Mental Health

The Red Sand Bucket

The metal sand bucket was red. It was small enough for a little girl to carry down to the beach.

I would spend many hours sitting in the sand, certain that I would finally dig deep enough to reach China. Why China?  I remember one day early on, I was asked where I thought I was digging. I did not know. The grownup said it looked like I was trying to get to China. From that day on, I was digging a hole that would lead to China. Maybe it was not so scary there.

Memory does not serve me well, it never has. People throughout my lifetime have asked about what my childhood was like. The small glimpses I do have, fill me with a sense of anxiety and fear. This is often the case of incest in the home.

Today, I am a 58 year old grandmother, finally on a path to becoming both mentally and physically healthier than I have ever felt. I attribute this to the heroic people in 2018 who were brave enough to make public the sexual abuse they suffered through. Thanks to their courage, thousands who have suffered in silence for years, now have the nerve to speak. Secrets kill. Sometimes physically and part of one’s spirit dies. The spark felt this past year from witnessing the heroism of so many has led me to my purpose. I display my work where, at the very least, someone, especially a child who’s innocence has been stolen finds some solace.

Initially, I posted only images on Instagram. They were dark. They were not easy to view. Photos mirror one’s soul. Abuse leads to despondency. This can easily be seen in my initial posts. The range of emotions a survivor goes through is extreme, yet often the person believes he or she is the only human being who has ever felt so badly, ironically, the negative thoughts most often are self-imposed.

Something positive has come from the pain I came to live with. Cameras capture emotions that I continue to experience. Healing is valuable, yet the damage does not disappear. My scars are exhibited on Instagram. If just one finds comfort in knowing he or she is not alone, my heartaches will have had some value.

A red bucket is on display at my home as a reminder. I have yet to visit China.I am still here.

A survivor.

Feel free to view my work on Instagram. Simply search @kayb333.

My wish for the future generations is a safer world.

Author: Kay Benoy Email: kayb333@gmail.com Author Bio: I am a photographer. My love is capturing an image and grasping what other’s may not. Words accompany my daily posts on Instagram.


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