I got surgery for a ruptured penis. Even though I was under a general anesthesia I woke up from it with dreams of horrific pain. I dreamed my body was being sawn in half from the crotch up, with dreamed pain to match. That pain I remember.
When it was over and I could go home, I had to wear a cup for a month or two.
My Father drove me home from the hospital, and for the next two weeks took care of me. My Mother wasn't around. When I asked about her, my Father just said she's resting up in the hospital.
My Father got to know me more in those two weeks than he had in a year. I felt a bond forming.
At the same time, I wanted to get back to Lani and Lono. I believed that all the horrible things that had happened since I stopped seeing them happened just because of that. If I had not turned away from them I wouldn't have taken up with Jackson. If I hadn't taken up with Jackson my Mother wouldn't be in the hospital.
But my Father wasn't negligent in the way my Mother was. He wouldn't let me run off for hours in a day. I had to stay by the house while he was taking care of me.
I had a birthday coming up, in July. My Father asked me what I wanted most, and I told him I wanted a ball. I had in mind a rubber bouncing ball like one I'd seen Jackson play with. Dad said it would be easy to get me a ball, and asked me what else I wanted. The only thing I could think of was to beg him to go to Stoneman Field with me so he could meet my friends. He said, no, he was too old to meet my friends. When I told him my friends were big people too, he just laughed, like he didn't believe me.
Finally, the two weeks were up and my Mother came home.
In those days mental patients often had to dress just like convicts in a penitentiary. That's the way my Mother was when she stepped out of the car. She was wearing striped pajamas with big black and white stripes so she couldn't get far without being seen if she ever escaped. Her head had been shaved and was still bandaged.
As she came in the house I stood waiting. I'd been coached by my Father to say "I love you Mommy." I squeaked my line out as she glared at me. She said, "Get the fuck out of my way, you filthy freak. I don't want to ever see you again. You did this to me." She went to bed and didn't come out for the weekend.
Then the weekend was over, and my Father had to go back to work. That morning I ran off to see Lani and Lono.
When I saw them I rejoined them in tears. I told Lani I was sorry for being angry with him, and he was right, I should be outside the kapu, I wasn't meant to live like normal people.
Lani told me that he was the one who had been wrong. It was wrong of him, he said, to laden me with all his hopes and dreams and not consider my needs, and it was wrong to talk about the old ways as if they were perfect and the way things should be now.
He said he had already known that the kapu was wrong, but he was just clinging to everything, and you can't do that. Some of the old ways are best left dead.
I told them everything that had gone wrong during the month since I'd last seen them. Then Lani took out a piece of wood he was carving, and got ready to work on it. It was a different piece than I'd seen him working on before. He said he'd been saving it in the hopes of seeing me again, he wanted me to watch him carve it from the beginning.
I asked what it was going to be. He said some sort of animal. He said it would be a gift for a special little brother. I said I didn't know he had a little brother, that I thought the one he had died. He said this is for a different little brother. Then he started carving, while Lono sang a chant.