-Journey of Forgiveness
Remember that sometimes not getting what you want is a wonderful stroke of luck”-Dalai Lama
“Get your funky hands out of my face!” I yelled at the boy Josh in front of me. We were standing in line waiting to go to lunch. “What did you just say?” asked my 5thgrade teacher Mrs. Scoot. “Get your funky hands out of my face because he keeps waving them in my face” I explained. “No, you didn’t you cursed and that is unacceptable” Mrs. Scoot said. “Naw she did say funky” Josh added. “Go to the office” said Mrs. Scoot. “I didn’t do nothing”, I protested . “Now!” she yelled.
“What am I going to do now?”, I thought. The last thing I wanted to do was go to the office. Any kind of call home was just going to trigger another whooping and I definitely did not want that. So, I went to the office with a plan. Have them call Josh to the office so, he can tell them I didn’t curse. That is what I wanted to happen but, they didn’t even want to hear my side. Detention, a call home and go home early. “Fuck!” I yelled in my head.
We didn’t have a car and Spring didn’t work so, that meant two things. I had to walk home, and she would most certainly be waiting on me with the leather strap. I walked as slow as I could without taking too long to get home. Be brave, it won’t last long, don’t cry, don’t make a noise, it’s going to be okay. I kept telling myself this over and over again on my walk home.
Maybe it was how long it took me to get home, maybe she had a bad day or maybe she just hated me. I don’t know what it was that day but, when I walked in the door I could tell this was going to be different. Spring was sitting in the dark holding the strap. “Go to room and get ready”, she calmly stated. I knew the drill. I got naked, planted my feet firmly on the ground and held the chair.
No tears, no sounds, not a one. Spring held my shoulders and whaled on me much longer than usual. No tears, no sounds, not a one. When she was done I attempted to grab my underwear (I always put those on first because I felt so shameful being naked getting whooped). “Go to the bathroom”, she demanded. What? This was new.
I cautiously walked in the bathroom and saw that the tub was filled with water. “Get in,” I was directed while standing in the door way. I just stood there staring at her. I didn’t understand why she wanted me to take a bath. I had open slits all over my skin and it wasn’t even bath time. “Get in NOW!” she yelled. I put my foot in and screamed. The water was so hot it felt like she boiled it first. Like any normal person I snatched my foot out.
Out of nowhere Spring was on me, beating me with the strap and yelling for me to get in the tub. I got in but, it was so hot my natural reaction was to jump back out. This time Spring was standing over me and pushed me down in the hot water. She demanded for me to wash up. Crying and screaming from pain I washed myself while she stood nearby watching me.
When I was done she allowed me to get out. “No clothes stand in the corner until I say get out.” Spring directed. I stood there in the corner naked, scares bleeding, soul bleeding and all hope for a better life slipping away. I had to stand in the corner until school was out that afternoon. Then I was directed to sit naked in the corner until bed time.
That night for the first time in my life I cried from my soul. I cried for my real mom and for God to take me. I cried only on the inside because for so long I was not allowed to cry on the outside. Somehow, I had seemed to forget how. At that moment something inside changed and I felt a sadness and anger that I had never felt before. I drifted off to sleep that night praying for death to come to me, so I could go to my real mom.
The next day, whelps and all I went back to school. I spent the entire day in detention. By the next day I was allowed to go back to class. I resented that classroom and the teacher. As far as I was concerned, it was her fault that I got beat. I was angry at her, the class, the school and the entire situation. I was even more angry that the teacher grabbed my arm that morning, saw my whelps, made eye contact with me, and proceeded to be the nicest person in the world to me.
I wanted revenge on everyone except Spring for some odd reason. Mrs. Scoot decided to make me her classroom helper for the day. One assignment was to take the tacks and hang up posters. I discreetly took one tack and put it in my pocket. When I went back to my desk, I showed my little secret to one of my classmates. We put a plan together to put it in someone seat and make them sit on it.
Who better then the girl next to me? The teacher asked a question and the classmate convinced the girl to stand up to answer. While she was standing I put the tack in her seat. Delighted with myself I started laughing. Mrs. Scoot shot me a stern look and told me to stop playing. I don’t know what took over me but, in response I jumped up and pushed the classmate down into the seat making her sit on the tack.
She yell out, the teacher yelled for me to go the office and I lost it. I kicked over my desk, threw a chair at the teacher and ripped everything off the wall on my way out the classroom. Once I got to the office I was hysterical. I was crying and yelling that she was going to kill me. I pulled up my sleeves and showed the principal my scares. I cried and begging for her not to call Spring. I pleaded for her to listen to me. She called the school therapist to the office and then she called Spring.
At first, I refused to speak to the therapist but, was allowed to stay with her for the rest of the day. The only question I finally agreed to answered was to provide my Dad’s phone number. When I got home from school that day I knew the routine. I walked in the house right past Spring to my room, got naked and stood holding the chair. Spring walked in and told me get dressed and go to bed. “Crap,” I thought. I wasn’t sure what fucked up thing she had in store for me but, I was not going to let her get me. So, I put on my pj’s and took half a pack of Benadryl. “Mommy here I come”. I whispared and off to sleep I went with nothing on my mind but, escape.
“Can you hear me? Open your eyes baby wake up.” the voice of my Dad. I could hear him but, I couldn’t see him. “She’s okay, she will be okay”, Spring was talking now. They were yelling at each other but, my Dad’s voice was soothing to me. I wanted to open my eyes to see him but, they were heavy like rocks. I was awake in my mind but, I could not move my body or respond. “I’m taking her!” my Dad yelled and like the kiss for sleeping beauty, my eyes started to open.
I was in an out for the most part but, I do recall my Dad carrying me to the car. I recall being in the hospital and by the time I was released I was fully awake and functional. My Dad was full of concern asking me about what happened. Honestly, I didn’t want to tell my Dad because I was scared that he did not care. That he didn’t love me. I told him I just wanted my mommy. Then he told me that he had a dream that my mother came to him and told him he needed to come and get me. He told me I could tell him anything and it was okay he would help me figure this out. In that moment I felt so protected and loved by my Dad. I was for sure he would not take me back to her and I could move in with him and his new girlfriend.
The next day my Dad took me to school and we both sat down with the therapist. She told my Dad that she believes I have depression and anger issues due to some underlining issues at home. She requested that both him and Spring come in together to discuss what was going on at home. She then explained how everyday I would be pulled out of class for sessions with her and sessions with the anger management counselor.
Just like she said, I started getting pulled out of class for sessions with her and anger management. However, my Dad and Spring never did come in for that session. I went back to living with Spring and Dad went back to living with his girlfriend. The incident was never brought up again but, I started to see rays of sunlight. Spring was still full of mind games and extreme punishments but, the whooping’s came to a permeant end and I was never struck by lighting again.