Security and life are the meaning of my name. I am Princess Tamar born to King David and Queen Maachah the second child of their union and only royal daughter born to King David. Many people have read only a snapshot of my life which is full of darkness and unspeakable pain most readers only see those dark colors of my life story boldly glaring them in the face. To many the story ends as quickly as it began there in the sacred text. They make quick judgements based on small understanding and due to the sensitive subject matter they have no interest in the deeper meaning as to why my story is even in the place it is in the scared text. It is a story that is normally read over rather quickly leaving the reader to feel confused and overcome by strong and different emotions invoked by the sensitive subjects that take place within the storyline. The brave readers that make it through go on to read about my father and my younger half-brother Solomon and soon forget about me. As many other heroines in the scared text my story becomes the background story for the much greater story being told. My life has been taught, told and understood as one of privilege and pain. If you only breeze through my story and don’t stop to ponder nor take the time to inquirer further to delve deeper to ask provoking questions and wait for answers it may seem like privilege and pain are two polar opposites barely being held together in a fragile balance by the much greater story going on in and around mine. The two polar opposites I am speaking of are the privilege being that I am(was) a royal, a Princess, a daughter of the most revered well known, highly favored king in my nations time my father the one the only king David of Israel. Just mentioning my family name sake can bring about many remembered and favored stories as well as emotions in one’s mind. The pain is from being part of a dysfunctional royal family. Where the dysfunction is never private and not only did the people of my time know most of our private matters for they played out very publically. It also ends up in the most famous book of the world for all to see for all time. Don’t get me wrong I am honored to be used of the highest but like any of us who have any type of dysfunction in our private life we’d rather keep it that way. PRIVATE! However hindsight is 20/20 and always gold. There is a strange beauty in having your dysfunction exposed. It somehow makes it easy to breathe out. To bravely search out what you believe to be true and live it out loud. No matter the strange beauty it brings it still doesn’t make the opinions or judgements of others any easier to take. My portion of the story as typically read in its seemingly awkward placement in the sacred text isn’t the end or the beginning of my life. It is only the middle and in the grand scheme of things it is so very small but not less important. For you and hundreds of thousands of other readers it is just a story a snippet of time a blink in the eye of the face of history but for me it was my life. I having lived my life know my life better than anyone I know there is more to my story than meets the eye that hasn’t been searched out and told until now.
Here in this scroll I wish to invite you to go deeper with me as I tell you my life story from my eyes and lips to your ears told from my experiences and perspective. I can confirm this is a story about family, love, bitterness, envy, jealousy, privilege, power, pain & most importantly redemption. That last word is especially sweet to me for in my time being redeemed was held as a high value a treasure that couldn’t be bought or sold and not something to be taken casually. For my people, my nation our life surrounded the concept of being separate and redeemed in and out clean and unclean, apart but separate. All of which surrounded our G-d the highest. The highest rescued and redeemed us from slavery and made an unbreakable covenant with our nations fore fathers. The great Archetypes Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob the list is endless. Some might ask how one woman that was taken to the depths of every negative emotion can be a candidate for redemption? When at the bottom of life the only way to go is up. Redemption is a wonderful and mysterious thing that can only be explained by one word LOVE. By the end of this book my wish for the readers is that they may freely glean from my story the purest insight, inspiration, hope and a new outlook on Tamar who I was before, during and after the story told in the most controversial sacred text in all of history called and known as the bible. Also that they may see that even though dark colors are used the highest still can make the most beautiful masterpieces of one’s life. For without the dark colors no one would be able to see the highlights. Striking the eye of the beholder against a rather dark background. In reading the sacred text you might get caught up on certain inevitable parts which might make you miss the richness and depth of my life and story all together. Deeper still is the story of humanity and its maker, the creative force behind the curtain the eternal redeemer for us all. I ask that for now you put aside for a moment everything you think you know about me. Insight is a gift from the divine it leads to understanding and from understanding we can apply the knowledge to bring fourth growth. Even if you cannot relate to everything in my story my highest wish for you is that you take from it the wisdom and the lessons that should be derived from it and understand so that you may apply and grow. If you are ready to begin so am I.
Life can get messy fast rather you are the daughter of an earthly king or not. We all are brought into the world as we know it through one thing sex. Two people coming together to bring fourth life. It is one of the many things we don’t get to choose who we are born to . and how we are born. That is the scared magic of the highest that out of nothing he forms something. From two he makes one. Our Family is predetermined for us no matter what comes with it. We all are given life through a woman’s canal and brought into this world. Many labels were placed upon me before I even drew my first breath all of which came from being born to a king. Mans use of Labels is a system that was first deployed in the garden the highest gave Adam the right to name things as he desired. Using labels in that way in and of itself is not wrong. However as time went on and sin became more rampant man uses it as a system to define who we are and how we see others and how others should perceive us. We also use it to let those around us know what and who we are. Words carry power for it was with words that the highest created. Good words used to define bring about healing and growth but bad words used to define bring about death. Most people use words for the latter. If you let the words they will have power over you and your life. Shockingly being the king’s daughter didn’t shield me to controversy or that of unfair labels. It did the opposite. Sometimes we are labeled by another’s family member’s actions because of that person’s position and authority over our lives the labels cast upon us by others and ourselves for the actions of that one person seem to stick rather they are true or not. Being born to a king you are given very little wiggle room to freely develop who you are before others began telling you who they envision you to be. Royals leave nothing to chance. Before I was born I had councils meeting to discuss whom they thought I was I had both my father and mother hoping I’d be this way or that and of course the nation had its ideals for me as well.
You might be asking how I Tamar got to the point in my life where I was bitterly betrayed by those who should’ve been protecting me. Even the daughter of a king can hold hands with so many things one being abuse. What does it mean to hold hands with abuse? It means that we take an active role in the abuse we are receiving by letting it define us rather than us defining it. We willingly play the victim and give our power away to those who are no more powerful than us. We have decided to accept the abuse and the labels it brings to us as the truth. We even go as far as willingly giving ourselves our own false labels and start to tell others around us that is who and what we are and will be known as forever. We leave no room for change of how we view ourselves or others. Life is about choices even not choosing is a choice. Having known what it is like to be deeply betrayed by those that are to protect and honor you will make even the strongest person doubt themselves. I know what it is like to be cast down by the heaviness of shame. I know what it is like to be over looked where you want to melt into the background and disappear to the point where other people began to freely place their preconceived thoughts and ideas upon you and you can’t remember who and what the original you was. Causing you to be forcefully pushed aside by those you hold in high esteem and close to your heart. I know what it means to not know who you are because everyone else around you is so EGO Huge you get lost in their overcast. When one doesn’t know themselves they are like a leaf in the wind blown here and there ripped apart by other people’s false identity of you. Instead of being able to with stand false identities you gladly accept them until one day you are faced with no other option than to rise up and be who you were created to be unashamedly. You feel lost when you should be found. I know what it feels like to feel everyone around you is fairly or unfairly judging you based on relation to those in your life. Always comparing not knowing they are bringing about silently loud shame to the hearer of those so called innocent judgements and labels. When we are compared to others and not loved for who we are it brings about shame. Shame is powerful it seeks to destroy the pure and defile the innocent. It makes you doubt your original pure self the divine spark which is within all of us and free from man’s judgement. It is hard to have self-perceived honor when those around you have none because of their sinful private actions you are pulled into a whirlwind of consequences you feel you have no control over. Simply because they hold powerful positions in your life and for their actions you now have more than your share of labels and expectations being tossed at you. We all are connected No one stands alone for every action there is a reaction. We all affect each other in ways we are not equipped to fully understand. The most powerful is normally unseen. There are forces at work that are picked up by our subconscious mind and played out in our conscious world.
I am acquainted with longing for a father’s love, attention and comfort. Only to have those needs neglected. Not always intentionally but none the less a need is a need and when unmet it festers. Constantly having to put on the face of perfection and not fully understanding what perfection means. Perceived as the reflection of not only your father the king but of an entire nation I know the shame that comes from family sin that seeks to overshadow any one person and seeks to overtake whole generations. Sin that you had nothing to do with yet its consequences affect the very delicate soul fiber of your life. Sin that weaves itself into your family as wool is weaved into a fine garment. Sin that is intricately intertwined passed down from father to son and afflicts the wives and daughters. Many things in life seek to label us and define us but it is us that must define ourselves and our lives. All thanks and highest praises to Adonai for it is he who makes all things possible and has given us a way to redeem ourselves no matter what circumstances we are born in. Ultimately it is not other people nor ourselves that define us yet it is the highest. Whew! Now please let me formally introduce myself again and begin my life review. I am the daughter of royal blood on both sides. My father is King David anointed king placed to rule over Israel by the almighty G-d himself. Princess Maachah of Geshur daughter of the King of Talmai is my mother. In order to understand me we must start with my parents first as individuals and then as a unit. If you don’t mind I would like to start with my mother because many don’t understand her story which gives life to mine. Also because being my father’s wife you live life in his shadow no matter how great or minor your start is in life. The few words given to my mother in the sacred text far from tell you everything you need to know about her life.
The few words are just a snapshot of her life and nothing more. In order to know someone you must investigate them as a whole get to know them as well as you can before making snap judgments about them. I’m afraid to say I think many don’t even think deeper about my mother other than she is one of my father’s many wives. Yes I am aware that in your time you have a saying that a picture is worth one thousand words but what that saying leaves out is we all come to look at any picture with our life’s experiences, tastes, feelings, judgments and so on all wrapped up in a pair of invisible rose colored glasses. Sometimes we need reminding to take those off and get a fresh look in order to fully understand the picture we are seeing. One’s life is made up by many events some leading to major events that try (please note the key word is try) to define us. My mother was a royal princess daughter of Talmai the king of Geshur. The Geshurites weren’t apart of Israel but more like in between. Back when my nation was leaving slavery to Egypt. The highest showed them were to dwell and they drove out many people but my mother’s people and other’s didn’t get driven out. My mother came from a beautiful city whose entrance was guarded by 30ft high walls and the Geshurites moon idol. The Geshurites worshiped many idols the moon being one of the main idols at the time. Talmai was my mother’s father and also the King of Geshur. The Geshurites were as ancient to the land as anyone can remember. You may know them as Canaanites or Aramean’s. My mother’s people weren’t like my fathers they believed in many Gods and freely worshipped them as they saw fit. It is rumored that my mother didn’t care much for my father when he first arrived at the time he was living in Hebron which wasn’t as rich a land as Geshur. Hebron was small and ugly in comparison to my mother’s homeland Geshur. Over time my father won my mother over for the highest was with him. So deep was the love for my father and his G-d my mother left all her idols to worship only his G-d and his G-d became her G-d. She saw how my father’s G-d was with him and his people and even her being a former idol worshiper couldn’t deny his God’s existence and power. My mother was well acquainted with idol worship for she was the princess of idol worshipers however it had always left her feeling confused, empty and as if the many gods of the Geshurite people were petty and cruel as man even more fickle because it always seemed they were changing. As she explains it once you know the truth and experience it for yourself you’d be a fool to ignore it. Mother was no fool and she knew that unity in family was important. She also respected my father for he didn’t force her as many kings did to accept his G-d as hers. He was open to gentle debate and as he would say it. The proof was on his side. The lord was with my father and everyone knew it.
My mother’s father had tried to live in peace with Israel’s first King Saul. As my mother told he was never comfortable giving her to Saul for marriage for my grandfather could see he struggled with sanity and even though my grandfather didn’t have a problem using my mother for political gain he knew that fully aligning with Saul would bring about death and sadness for my mother but more importantly his successful campaign to merge with my father’s people. The Geshurite people had lived among my father’s people for a long time. Some would argue they were there before my father’s people had wiped every other tribe out on their way out of Egypt except for them and another tribe. As history shows like any other two sets of people dwelling in the same place amongst each other having different beliefs all hadn’t always been well between the two people. Once Saul’s grip had begun to loosen he aligned with my father. My grandfather wasn’t a dumb man he saw that Saul wasn’t as honorable as my father David. Maybe one of my grandfather’s many seers’ told him that my father was the highest God’s choice. My grandfather didn’t wish to upset any G-d especially one as powerfully active as Israel’s. After careful consideration on my grandfather’s part my mother was given to King David as a political move. How else can one guarantee lifelong peace but to give one’s daughter as a way to establish and cement it?
My father’s life is well known a man attributed to many things. Some know my father as a musician, some as a poet and psalm writer, to others a famous lover and to others who crossed him or his G-d he was a savage warrior. War wasn’t a stranger to my father from the moment G-d had picked him to lead his people he had been fighting. In the middle of his life my father was a fierce man of war anyone that crossed him was lucky to get away with his life. Before he was crowned king he was on the run from King Saul. My father had single handedly taken the life of a Giant known as Goliath and many of our nation’s enemies. It is well known that in order for my father to marry Saul’s daughter he had to not only kill but bring the foreskin of a hundred philistines. Talmai my grandfather was an astute man and he chose to align with David over Saul. For he had heard the rumors of my father’s many victories and he knew this man was highly favored by the highest.
My mother was the golden stamp on the peace treaty between two kings and two kingdoms. What was required for her was advancing the political interests of Geshur, expand King David’s reach in the land and provide Royal Heirs. Fortunately, for my mother she produced three my eldest brother Absalom, me Tamar and our baby brother Hanan. As little children we lived with our mother in the King’s harem not the common one for concubines but the royal quarters set aside for Queen’s as was custom in those days. To some the harem was the most beautiful part of my father’s palace but they being facetious are only referring to the many wives and concubines of my father. My early days were happy times for the most part. We had the best of everything thanks to my mother’s dowry and the favor she had with my father the king and his many advisors for having born the King his first son from a king’s daughter. Don’t get me wrong it’s nowhere as near to the favor of being the king’s favorite but when you are wife number four you will take any favor you can get. This wasn’t my father’s first princess bride.
My father had been married to King Saul’s daughter but no heirs came from that union. Mikael was very interesting she like my mother was from royalty however unlike my mother she didn’t play her part as the king’s first wife very well. Except for that time she did save his life but that moment pales in comparison to the way she tried to shame my father when he brought back the Ark of the Covenant. The philistines had taken the ark away from my people and took it to Ashdod they placed the Ark of the highest in their idols Dagon’s and set it beside the idol. When the people arose early the next day their idol had fallen on his face before the ark and they placed it back up in his place the next morning when they arose they saw the same thing except his hands and head had been cut off in the idol temple next to the ark of the highest. This caused a great panic in their camp and they began to move the ark of the highest about different places amongst them and in every place the people were afflicted with tumor. Finally the philistines said let’s give this ark back for if we keep it we shall die. The philistines took council among themselves and it was determined that they needed to return the ark as well as give gifts of gold to the highest. They made a cart just for the ark and brought it outside of Beth Shamash. The people rejoiced when they saw the ark returning to them and sent word to Kiriath Jearim saying the philistines have returned the ark come and retrieve it. Men from Kiriath Jearim came and brought the ark the Abinadab’s house on the hill and consecrated his son Eleazar to guard the ark. The ark remained in Kiriath Jearim for 20yrs before my father brought together 30,000 young and able men to go get the ark and bring it to Jerusalem. On the procession to the capital the highest displayed his holiness to my nation. For the ark being pure gold was heavy the ox puling the cart stumbled and a man by the name of Uzzah reached out his hand to take hold of the ark to steady it. That was wrong because he had disobeyed the law of the highest that only Preist were allowed to handle the ark of the highest. My father was afraid at the lord’s display of wrath and didn’t want to bring the ark into the city. He placed the ark in the house of Obed-Edom the Gittite. The ark was there for 3 months and the lord richly blessed Obed. The king was told of how the household of Obed was blessed because of the ark. So my father went to bring the ark into the city. My father was a passionate man who loved to dance and worship before the Lord and be among his people for he didn’t always see himself as a king by that of earthly status but by G-d’s. When he became overcome by his emotions and took off his clothes while dancing Mikael became embarrassed by my father’s actions. She was acting out of fear that the young maidens might aspire to behold my father in all his glory. There is nothing scarier than a jealous spouse. I don’t understand how at that insatiable moment where the climax of my people getting the seat of G-d returned to them how she could be so concerned with my father. Yes if it was any other occasion I may side with her but this was a victory orchestrated by the hands of G-d and instead of being worried about how others chose to worship and adore him maybe she should have been worried about how she was doing at that very moment. Unfortunately for her she was more concerned with how my father’s behavior reflected on her and scolded my father for daring to dance unrobed in front of his people for that she lost favor with the king for the rest of her days she remained childless. It has been said she went on and on and dared to compare her father Saul to David she tried to deeply shame him in a way a wife should never do to her husband. She should’ve known something’s don’t need to be said in the way anger makes us say them.
She was indeed her father’s daughter. We children don’t fall far from the tree. For that she was bitter and hated every wife and child that came after. My mother managed as best she could to steer clear of her. As I said before my mother was my father’s fourth wife and the other women that came before let her know it in any way they could. Mother was beautiful in every way but she carried darkness under the name of loneliness in her heart only seen by the peering eyes of those closest to her. Mother like many of my father’s wives had many lonely nights left alone without a husband by her side. You would think that would bring the women closer together but it did just the opposite. It fed into their insecurities of not being enough to be my father’s only wife. All women no matter what station in life they have deal with insecurities.
My mother privately dealt with jealousy from my father’s other wives for having beautiful well behaved children and from being from a royal bloodline. To top it all off she had to go and bare the first fully royal son my eldest brother Absalom. She tried as best she could to deal with her own feelings of jealousy knowing my father’s heart never truly belonged to anyone except G-d and that his perceived favorite bride was Bathsheba. My mother was gracious and tried her hardest to not mistreat the other wives no matter how they treated her. As the royal family you learn to put on a brave face when out in the public but behind the palace and harem doors there were lots and lots of gossip. If it wasn’t the wives talking, it was the concubines, and if not the concubines it was the maids and if not the maids it was the eunuchs and so on and so on. One rarely has any real privacy growing up in the palace or its haram.
My father unlike my mother wasn’t born into a royal family. He was called of God to be king from a Shepard’s field. That’s right my father before he was called and anointed King he was a Shepard. My father’s father was Jesse and they lived in Bethlehem at the time the Prophet Samuel went and anointed my father to be king. Please bear with me for one second as I explain how extraordinary the Prophet Samuel was. He also came from a mother whose faith was great. His mother was Hannah it is widely known she was a barren woman. Hannah knew the secret of prayer and she labored in its secrets praying for a male child that she could give back to Hashem for his service. His mother labored in prayer so inside herself there were no words coming from her mouth only groaning’s and soul utterances. The priest going about his daily duties entered the place for women and saw her mouth moving and no words coming out she looked awkward and he thought she was drunk. However Hashem heard her heart and answered her prayer she bore the Prophet Samuel. Samuel was no ordinary child for he grew up in the temple and heard from Hashem at a tender age so when he spoke people listened. As the story is told King Saul had disobeyed G-d he hadn’t followed all instructions given by the mouth of the Prophet Samuel to kill and destroy all the Amalekites. He was to wipe them off the face of the earth for the Prophet said when the children of Israel were coming out of Egypt the nation of Amalek attacked them in the rear where the weakest were left unprotected. For that the Lord vowed to return the attack on them except none would survive.
As it is written I the highest all powerful am going to make Amalek pay! Go and attack them and all their possessions. Don’t have pity. Kill their men, women, children, babies and all of the animals. Saul didn’t fully obey the Lord’s command and kept the things he saw as valuable. So the Lord said unto Samuel I am sorry I made Saul king for he has stopped obeying me. Samuel knew the great cost of disobedience for he was there when Eli’s sons were struck dead by the lord for foolishly dishonoring the women and the highest and when Eli didn’t discipline them the highest said he would take the priest hood away from his line and give it to another. However Samuel didn’t fare any better for his sons also were struck dead by the highest for similar sin as well. As it is known to my people obedience is better than sacrifice. For how can G-d lead you unless you obey his words?
The prophet was angry and cried out to G-d in prayer all night. When the prophet finally caught up with King Saul he tried to deceive the Prophet and said to him he had done all that the Lord had asked. Samuel said if that is so why do I hear sheep and cattle? Saul blamed the army for having taken the sheep and cattle and said they were planning on sacrificing them to G-d but everything else was destroyed. Samuel could listen no more and said STOP let me tell you what G-d said to me last night. The Lord chose you and made you king you didn’t do this yourself.
When G-d sent you on the mission to fully wipe out the Amalekites why didn’t you fully obey and do just that? Instead you have chosen to keep the king and the best animals alive that has made the lord very angry. Saul seeing the disdain upon Samuel’s face confessed he was afraid of his army and failed to listen and obey G-d. Saul begged Samuel to stay with him and worship because he didn’t want the people to know the highest favor had left him. Saul thought that by having Samuel stay and worship with him he could find favor from G-d again and not have to pay. However Samuel said this very day you have lost the kingdom it has been ripped away from you. Saul being overcome with grief grabbed the Prophets robe and said please don’t leave.
Samuel said the lord has already given your kingdom to someone better than you. G-d isn’t human nor does he change his mind. Saul finally admitted his sin and begged Samuel again to go and worship with him. Samuel agreed to go and offer sacrifices to the highest. In the midst of them worshiping Samuel shouted for the king of the Amalekites to be brought before him for he knew what had to be done. Right there before Saul and his army Samuel slaughtered the king and all the animals for he had a righteous anger in him for he had seen what happens when people disobey the highest they pay dearly with their lives after having done what Saul was supposed to do Samuel left Saul. Samuel was overcome with sadness because he loved Saul he was deeply troubled for Saul and the highest knew it. The lord said to him I’ve rejected Saul and I refuse to let him be king any longer. Stop feeling sad about him and go put some olive oil in a small container and go to visit a man named Jesse who sojourns in Bethlehem. I’ve chosen one of his sons to be my king. Samuel felt if Saul found out what he was doing he would have him killed so G-d told him to take an animal to sacrifice and tell the people that is why he is there. When Samuel arrived he invited Jesse to bring his sons to the sacrifice and when they got there he saw my father’s eldest brother Eliab.
Samuel thought my father’s brother must be the one the lord has made his new king because he was tall and good-looking like Saul but G-d said to Samuel don’t be fooled by the outer looks of man. People judge by the outward looks of man but I judge by the heart. Jesse my father’s father made all 7 sons pass before the prophet but the lord hadn’t chosen any of them so Samuel said to Jesse are these all your sons? Jesse said no my youngest is in the field tending the sheep. Jesse called for him and as my father tells it he was in the field praying to G-d that very moment thanking him for how wonderful he is.
As soon as my father saw Samuel he knew who he was as did Samuel know who my father was G-d’s chosen one to be anointed king over my nation. At this time my father’s cheeks were red for he had been out all day in the sun tending the sheep but Samuel noticed his big beautiful eyes and how handsome my father was. Samuel got up and poured the oil over my father’s head and at that moment he became the highest chosen king. My father began to play his harp and praise the lord for he loved him. All things in the highest time for even though my father was his choice he had a long way to go before he was the people’s choice. It wasn’t long before my father was called to play the harp for King Saul because the King was tormented by evil spirits and only found peace from them when my father played for him. My father had the lord’s favor where ever he went. For even the king’s only son Johnathan adored my father and pledge allegiance to him over his own father’s line. For he knew his father was gone and not the man he had grown up knowing. I have always sympathized with any king’s children for I know it’s not easy to be born royal. However I must say this I think Johnathan is a good choice for any royal to follow because by his actions you knew he loved and feared the highest G-d.
My father was many things to many people and all of it for the most part is true. My father taught us all to love G-d and worship him. That was the most important to my father that everyone knew G-d as he did. I loved listening to him talk about G-d and all the things he did for my Dad. My father would tell us stories of how he conquered giants and how he fought ten thousand men and won. Oh so many stories my father could go on and on if we let him. One story he didn’t talk about often was how King Saul had tried to kill my father many times even on his wedding night to Princess Mikael Saul’s daughter my father’s first wife as mentioned before.
Sadness griped my father’s life during that time in his life it taught him a lot. My father never wanted to end up like Saul. My father said he knew G-d would do something great with his life for he would talk to him hours on end when he was tending the sheep in the field. My father loved learning about G-d and singing songs of praise to him out in the field. He would always joke that shepherds have two choices for comfort in the fields either the very sheep they are tending or the highest of course my father chose the latter. My father would say he learned much tending sheep and that is why he could rule our people so well because people and sheep have a lot in common. The court would break into thunderous laughter whenever my father would tell tales of his sheep hoarding days. For me it was always amusing because I didn’t know my father as anything other than King.
My father is a brave man but he is also known to be very tender. People of your time would say he was the first Renaissance man in every definition of the word. Whenever my father was around us I loved being near him and having him show me his favor. Nothing filled me with as much joy as a single smile of approval from my father. I say I was my father’s daughter always doing anything to get his attention. I understood why his wives felt like there wasn’t enough of him to go around by my being a daughter and not a son. There was something magical about my dad everyone loved him, everyone needed him and depended upon him and when he was on there was so much light and love around him that he himself was like an earthly sun. Listen to me I sound as if I made an idol out of my dad. I adored my dad just like many of the people in our kingdom.
As a child growing up in my father’s house I felt safe. I had to learn how to be a princess. Not only did I have my teachers, tutors, nannies, and maids watching me correcting me but I had the added pressure of my mother’s and my father’s other wives watchful eyes. In defense of my mother she was warm and nurturing making sure to always reassure me that it was a privilege to be both her and my father’s only daughter. She knew I was going to be like her one day a king’s wife and was hoping I would be given to a man like my father. By that I mean not a drunkard, fool, or abuser of his wives. My mother had learned to love my father as did most of his wives. She wished I would be a king’s first wife and bare sons as she had done for my father but most of all her secret desire for my future marriage was I would be my beloved’s favorite and only wife. She didn’t want me to feel the sting she and the other lonely wives felt. Because in my time a man of status having multiple wives was the norm don’t think for one second it didn’t mean heavy emotions. All one has to do is look back on the relationship of Jacob and his wives and Abraham. It never worked out well for the woman or the man I say the latter with a smile on my face because a man would have to be half fool to think he alone could fully please one woman let alone two. Of course in public they would try hard not to make the private tensions known because community meant survival but we all are human and so we have desirers to be the favorite even in the most unusual circumstances by whoever is in charge. And if you don’t it’s because you are in charge and someone is seeking your favor rather you realize it or not.
My mother knew that this secret desire she had of me being the only wife to a king for that time was rare for any man of status. She tried to hide her pain from her children especially me. I was a curious child always seeking to know more. My mother being so beautiful and feminine I would study her the hardest. I wanted to be just like her and have all eyes on me. I wanted to command a room as she did but her beauty to her seemed unknown. At nights the ones where I had a hard time falling asleep or just plain rebelled against it I would sneak to her chambers in the haram and watch her without her knowing. My mother didn’t know her secret was also mine I wanted to be my husband’s only wife or at least his favorite. I like any young girl dreamed of my husband from the time I understood what husbands were. My mother was so fascinating to me how she carried herself was spell binding to all that gazed upon her especially me. Her form was pleasing to the eye. Her skin dark like the tents of Kedar as soft as a sheep’s under belly and it would glisten under the moonlight. Her hair was dark, long, full of curls she normally wore it in braids and kept covered when in public but on the rare occasions she wore it down it was breath taking. It perfectly surrounded her face and framed her best features.
In her chambers she was allowed to let her hair down and it was a sight to see. Her long thick curly black hair down to her waist sometimes she’d let me play in her hair she kept her hair being fully uncovered all her natural beauty only for my father’s eyes. I wondered if he knew how lucky he was to behold my mother in all her glory. I never did get to see what came next after my mother took her hair down because my maid would always find me and quickly take me back to my room. In my room I would dream about when I would uncover my hair for my beloved and he would gently caress my hair in its entirety. I loved to watch my mother prepare for the special nights when she would get ready for my father’s visits. Her maids would attend to her helping to immerse herself in the ritual bath and make sure everything was just right for them to be together. Mother would prepare my father’s favorite foods and make sure her chambers were set just right for them to be alone. You could smell my mother’s oils in the air. Her scent wasn’t a harsh one but one of flowers heated to just the right temperature to make them release there vibrant scent. I could only hope to be all that she was when I came of age. The king when he was around my mother delighted in fondling the fluffy parts of my mother’s body for he couldn’t resist my mother’s charms. He would recite poems to her that he wrote for her. That would tell of her beauty and the things he enjoyed most about my mom. He delighted in my mother’s gentle ways for she never forgot she was most powerful when in her feminine nature. One most remember my mother was brought up in the arts of how to keep a king happy and that she did when given the chance.
I remember he would sometimes play music for her as a way to prepare them both for what was to come later between a husband and his wife. My father was very gentle with all his brides and was a master at wooing women. It was rumored that no woman could resist my father and none dared say no to his advances. To deny the king meant taking one’s life in their hands. My mother shared with me that she adored my father’s touch and his kisses and wished for me to enjoy my husband’s advances as much as she and the other women enjoyed my dad. She said not every wife is as lucky to have a man as gentle and loving as my father. Her and my father made sure I wasn’t to be given to a man of force. I would see sometimes she would comfort herself on the nights when she longed for my father but couldn’t have him because he was with another wife or concubine.
Or just didn’t have any interest in her for that evening. I would be so sad watching my mother cry herself to sleep clutching the blankets on the nights she knew she had been push aside for that evening for another of my father’s chosen ones charms. I always made sure never to bring that up to my mother for fear that she would be shamed by me knowing her deepest secrets. In that way I never wanted to experience that type of rejection or loneliness. However I knew my chances of missing those feelings was slim. I wasn’t alone in watching my father’s wives the king’s sons loved gazing at many of my father’s wives and concubines it brought them some weird joy. That gave me an uneasy feeling because I knew they weren’t looking for the same reasons I was. I was looking because I wanted to know what it was that made them all so special or find out how they did things that made them unique. My brothers were looking as a way to fill the hormones tank. Even the eunuchs even though they didn’t have working parts couldn’t help but take quick glances at some of my father’s beautiful assets. All knew look quickly is all they could get away with for if a king thought for any moment his property had been defiled G-d bless the man who dared to do the defiling. A child has a unique view of the world and our eyes catch things that some adults wish they didn’t. The only problem is the child usually doesn’t know what to do with the information and soon forgets it but every now and again one may see things that burn into the mind’s eye and nothing can take them away. I had an unfortunate moment like that the time I was wondering around late at night and heard heavy breathing coming from one of the rooms. I went and what I saw can never be removed from my mind. It was my eldest half-brother Amnon having a go at one of the servant girls. All I remember is bodies thrashing about and the noises sounded as if one wasn’t getting enough breath. I can’t be certain but I thought he saw me watching at one point and that seemed to bring some kind of joy to his face. I immediately went back to bed and neither one of us ever spoke of what happened. About that time I stopped wondering around at night looking into other peoples spaces.
However such things are not for a princess to discuss so for now I will not go into more details of my brother’s raging hormones. I was taught a woman’s body is for her husband’s pleasure only as is his body was for hers. Virginity in my day was celebrated and it was far from kept secret. When a king’s daughter became of a certain age she could no longer stay in the harem but was taken to the place set aside for young virgins. In this place we would learn of the things of love and be prepared for the next stage of our life marriage. We were taught many things about ritual bathing, how to keep yourself clean, special prayers and traditions for us the female side of divinity. I was given a beautiful robe that not only identified me as the king’s daughter but also my marital and sexual status. I liked having my own small apartment in the virgin quarters. Yes we were still kept under a watchful eye but it made me feel free. I was allowed to go and visit my mother anytime I wanted and of course there were the shared spaces of the palace.
My father was the youngest of eight boys as I stated before his faith was important to him. He would spend hours upon hours talking with priests, prophets and anyone enlightened in the things of the holy one my father would spend a huge amount of his time worshiping and entreating G-d. He would speak about building a house for G-d. He said his design for G-d’s house was divinely inspired straight from the throne of the holy one himself. I believe building this place to house the spirit of our G-d was my father’s greatest dream. However that wouldn’t happen in his lifetime my father had too much blood on his hands and the highest revealed to him that a son of his would do the building. My father didn’t let that stop him for he collected much of the trappings that would be used in building the highest temple. My father was far from perfect like all of us are and there was much discussion in the palace of a great sin my father committed that resulted in the death of a child he fathered through adultery. My mother sent grievances to my father’s new wife. For she could only imagine the pain and emotions she was feeling. My father’s new wife not only lost a child but also her first husband at the hands of my father. My mother and I had a tender heart towards my father’s new wife for we could only imagine the stigma she felt by how she came to be my father’s wife. Word was that my father had taken her from her husband who was a military hero on the battlefield for our nation. My father was driven by his insatiable lust for Bathsheba he impregnated her during their one night of passion and then killed her husband by putting him in harm’s way in the war after he wouldn’t go home and sleep with his wife to cover up what my father had done.
I found this hard to believe as I told you before I was taught a woman’s body in marriage was for her husband’s pleasure and if any other man lays with her that would be death for both. Unless the woman could prove without the shadow of doubt she had been taken by force. It is part of our holy laws handed down to Moses from G-d on the mountain. Do not covet another’s anything. This news certainly rocked our royal family and my faith in my father. No daughter wants to hear about her father’s private shame and be faced to defend her family’s honor publically. I was so confused and angry with him but I dare not bring it up to him for a daughter is just that a daughter and it was not my place to question my father on such matters let alone willingly let him know I knew of his shame. I think the worst thing about shame is it leaves people alone it puts a fence around them that causes them to go into a downward spiral because of shame you detach and stay detached it a horrible cycle. My father was known for his love of woman for he had many wives and even more concubines. In my day those didn’t bring about shame but taking another’s anything let alone his only wife when you have more than your fair share was unrecognizable for me in respects to my father. If I had the privilege of having that conversation with my father I would say to him why couldn’t you control yourself? Why did you have to bring this to our family? Do you not see the evil in this? This man was rare for he only had one wife and even though it is not known the type of dealings between the two, I like to think they had it good. For Bathsheba had mine and my mother’s dream being the only wife and the favorite not having to share her beloved with another woman. And now she is one of many and has lost as much as it is perceived she gained. Don’t you know the effect it has on me Abba as your only daughter? To have a father be known for this stained by it? I wasn’t even given a heads up no way to prepare for the ripple effect it would have on our family as a whole. I just wanted answers from a man I knew would refuse to give them to me of all people. I wanted answers from the highest as to why it’s okay for this to happen in my nation. The truth is I was scared because if my own father could do this any man could and what did that mean for my beloved. I wanted to say to him Don’t you realize what you have done? How this has hurt the heart of our G-d? Father what type of example are you setting for me? What am I supposed to learn for this? Why did you have to be so selfish? Did you even think about how this would affect us let alone you? There was nothing but silence from those put to guide me and from all others nothing but whispers. It was no secret my father was greedy when it came to love but he had always done things the proper way so there was much confusion as to why he would want another man’s wife. Why this woman? What was so special about her that not only did you break our holy laws but you broke your daughter’s heart as well? When young we think of our parents as something other than human but when we see the true faces of their humanity we seem to breakdown until we decide what to do with the information. We feel somewhat betrayed by them because they should be the ones telling us what isn’t right to do not showing us what isn’t right to do. I wanted to know how this happened. How something like this could bring down my father King David? It was rumored that she was taking her monthly ritual cleansing bath in clear view of G-d the angels, birds, and anyone else that wanted to see. Her skin shined as burnt bronze dipped in gold. Bathsheba was a strikingly beautiful woman. Her body looked as if it was carved by man’s lust. She had a tight waist, soft lusty hips perfect for holding, dimples in her back, thighs as smooth as marble her breast sat nicely because she had yet to suckle a babe. You would say she was exotic her eyes the color of fire and her skin the perfect shade of brown. Ok I guess after that description I can see why my father lusted but I know that she wasn’t raised in a royal family but she had to of known that was far from okay. What was she thinking? Was she trying to be a temptress and capture my father the king with her nakedness? Did she know my father could see her? Did she even care if anyone could see her? At this time most of the men were gone to war so maybe she thought surely the king would be gone as well but there is a right and a wrong way and she behaved in a very wrong way. A woman’s nakedness is sacred and powerful and should not be taken lightly.
I knew that he had broken the laws of our G-d and of our people and I longed to comfort my father in this great shame but who was going to comfort me. Shame is a clever liar it traps its victim in a cycle of un-forgiveness and the taunting it does to the brain of its victims is pure torture. How was I ever going to look my father in the face again and not see it there? Could I be that good of an actress and pretend I didn’t know? Would he pretend to not see it in my eyes? I knew that wasn’t all my father was known for. He was beloved of G-d and we had seen how G-d had moved in his life our life as a result of him being loved of G-d. This was different than any other thing he had committed against G-d and man. For these great sins it was prophesied that G-d was going to bring shame to my father publicly for his grave sin done in secret and take his wives and give them to his neighbor and that the sword would not depart from his household. None of us quiet knew what to make of this prophecy and it struck fear in all our hearts.
We all were very sad at this news but my father repented the highest forgave and when Bathsheba bore Solomon all seemed right again and thus the word of the prophet was conveniently forgotten only by man not by G-d. I felt very special to be the only princess born to my father. I loved being in his favor and when he would spoil me with his attention I ate it up but when he didn’t I found myself empty wondering when I would have his favor again. That is the problem with daddy’s girl’s we learn from a young age that the men in our lives hold a power over us and if they aren’t happy with us neither are we. I wondered many nights how the sin of my father would affect my relationship with him. As I grew many people would commit on my beauty. I never really believed them nor did I pay it too much attention because who is to know if one is being honest or just saying things because I am my father’s the king’s daughter.
I’m glad you are still reading and hope you have learned some insights you didn’t have before and if you knew them already great. Let us continue our journey.