This abuse was taking such a toll on my baby brother that he began to wake up in the middle of the night to raid the refrigerator. It was heartbreaking when I would wake up and notice my brother not in his bed and I would go downstairs to find him in the refrigerator eating just ketchup from the bottle. Sometimes I would sit there and let him have his way, but there were times I had to stop him just to keep him from being caught in action by Rose.
One day she did catch him eating from the fridge and I can recall running down the stairs hearing my brother screaming and crying because she is beating him but all I could do was watch him suffer. I could not protect my baby brother from this hateful person. He went from being potty trained to becoming a bed wetter. I remember she would beat him for wetting the bed and even started putting those blue, old people diapers on my baby brother. She was a true bitch indeed.
The great escape from this woman was school; a place of peace for me. I was able to eat breakfast and lunch all by myself without those dogs, I received recognition for all my hard work from my teacher and nobody at the school was tearing my spirit apart.
Yes, I was safe and secure at this place, but my facial expressions must have said something different because my teacher would ask me at times if everything was okay with me. When I would reply that everything was good, she’d get this look of discernment as if she knew that I was lying to her. I did not have any visible show-and-tell signs for her to go any further because I never gave her any problems, my hair was always combed, I wore nice clothing and shoes and I maintained excellent grades.
Ms. Johnson really looked out for me at times, like the day my class went on a field trip and Rose would not make a bag lunch for me. She made a sandwich with apricot preserves and told me to eat that. I left the house, threw that mess in the garbage and decided I just would not eat lunch that day. Ms. Johnson noticed that I did not have any lunch and asked if I brought a bag lunch for the trip. Filled with shame and trying to keep tears falling from my eyes, I said no. She had that look on her face again and kindly asked the class if they minded sharing their lunches with me. I was so embarrassed but my classmates shared their food and didn’t even tease me for not having any food.
I dreaded when school let out and the weekend came because I would have to be at that place with that woman. The craziest part of this whole ordeal was that I would actually see my cousins on my way home from school. I didn’t know at first that we were attending the same school. These were my same cousins who used to live next door to my family when we lived in the basement on the west side. They noticed me first and would stop to talk with me. I was happy to see them but would hurry to brush them off because Rose did not live far from the school so I had a limited time to get home. Sometimes knowing my cousins went to the same school that I attended and that my uncle lived not too far from the prison that I was in leaves a bitter taste in my mouth to this day.
I can imagine them running home and telling their father, who is my uncle, that they saw me. If he would have just waited for me after school and checked up on his niece, I could have told him everything. I could have told him, but instead I was left to continue receiving these senseless violent acts from this person.
Passed Around By Man But Not Passed Over By God Chontate Brown Copyright ©2013 All rights reserved.