“You say she’s how old now?”
“Six. She just turned six yesterday.”
“I see. So, what made you decide to reach out for this type of help?”
“At first, we thought she was just...a normal child you know. Maybe she has an overactive imagination.”
“Well, when she was born, she was very responsive. She didn’t really cry, she’d squeal and such, but as she grew older...that’s when we noticed the change in her. One day, I was cleaning and I turned to look at her, she in her playpen...”
“Take your time.”
“She was in her playpen and I promise you, I watched as her eyes moved as if she was following someone. She’d smile and reach out for someone or something. It was difficult. She couldn’t really be around other children.”
“And why is that? Was that your choice, as her parents?”
“Of course it was, on my behalf as her mother.”
“So, you feel that you kept your daughter away from other children to prevent what exactly? Did you fear for other children or did you fear what others would think...of your child?”
“Look at her man. She’s a beautiful girl, but something is terribly wrong.”
“I’ve been doing this for years. I’ve seen it all, but I want to know why you believe there’s something wrong with your daughter? She’s six years old and at this age, this stage in her life, she’s growing. Of course she’ll have an active imagination. She’s a child.”
“You don’t get it. Watch her...just look.”
A six-year-old Paige is dressing in coveralls; her natural hair is styled in two puffs. She looks at the blocks and puts them together, spelling apple, mom, rainbow and whatever words she could find. Paige reached out for the ‘h’ to spell house when she noticed the chipped block rolled away from her. Paige, so innocent and sweet, pulled her legs closer to her body, rocking she began to sing, Jesus loves me, this I know, for the Bible tells me so. Her singing was interrupted by a sultry voice,
...They are weak, but he is strong.
Paige closed her eyes and continued to sing until the woman’s voice disrupted her. Opening her eyes, Paige held back her cry and tears as the woman before her hushed her with a smile. The woman looked to be in her late sixties, long gray hair that flowed to her shoulders. Her presence wasn’t sinister or mischievous, it was serene.
I would hum that song over and over when you were a baby. Watching you in your crib and you’d smile at me, bald mouth and all.
“Are you gonna hurt me?”
No suga. You keep on singin’ your song and I’ll just wait here and listen.
“My mama and daddy aren’t happy. It’s because I’m weird. I don’t go to school. I heard my daddy tell mama that, I was normal. But I know mama is scared of me.”
You are special. You are special, my oh, so sweet one. My lady bug.
“They can’t see you like I can. Or hear you. I get scared sometimes, but I keep my night light on. It’s a lady bug, too.” Paige smiled.
“I don’t believe there’s anything wrong with your daughter. I want to ask you something, do you feel that you need to get her help because of your beliefs?”
“Why do you say that?”
“If it’s not pride its beliefs. I’ve had people tell me dark secrets and it eats them alive. They want the help, need the help, but when it comes down to it. They’re embarrassed or terrified.”
“We have strong beliefs, but no one would understand.”
“Understand what? That there are people with gifts. That there are people who can predict things? I don’t feel as if this is psychological. I’m not a priest or a pastor, but I have my experience in studies. Here’s something I want to ask you, are you sure you are ready and willing to allow you daughter to be labeled? To be diagnosed and prescribed?”
Paige cocked her head, closing her eyes.
“They’re talking about me. They’re scared. I’m not weird. I’m not sick. I’m just different.”
That you are child. That you are. What’s your name?
Paige...Paige, sing to me some more.
Smiling, Paige began to sing her song and rock.
“She’s talking to someone or something. What we can’t see or hear, she sees and hears. We just want her to grow up safe and normal. She’s home schooled. We don’t want to risk anything.”
“I see. What I will diagnose her with...is called schizophreniform, it’s somewhat like schizophrenia, however studies show that this can last less than six months. This disorder is a type of... psychosis in which the person cannot tell the difference from what it real and what is imagined. In my honest, professional opinion, she’s just a child with a child-like imagination. Sheltering her can play a huge part in this as well. Now, are you sure that this is your next step?”
Paige’s parents turned to look at their daughter as she began to rock and sing. They were used to this, to some it seemed normal, but there was nothing normal about it. They watched as Paige turned her head towards the huge painting and she waved frantically with a big, innocent child-like smile. Her parents turned to the psychologist, shocked and asked,
“Why are you looking like that? As if someone walked over your grave?”
Paige continued to wave as the spirit in front of her faded away humming the rest of the song.
“It’s not possible.”
“What’s not possible?” They asked.
The psychologist turned to her parents, confused and concerned,
“It’s not possible for Paige to see us on this side.”
“Why?” Her father asked.
“Because...it’s a two-way mirror.”
From their point of view, they saw young Paige waving and smiling. From her point of view, Paige looked on as her parents and the psychologist watched with fear and concern on their faces. It was impossible, but possible in so many ways. The psychologist wrote something down on a sheet, ripped it off and handed it to her parents.