Remembering Those Hungry eyes... by Patricia Ann June 25, 2022
I am writing this as a testimony of an experience I had as a child and how grateful and humbled I am that my Father in Heaven has always protected me.
I am not sure how old I was, maybe eight or nine years old. We were at my Aunt Carolyn's house on Thanksgivng Day. My dad came from a family of 10 kids, so the family gatherings on holidays were always big and inviting. Everyone was always welcome! I was a shy child, and always stayed pretty close to where my mom was, but this day, I went into my uncles bedroom where my cousins were playing with toys. Uncle John always had a lot of toys in his room. He and my aunt had separate rooms. Nobody seemed to question it. That's just the way it was. And my cousins just seemed to love playing with those toys in that bedroom.
My mom was sitting in the dining room on a folding chair near John's room, so I guess I felt pretty safe venturing off the few feet into Uncle John's room to see what my cousin's were doing. But, when I went into the room, all I can remember is those eyes! Uncle John's eyes were like none I had ever seen before. They were scary, as they looked down at me and I remember quickly leaving the room and going straight to my mom's side and stayed beside her for the rest of the day.
I didn't tell anybody for years. But, I remembered those eyes! I still remember those eyes...
Then, I remember when I was in the 6th grade, my neighbor, Susan, who was a year ahead of me in school was taken away from her family and put into a foster home. Her step-dad had gotten her pregnant and taken her to get an abortion. I can remember seeing her in school with her stomach getting bigger and bigger, but I was young and didn't know what had happened to her. Of course, I was not allowed to go to their house any longer. One day years later, I remembered a day when I was at my neighbor's house playing and I had seen those same eyes that Uncle John had, but this was my friend's step-dad. My neighbor! I remember my parents had to testify in court about if they knew anything about what had happened to Susan. Her step-dad was put in jail.
Fast forward to the year 1999. That is the year Uncle John's secrets came out. Everyone was in shock!
I remember my parents and other relatives saying they wish they knew, or others saying they thought that they were the only one and so they didn't tell. Uncle John made them feel special.
Surely my Aunt Carolyn knew, yet she and others kept quiet and allowed it to continue to happen.
Those hungry eyes that I saw that Thanksgivng day that caused me to run away to my mother's side, were the eyes of a pedophile who over the course of 40 + years had sexually abused his children and young family members, as well as kids in the community that he had hired to help him on his farm. Over 500 children had been abused at the hands of this man.
He made each one feel special or maybe even threatened some, but they never told. Finally, a single child told the truth and it led to the investigation and imprisonment of John. He didn't like prison and threatened my Aunt for years, until he finally died in prison.
Over the years, my heart has hurt for those whom John hurt physically and emotionally. HIs actions put them in a mental prison of confusion, secrets and lies. These were my aunts, uncles, cousins and kids that I went to school with. Nobody knew. In 40+ years nobody told, so nobody knew.
It has been almost 50 years, since I walked into Uncle John's room and saw those hungry eyes of a pedophile. I didn't know about those eyes. But, he looked at me like I was a piece of candy. It was like he wanted me. I just never understood why the other kids wanted to go play in his room, but I guess it is because he had already made each one feel "special".
I haven't shared this story with anybody until now, but it happened and I just don't want to leave the truth hiding in the darkness any longer.
I just want anybody who is being or has been abused to know that it isn't your fault.
And it isn't anything to be ashamed of or kept secret.
John's sin and pedophile behavior went on for over 40 years because nobody told what happened to them.
Pedophiles are skilled manipulators, liars and they are hungry for children.
I saw those eyes when I was a little girl and I ran away from them to stand at my mom's protective side.
And I also never told that he scared me wth those eyes. I didn't know what to say or how to say it.
I will never forget those hungry eyes that scared me and I am thankful that both of those evil men ended up in prison.
I am humbled and grateful that Jesus kept me safe and I was not abused by those men.
I am humbled and grateful that I had discernment, even as a little girl to turn away from the evil.
My prayer for today is that for anyone who has been abused by a pedophile's extreme actions and mental abuse, just know that it was not your portion in this life. You were just in the wrong place at the wrong time with a monster disguised as someone who loved and cared about you. It is okay to be angry, but do not allow the anger to rule over your life. Jesus knows what happened and He loves you the Most. His heart broke along with yours, but He caught your tears in a bottle and He wrapped HIs arms around you as you cried those tears. Jesus calmed you and gave you strength to go on and it is because of Jesus that you are reading this today.
He wants you to use your own testimony to help others who have been abused. It isn't easy to share our story, but it is necessary to help others heal.
Never a victim, but always a victor with Jesus. Forgiveness is the key to moving forward.
Telling our testimony is the key to overcoming.
And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death. Revelations 12:11
You've got this! You've got Jesus!
Love and blessings to all, peace and victory.