Weekly, I spend time with a special girl, I call her Sylvia. We never really know what is on her mind, but when I look at her speaking eyes, I imagine she thinks the following…
“See that girl, in the bed, that’s me. I am Sylvia and I am eight years old. For some time now, I live in a big building together with many other children. Before I came here, I lived with a foster mom, but suddenly I had to leave….., ending up here in my bed, I live, sit, sleep and eat in my bed.
But sometimes, when I look outside I see a van driving by, which makes me very happy because I know what that means. A woman comes to my bed next and I will be allowed to get out of the bed put on my nice shoes which are in the closet. I put on my jacket and my cap by myself and I get to go in the van. I like this very much, I go to play in a different house, in a house where people are singing, where I can freely walk around, they call this house the daycare. But after a morning at the daycare, I have to go back, back to my bed… but I dont want to go back to my bed, my small bed. I want to walk, run, play and discover! I can’t do this in my bed, I am so bored.
When I am put in my bed, I get so angry and sad that I start hurting myself. I hit my head on the side of my wooden bed… I really don’t know why I do this. I feel pain, but I can’t stop myself.
I don’t talk, I do not know how to talk, I cannot say what I want, think or feel… but I understand what other people say. They say I am a bad child; they say I am a girl that hits, and that I am difficult because I break things. Sometimes they do not say anything, but in their faces I can read what they are thinking.
Actually, I want to say many things, I want to say “help me”, “talk to me”, “give me a hug”. I really want people to see me, I want people to like me, I really want to sit on someone’s lap and be held. I really want people to talk to me even though I do not reply to them.
But sometimes I do not understand what I feel, and I push you away from me, I am scared, scared of you, scared of myself, and you, you are scared of me.”