skin. Plus, I didn't want to cut into any lymph nodes if possible."
I pressed on, "this isn't what I asked or paid for."
He then suggested liposuction in his office to see if he could alleviate the puffiness. There would be no cost. He wanted to put me out; I wanted a local.
Finally, I agreed.
I didn't like his hairy chest.
Whenever I saw a hair in my bath water, I would literally scream as if I was being murdered. In all fairness to myself, a part of my sanity was being annihilated every time he was left alone with me.
As he lay there that day stroking my fine hair, with his hairy chest pushed up against my back, he began innoculating my mind full of his ideas for my future.
"Sparking, one day you are going to have big, juicy breasts. Men are going to love them. I want you to let anyone who wants to play with them be able to. This is your duty as my daughter and wife."
He ran his hands up and down my flat, three and a half year old chest.
I laid still.
I was hardly old enough to even understand the implications of what he was asking me. However, forever afraid for my life, I simply said, "yes Daddy."
The liposuction didn't have the desired affect.
When the surgeon said he wouldn't pay for the extra hospital fee to fix my not-completely-perfect breast reduction, I flew into a rage.
"I wanted you to take more off! You wouldn't! Now, because you didn't take more, I am going to have to pay the hospital fees twice? I fail to undertand how this is my responsibility?"
He was unrelenting. He agreed only to waiving his fees.
My quest for perfect, small breasts was one more surgery away.
Yet, I persisted.
Sitting in the therapist's office reliving the nightmare of the day my father told me this, the impact it had on preceeding events in my life was overwhelming to me.
I flashed on changing my bra under my shirt in the girl's locker room. I flashed on the homeless old man who wanted to pick me up at a gas station as a teenager and this inexplicable ache I had inside to let him even though I didn't want to. I flashed on being shy with my first love, never letting him see me naked, sneaking in and out of the covers.
I flashed on the series of surgeries.
In just a few moments, the impact of a few lines spoken many years before became apparent. The roadmap of choices lay before me like jigsaw pieces finally snapping into place.
Tremors of remorse swept through me, for many reasons, but mostly for the breasts I had mutilated in an effort to quit having men pay attention to me in that way.
The unconscious lengths I had gone to to rid myself of my father's feral, unrequited, abusive legacy shook me.
Finally, I cried for me.
No child on this planet should ever have to endure what I was raised in. The brainwashing of the cult that my father surrounded himself with, permeated every aspect of my life. They made sure to support one another in their desire to molest, rape and violate children in ways people don't even want to know exist. But the point is that it does exist, even today.
There have been days that I pray for my own ignorance to revisit me.
However, I know the damage these men have done not only to me, but to many children in this country, some of whom I've met. They make up the industrial roots of the sex trade of children in the United States.
This is my voice, speaking out into the ether of night, like a message in a bottle, letting the right people know they are not alone.
I am not alone any longer, either.