When does one begin?
Can we really be anything before we develop a conscience? an inner voice? a sense of self?
And if so, What are we before we are begun?
I began at childhood, but not really, because as a child, I never had any agency of my own
Never even left the house really, wasn't allowed to. I ate when I was fed and I donned what I was given, if and when it was given to me.
My father was a mean drunk, and my mother was something worse. I can't even remember their names...
I feel bad about that sometimes.
I don't recall my brother ever speaking to me before the age of ten. He was older than me, which only makes it weirder, but I remember exactly what he said
Perhaps because I'd never heard his voice before and it startled me, or perhaps because moments earlier he had waltzed into the living room, kitchen knife in hand, and stabbed our father 23 times
"Get your coat" He said.
On my way out of the apartment I caught a glimpse of my mother's corpse.
Maybe that was my beginning: when he pulled me out those doors and into the grimy unforgiving world that has continued to batter me to this day.
Every day after that has felt like a chisel, slowly chipping away at my humanity, sculpting me into this perfect specimen of violence and madness before you
My hands have caused such horrors that my own mind can't comprehend. I can feel it, closing itself down, abandoning the body so the body can do what the body must
Trying desperately to protect itself from the reality of what I have done, what I'm capable of doing if pushed hard enough, if scared shitless enough, if pissed on or off at the right levels
The mind does what the mind must while the body fights for survival...
Yet sometimes I can't help but believe that's not true. That was not MY beginning. That was A beginning.
I've been working hard, this past years, to tear down everything I've let others build around myself: All the walls, and the monsters and the fangs.
All the borders to keep me scared, and small and pitiful so that every measly scrap of decency they let fall upon my chambers felt as merciful as the brightest miracle God himself could muster
I'm not there yet, but I'd like to believe that if I dig deep enough, I might find a piece of humanity they didn't manage to stomp out, however unlikely it seems.
So, when do we begin?
I'd like to believe my beginning wasn't the day I left my apartment
But the day I left my brother.