I need to accept and be able to function with the fact that, for now and into the foreseeable future, I do not have a LFM. (Little Family Member - what she was called before she was called anything else by me here or elsewhere online.)
She was taken away from me by emotionally weak bullies who decided that taking a stand against "pedophilia" was more important to them than continuing to accommodate the presence of their loved one who came with the label attached, despite desperate pleas from said loved one to not be erased as he had done no one harm and was more than willing to comply with whatever conditions that might be placed upon him - if only he could keep his family.
The simple truth is, they couldn't stomach it. Their beliefs were confronted with a situation that directly contradicted them, and the beliefs won. Instead of a groundbreaking coexistence based on the shared virtues of trust, compassion, loyalty, and love: they opted for the preservation of false virtue to the expense of those very virtues that are core to the human experience.
From the very beginning, once I became a "pedophile" to them, I was nothing other than that; all they sought was to establish that I had not harmed their daughter and then to prevent me through coercion from ever contacting her again - and then, as if I was the one responsible, the mighty destroyer of families: to do anything within their power to keep me as far away as possible from any young girls who might hypothetically become next "victims" to my shameless crimes of engaging my own humble influence to cultivate LOVE, LOYALTY, COMPASSION, AND TRUST with those individuals who seem to ceaselessly tug at my heartstrings for such gifts whilst effortlessly illuminating and enlightening my consciousness in every way possible, turning what was once cold, monotone, and lifeless into a world where the sun shines radiantly and rainbows loom around every corner.
Their actions were at best virtue signalling in real form with lasting consequences to priceless relationships that will never be the same again, if they are ever to be reincarnated at all.
I made a bet that love was enough for those priceless relationships to stay true despite the necessary semantic changes, and I lost. I was genuinely surprised at the power of hatred because I had grown so accustomed to such fair-weather sources of love.
If it ever will become apparent to them how they have hurt me - and, albeit indirectly, their own daughter - I cannot say.
I know she is out there, I take comfort in knowing that she loves me and is cheering me on every step of the way, and each time I think of her I will pray that life will one day bring us back together so that we can reconnect and live together, grow together, learn together, play together, and laugh together as we were always meant to.
But here I am still standing in the middle of the road in the pouring rain, staring speechless at the point where I saw you vanish, as if through sheer force of will I can pull you back here. I screamed - but no one heard, no one came. God knows I could lie down here and wait, but I would starve to death before you - chained by the heel to someplace warm with a roof and where there's always enough to eat and you're surrounded by your caretakers and friends and many admirers - would ever happen to wander down this old road and find me.
You made many, many dreams of mine come true. Just by being you.
And for that, you will have a permanent special place deep within my heart. I can only hope that you truly do understand this.
Forever and for always, I adore you.
Someday, I will play you these songs that I wrote for you. I know it.
One dream which you inspired - rather than fulfilled - was to pursue a profession that would grant me a unique and honorable role: to be of real service to kids; to be a stepping stone to help the little ones I loved so much to learn, to grow, to experience all of the beauty and wonder in the world around us; to give generously of myself in order to enrich their lives in any ways I can imagine; and to be a beacon of support, comfort, and protection whenever a child is in need of those too.
When I told you what I wanted to do: I will never forget your gasp of pleasure, your beaming smile, and the warmth in your voice as you gave me your most earnest encouragement.
"Yeah, do you think it would be a good fit for me?"
"Definitely! You're amazing with kids! You let them do stuff, you never get mad at them, you care about their feelings, you always know what they need so you can take care of them..."
"So I should do it?"
"Yeah! Of course! I think you should do it."
I cry as I write this now because the memory is so vivid.
Years later, I would give up on that ambition because of drug abuse, and various other mental health issues that were giving me somewhat of an identity crisis and just making life, let alone education, seemingly impossible at the time.
Now, in your honor:
I take my ambition, your inspiration, our confidence, our love:
And I become Balto.
Balto is a real-life hero to his community. He knows exactly what the village kids need, and he'll run for miles through the blistering cold, wind, and snow to get it - alone if he has to.
I've never been one to succeed in academic environments, but....
I know I can do this. I want this. It will make me happy. It will make children happy. It will enable me to become the person I truly want to become. And you KNEW I could do it too.
And when I receive my diploma, I'll look to wherever the sun is shining and I'll smile at you and say "thank you for believing in me".