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Traumas. Rejection. Deep Darkness.

I will never forget the moment I truly learned that my peers could be quite cruel. I grew up and was raised in a loving Christian home. I knew at a very young age, not by anyone telling me, that this internal, mental, and emotional prison I was in was not God's heart for me. I knew of good and evil, light and darkness at a very young age. I had seen and experienced things that shook me to my core as a child.

One day while in grade 1 or so, I remember this one little friend asking me at recess why I was the way I was. The best my 7 year old self could describe it as was "I am not sure. But this is not God; He is good. The devil is not a nice person." Sadly, that is the day that I learnt that not everyone thought or believed like me. That day, kids started teasing me and saying "Melanie has a devil in her"; my innocent little mind and heart were shattered and rudely awakened.

You see, very early on, I would have horrifying nightmares. Sometimes I was truly afraid to fall asleep. I constantly dreamt of spirits chasing me. Many of them. Frequently these dreams would consist of these things haunting me and chasing me, with me never being able to shut the doors in my dream (they would always been too small from the frame). All while franticly searching for my mother. Other times these things would be trying to strangle me in bed in my dream and I could not utter a word. For ages that is what I experienced. Time after time after time. I would wake up screaming bloody murder and one of my parents would come rushing, pray with me, stay with me until I fell back asleep. Sometimes it would be so intense that I would end up in the washroom puking after the whole ordeal. I am fortunate to have had praying parents who knew the power of the name of Jesus.

As grade 1 and 2 progressed, I began to see that not everyone would accept me. Especially with the "odd" disorder I was living with. There was no one else walking with selective mutism in my school and for many teachers and students this was a first. The amount of teasing and humiliation I would go through on a regular basis, I cannot even truly describe for you. When you are trapped inside of yourself and cannot utter a word when you are being ridiculed is sheer horror and degrading. I knew depression far too early. I knew of those deep dark emotions way too soon. I knew of this deep dark pit and prison that was so cold and lonely. I knew what it was to bottle things quick. How to shut down. How to become numb. I hated myself tremendously. Inside and out. I hated my life. I would go home and cry after school simply wishing to know how to be normal and how to get out of this prison. I remember a few little boys at that time who would threaten to hurt me or even kill me and chase me through the trail I would take from school to home. Fear seeped deeper into my life and became far too great a reality. They knew I could not say a word in those moments and I felt so trapped. I They would laugh when they would see my face in fright and panic. I feared and became ridiculously anxious when one of my little girl friends could not walk home with me. After a few weeks of this going on, I cannot remember if a friend had said something or if my parents eventually spoke to my teacher and principal. But it came to a halt and pretty quickly. Those boys started being nice to me as time progressed.

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