November 26, 2016 (Saturday)

by Yule Heibel on November 25, 2017

There’s a sad woman walking down the state route into town. She’s older, but seems to be intellectually disabled. One sad manifestation of her mental disabilities is that she frequently walks down the street shouting angrily, engaged in some “dialog” with person or persons unknown. Because she’s often dressed in an immature manner – in clothes too childish and hardly fit for an adult woman, as though someone told her what to wear – I sometimes think she’s railing against a parent. Her mother, perhaps, who perhaps thought that by dressing her daughter as though she were a little girl, she could magically make her mental abilities be congruent with her age (child). Except, of course, she grew. She developed breasts and hips. Her hair, until some months ago dyed a mid-brown, went gray, perhaps prematurely, but who knows how old she is and maybe it went gray naturally years ago? But I suspect there was a parent who couldn’t bear having an old daughter with the mental abilities of a child, and who told her to dress like a girl. Consequently, her posture now seems incapable of uprightness. She walks down the sidewalk at an increasingly stronger angle, her shoulders hunched, head down, face parallel to the pavement. And so she proceeds, often yelling at full throttle, hurling what sounds like abuse, but directed, I think, at herself. She’s mimicking the voice she hears at home. Except lately, she has calmed down. She still seems angry, mostly, but sometimes, when I pass her, she actually looks out of her inward posture with some curiousity, or at least a less frightened awareness of others. I don’t hear her shouting so much anymore. I suspect her mother died.

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