Makiya was racing around the play area, trying to find someone to play with, deciding which piece of equipment to tackle next, pleasantly occupied, so I wandered back over to my mom and her husband, who was intently watching a group of kids playing on the spinner. He quickly filled me in on what he had just witnessed; a little boy, only six or seven years old, nastily, physically, and roughly pushed two girls to the side as he forced his way onto the spinner, proclaiming that “the man goes first!”
I sputtered, coughed, choked as he relayed the story, and my attention returned to the boy. What I continued to see stunned me; I felt sickened.
He seemed to zero in on one little girl in particular, who was only around the age of three. He would literally charge towards her, like a bull having spotted a red flag; the cartoon image of smoke streaming from his ears and flared nostrils flitted through my mind. He pulled her back towards the spinner, yelling something at her as he shoved her forward, and then tossed her aside as he again hopped onto the spinner. There was another, older girl, who tried to intervene, telling him to stop and reminding him of how little this other child was, but he had no qualms about showering aggression back upon her. I stood there, doing a little tippy-toe dance as I felt drawn in, needing to intervene, but then more parents would slide in front, blocking me, only to move again, giving me access to the situation once again; back and forth, back and forth, should I say something, should I not… He paced back and forth, between the two identical spinners, huffing and puffing, “Grrr… the girls get this one too?!” Finally, there was a threat to tell, and an interest in the location of his mom, and the boy raced off.
It took a few moments to locate the mother, sitting, hidden behind the climbing bars and slide, chatting away with another mother. It didn’t take long to realize she wasn’t paying attention to the actions of her son, and even less time to consider that, even at the young age of six or seven, it was very possible this little boy left his mother feeling intimidated, perhaps even scared.
This little boy carried himself with a look upon his face unlike anything I have seen in a child, or maybe I have, in a horror movie. Evil came to mind afterwards, harsh, but true. He looked more like an adult male, a man who had been tortured and tormented, left in a state of rage.
Glad that he hadn’t attempted to unleash any of his hostility on my own daughter, I tried to distract myself from it, and we soon left the play area. As we left, we came upon the boy again. He had removed his shoes and had his feet in the fish ponds; we were in an indoor natural area. He quickly pulled out of the water as he shouted threats at another, older boy and went running after him.
The whole situation left me feeling very agitated and angry, and a little judgemental. I spewed off a few things, including that he would likely spend a lot of time in jail, at an early age.
What it was in truth, was, and is a very sad situation; that a child so young could have been shown, taught and lived through enough horror to leave him in such a state.
(While there are some details that I have purposely left out, in an attempt not to offend anyone, the roots of this little boys actions and words are buried in his family, their lifestyle and beliefs... While I respect all of our insights, beliefs, ways of life, and the right to them, there are differences that are sometimes shown to be just plain offensive and inappropriate.)