He got up and left and he never touched me again, that battle was over. Mom came in the room and asked where he was. Now I know better then to upset Mom, the doctors and everyone always told me how we couldn’t upset her and cause her unnecessary stress. But, I felt this was necessary. I started rambling on and on about all the picnics and bbqs, when he would corner me into an empty Sunday school room at church. How he would touch and taste my body and sometimes I was not alone. There were other kids that were involved too. It all poured out of me like I had just pulled the cork from the ocean’s floor. And she held me and screamed apologies. And we rocked back and forth and cried together. Mom told me how he used to chase her around the table trying to catch her to abuse her too. She kept saying how stupid she was because she did not protect me when she knew what he was capable of. She told me about the scary nights she had as a little girl. Having to live under the same roof with him.
Mom decided to call one of her sisters and she rushed on over. Mom told her everything I had said. I felt like I was on trial for doing something wrong. She started in on how he was a good church man and he’s just an old man. All men get like that when they get older. She kept looking at me with her face all twisted like I was the one holding down little children. Hey lady I was the child in this picture here!! I couldn’t believe my ears, she called him and asked about the whole thing, and Sheila said this Daddy. Yes, ahh, ok. Yes Daddy. Blah, blah, blah. I felt like I was being boxed into a corner. I was having irrational thoughts at this point. I remember fearing that what if she told him to come over and said here you go Daddy, take her. We know you are a good, Christian man. Now Sheila shut up and take it, like we all had to. That’s exactly how I felt this was all going to go down.
So, I did what I learned to do best. I ran; I ran as fast as I could out the front door. I remember hearing Momma screaming to my aunt how she was going to lose her baby. Go after her she screamed, please. I was gone and it felt good to feel the wind rush in and out of my lungs. The pain in my side and chest helped me to know that yes, I was still alive. I slowed down and turned into a neighborhood. I had never been there before and it felt nice to be somewhere new. Nobody knew me; I was the outsider looking into their windows. I saw kids playing, mom’s bringing in groceries, fathers mowing lawns. Yeah, I’ll take this one I thought. I want this kind of life. Not the screwed up one down the road.
I walked until after dark and then I started to worry about Momma. There was no need for her to be upset and worry about me. God forbid what if something has happened to her and I’m not there to take charge. So I walked and then I ran so I could get there sooner. And when I reached our yard I stood there. There she was sitting on her bed with her legs dangling over the side. She had her red shawl like blanket over her shoulders. She was scared and worried, I could just tell. And for a minute I felt like the luckiest girl in the world. To have had such a beautiful family at one time. There was so much love in our home. And now looking at her it was my responsibility to care for her and love her like she’s always done for me. I was going to keep our love alive and I knew our love would keep her alive.
I walked in the door and she had tears pouring from her eyes. The relief of me finally walking through that door was all over her face. I dropped down on my knees in front of her and cried she rubbed my head and told me he would never touch me again. She said that Daddy is probably rolling in his grave and that he would have killed him if he would have known. We finally went to bed after a long talk and I felt safe that night. Safe from my grandpa and safe from death.