In the early, raw days of March, I had been conceived…within a stone soaked, with no remorse, tunnel. Both parents were state hospital patients. My father on the criminally insane ward. My mother…severely depressed in the Brown building.
Deep within the bowels of the catacombs Janice and Harold sucombed to passion in a girth under the earth, idyllically termed, Lover’s Lane.
Had this been this first and only deceit handed down to me? Had this been the only piece of fiction…I discovered via my own research? If push came to shove…as it always did during my childhood; Could or would I have forgiven the shame?
I would like to believe I was stable enough in my mid forties, to allot for the transgression.
But divides and lies run far and wide. From the moment I descended to the earth in my belligerent glory, nothing would be normal.
My brother and sister, had had their own demons to share. A demon and horned devil that came in the shape of my mother’s first husband.
Where had the New Hampshire State Hospital staff been? Why wasn’t my father, a criminal and murderer, been more closely monitored?
I can say that is typical of state run facilities. As is the truth about warehousing those with severe mental illness, things get out of hand. And, people with minimum wage incomes…just don’t care.
On January 4th, 1963, this court being of the opinion that it will be dangerous that the said, Harold Bowley, should go at large. Ordered that he be committed to the New Hampshire Hospital and there he shall remain until he is discharged by due course of law.
Due course of law?…
On October, 25th, 1965, the said Acting Superintendent requests the court’s permission for the said, Harold Bowley, make off ground visits to include one overnight visit on weekends.
From there on out, after two short years, my father was allowed to stay, overnight, in the house of his psychologist; Mr. John Hawkins.
How did a man, who continues to this day to be a threat to himself and others, get away with murder? Court evidence revealed a man that observation and study suggests…
‘suffering from a psychotic depression and a danger to the population. A disease so profound it affects his mind and judgment…’
HE fuckin’ stabbed his wife 35 times!
Indeed he had conned his way into the psychologist’s home life. It was in Warner, New Hampshire, where my father would spend his weekends before his release in late 1967.
Mr. Hawkins not only allowed my father into his home. He led him by the hand. Introducing him to his wife…and, eventually, his two children, Naomi and Channing. This is in my educated opinion the utmost defining characteristic of a narcissist.
Psychologist Stephen Johnson writes that the narcissist is someone who has “buried his true self-expression in response to early injuries and replaced it with a highly developed, compensatory false self.
And, my mother, who held very little esteem. Held no opinion of self, other than relation to abusive men…My mother fell into the callous and killing hands of my father. This all took place under the not watchful eye of case workers, psychologists, psychiatrists, district attorneys, judges, etc., etc.
I personally hold Mr. Hawkins, responsible.. And, currently, forty plus years later, refuse to call him a doctor.
Not only did my father enjoy the pleasant views, farm life, non restrictions of living in the wild of Warner…He introduced his whole family to Mr. Hawkins.
I had been taken back. When first reading Mr. Hawkins name in the court papers. How he spoke with high recommendation on my father’s behalf. The name seemed familiar. How had I known it?
Then a connection…Our families were joined. Joined at the psychotic hip.
As a child, I could not quite connect, why my parents had been befriended by the Hawkins. Who were they? Where did they come from?
The Hawkins family appeared to me, earthy, educated, not mean or aggressive. Quite different than relatives and others, my family had known.
For that matter, the Hawkin’s and Bowley’s spent many holidays together. We spent weekends working in John’s small family farm. Learning of nature. Speaking on things of importance, politics, religion, life, deep stuff.
Again, I still ask, how does this shit happen?
Mr. Hawkins was later needed to assist my sister, Sybil, in her own ‘breakdown.’
Breech of contract! Conflict of interest!
I have long since stopped crying, shaking my head, beating myself up…Over the injustice served to my siblings and I, via the New Hampshire State Hospital.
Course, none of the above could be considered a ‘lie’ per-say. For in my mother’s chaotic, catholic and dim eyes…Avoiding the truth is not the same as…lying.
Where had my grandparents been? Wasn’t it strange my mother…was released from the hospital…pregnant?
And, of course, years later, when I asked Janice, my mother, about Harold’s murderous rage…
‘I knew he had killed her. I didn’t ask him questions. He seemed upset every time I brought it up…’