There was never an absence of criticism, or name calling. I was always the butt end of taunts and mockery and isolated, not by choice. If it wasn’t my slim physique that was being ridiculed, it was my nose for being too big, or my hair for being styled strangely, or my teeth for being crooked. I maintained amicable relations with most in my family, but my elder brother despised me for as long as I can remember. So trying to find something to be positive about in life was never an easy task. If I asked for a second helping of food I would be verbally abused. If I spent time with the very few friends I had from school, I would be ostracised for not having time for the family, and therefore deliberately excluded from family activities when I got home.

I recall times when I walked through the streets at night until very late, listening to the laughter and noises from the homes in the neighbourhood of families and friends doing what families and friends do. It was alien to me. The reason I was walking the streets at that time of the night when I was in my very early teens, if that old even, was because for reasons that I can’t recall, I did not accompany my family to a visit to some or other extended family. As a result I had to loiter outside until they returned because I was locked out of the house. One night I was literally kicked out of the house when I was barely 6 or 7 years old. He grabbed me by the scruff of my neck and sent me flying out the front door to go searching for a jacket that he had hidden away to teach me a lesson for forgetting to take it in the house when I was done playing. It worked. I never forgot that lesson.

Excerpt from the book I never wrote

Ramblings of a Madman

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