Michael Joseph - My Journey Into Insanity Continues

Michael Joseph

He paid for his night out with a copy of True Romance and a Snicker’s. Propped in bed with three pillows, she devoured both trying to ignore the gnawing pains in her back.

Saying this sixteen year-old was naive, was a large understatement. Married across the state line only because her Mother lied about her age, Lynn was more than encouraged to hit the highway and that’s exactly what she and Mike had done. Four states away and now in a two room apartment she was reasonably content with her life. It wasn’t something she often contemplated … whether or not she was happy or content. Life was what it was. She had ceased to rage against it very early on learning that resistance only brought more pain or, even worse, indifference.

They had lived in the car the first two months and even that wasn’t so bad. Because she was pregnant and always having to go to the bathroom Mike took the risk of a nosy cop rapping the window and warning them to move on and tried to park near a gas station. Those days when she awoke with her bladder ready to explode, she was easily able to relieve the pressure and do her morning hygiene routine. She brushed her teeth then washed her face, hair, and feet in the sink - her under arms and “private area” last. Depending on whether or not Mike had found work in the days before they would either have some day old doughnuts and milk for her, coffee for Mike, or indulge in eggs and toast in a local truck stop or café. Where ever they stopped Mike always inquired about work either for the eatery or a word that someone was looking to hire. That’s how they had come by their apartment. Mike was a hard worker who never refused a job but at a very early age a contractor had taken him under his wing and taught him how to paint. He could paint a four bedroom farmhouse quicker than most could paint an efficiency apartment. And he was good – very good. So good, that when he met up with the owner of this place and nearly half of all of the other rental property in the area the man offered up this place plus wages.

Mike was nineteen and like most young men he needed space. Lynn knew he had to have some nights out to shoot some pool and have a few beers with the guys. She didn’t really mind spending time alone and if she had something to read, all the better. Mike said they’d be getting a television any payday now and a crib and some clothes for this baby. Her sister back in her hometown was sending a package too with clothes her baby had outgrown so on this night all was well in her world … except for this lousy pain in her back.

At first she wished he’d come home and go buy some sleeping pills so she could fall asleep and escape this pain that seemed to be getting more and more intense. But long hours passed and she found her self knocking on the doors of the other apartments in the building. She had gone to the bathroom and there was blood. That couldn’t be right. She could hear a tv behind one door but no one answered even when she banged with the side of her fist. She met his car in the driveway and got in, insisting he take her to a doctor. He told her she was crazy that there were no doctors open at 2:30 in the morning! She answered with a demand to be taken to the hospital then and told him about the blood.

She was examined and put in a wheel chair which a nurse was pushing away from the area where Mike stood filing out papers. “Am I being kept overnight for observation?’ she asked the nurse. This had happened to her cousin when he fell off his bike and hit his head – there was blood all over then – tons of it. Kind eyes and a sympathetic smile informed her, “Honey, you’re going to have your baby.” Nice or not, this nurse wasn’t too bright. Even at her age and having only seen a doctor to confirm the pregnancy, she knew it took nine months to make a baby, not seven.

After delivery, she watched in awe as different nurses brought her roommate’s baby to be fed, held and cherished. Flowers and chocolates in hand, the new father arrived to hold his family. Lynn's husband came with a wheel chair and took her to the nursery to see their son. “He’s a fighter”, Mike declared, as much to assure himself as her. “They took his diaper off and he peed a stream so strong it almost hit the nurse in the eye,” he looked at her, hoping for at least a smile. Lynn’s arms ached from emptiness and watched with her face scrunched up against this cruel wall of glass that separated her from her baby. His precious tiny hand rested on the preemie oxygen mask as if to draw closer life giving air to his underdeveloped lungs.

Her roommate’s husband wanted her to take the chocolates, the nurse wanted her to get back in the wheel chair to be moved to a private room and the doctor was intent on injecting her with a sleep aid. Well, she would sleep when they brought her baby she’d told the doctor who looked at her husband in a quizzical way. Mike had just looked at the floor. Sleep came to this woman-child holding a Bible, safe in the knowledge that God would make sure everything was all right.

No words were necessary nor could they have been heard by her husband or the minister who stood at the side of her bed as she woke. The screams of one betrayed and the sound of the Bible hitting the wall were what echoed through the maternity ward.



Author’s note – This took place in June of 1967 before medical technology had reached the levels of today when many babies, much more premature than Michael Joseph, have survived and thrived. With time too, Lynn came to realize that God, had indeed, made sure everything was all right and took this child to live with Him, sparing him from sharing the journey through insanity this young woman would travel for some thirty years after and where she will one day come to know him.

More by this Author

  • TIME TO SAY GOODBYE MY FRIEND
    11

    For my readers who have been following the "I Still Look For You" memoir, this is a peek at the final chapter. I don't know of an author who didn't see the end coming to their own story, but this happened to...


Comments 18 comments

Muse 6 years ago

You write from the heart and it shows. Thank-you.


ralwus 6 years ago

Awesome story. Sad, but yes, it was like that back then. Keep writing them, I'll read whn I can. Don't let me neglect you now. Much love, Charlie


Poohgranma profile image

Poohgranma 6 years ago from On the edge Author

I won't - you keep writing too - love it!


MFB III profile image

MFB III 6 years ago from United States

This so reminds me of a poem/song I just wrote with a female poet whose a friend of mine......I will leave it here for you to peruse...

In The Cradle of My Heart.

-A collaboration by

Glynda and MFB III

**Music is due up soon...

In an orphanage created,

close to heaven's prettiest views,

where many soft clouds cuddle infants

God's sweetest angels gather to.....

care for babies gone too early,

amidst their giggles and their coos.

Placebo mothers rock them gently,

in cradled wings, each fresh from birth

miscarriages and those aborted,

all of the sorrows sent from earth.

Forever young, laughing and bright eyed,

each baby grows wings of its own,

just tiny stars across the night skys,

sweet butterflies around God's throne....

waiting for Mama to come home.

Chorus-

I will forever rock you

in the cradle of my heart

as you travel my sweet lil' one

to where baby angels play

most folks only see an angel

when it's time for life to part

but me.... I got to hold one

till you quietly slipped away.

So spread your tiny angel wings,

heaven's just one cloud away,

until that great reunion when

we'll meet again some day...

there's a path of tiny roses

leading you to heaven's door

with baby's breath and ribbons

for you in a wee bouquet.

I'll think of you each time I dream,

of all the love we'll share,

your fluttering tiny angel wings.....

will always take me there.

Don't be afraid my darling

as God's best angels care for you

tickling your toes

they'll soothe your woes,

and love you as I do.

Chorus-

Here on earth I'll always rock you

in the cradle of my heart

as you travel my sweet lil' one

to where baby angels play

most folks only see an angel

when it's time for life to part

but me.... I got to hold one

till you quietly slipped away.

A collaboration by Glynda and MFB III


Poohgranma profile image

Poohgranma 6 years ago from On the edge Author

A beautiful poem with comforting thoughts. Thanks for posting it.


Scarlett My Dear profile image

Scarlett My Dear 6 years ago from Missouri

Heartbreaking, Pooh. A child's struggle to become a mother. The life inside, then out, then gone. Your writing is honest in emotion and speaks to many. Well done.


Poohgranma profile image

Poohgranma 6 years ago from On the edge Author

Thank-you Scarlett. There was more, the funeral and all but it still won't come out. Maybe another time or maybe this is just enough. You made me feel better with your words - if you can move my heart with your hubs and your comments, then you are GOOD - keep writing and I'll keep reading, deal?


Scarlett My Dear profile image

Scarlett My Dear 6 years ago from Missouri

Spit. Shake. Deal. *smile*


SilentReed profile image

SilentReed 6 years ago from Philippines

Even with the restrained and understated tone of your style of writing you still managed to tug at the heartstring(mind's) of the reader. I find the muted and sparing use of words to convey the emotions of the characters very.....Haiku.


Poohgranma profile image

Poohgranma 6 years ago from On the edge Author

You are most kind. It is the only style of writing I am comfortable attempting. If I try to think about it too much the words come haltingly and sound fake. I appreciate your reading, lovely comments and that you've become a follower, high tribute from you!


SomewayOuttaHere profile image

SomewayOuttaHere 5 years ago from TheGreatGigInTheSky

...i missed this one...voted up....it's hard to vote up a story like this...it is written well.....


Poohgranma profile image

Poohgranma 5 years ago from On the edge Author

Thank you for reading it SOH. I had written this a long time ago and only had to rewrite a small portion. There isn't much to say about something like this, really - or maybe just not here.


SomewayOuttaHere profile image

SomewayOuttaHere 5 years ago from TheGreatGigInTheSky

..yes...lots to say....just not here....

...have a great day PG!


Poohgranma profile image

Poohgranma 5 years ago from On the edge Author

U2 friend :) Happy Valentines Day too!


stars439 profile image

stars439 5 years ago from Louisiana, The Magnolia and Pelican State.

So much hardship, and words will never describe what was endured. Well written. God Bless You Precious Heart.


Poohgranma profile image

Poohgranma 5 years ago from On the edge Author

Hello stars, good to see you here. There is a Wille Nelson song I love, "Gravedigger" and there's a line that goes, "Now, you should never have to watch your only children lowered in the ground, that means you should never have to bury your own babies ..."

No truer words were ever spoken or sung. Surly a piece of my heart and Michael's father's are buried with him in that tiny white coffin.


baygirl33 profile image

baygirl33 5 years ago from Hamilton On.

lovely Pooh!

Don't know where you find the time,but lovely.

voted you up.God Bless.


Poohgranma profile image

Poohgranma 5 years ago from On the edge Author

Thank-you babygirl. I wrote this over seven months ago so I really don't spend that much time writing. My husband is sleeping the majority of the time these past couple of days though so I have written new hubs.

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.


    Click to Rate This Article
    working