Memories

Once upon a time I was 16… My family had just moved out of our house into an apartment. I had been dating him for several months at this time…

I was a night owl even then. It was pretty late for a school night.. Maybe 12… 1?…

I woke up to a noise. I froze in my bed… Eyes wide in the darkness.. Ears tuned into the noises around me.

It was outside.. a scrambling, a whimper… a thud, a grunt… a cry.

I wrapped my blankets around me and got on me knees in front of my window. Slowly, I barely opened one of the blinds so I could peer out into the night… There was one light in the parking lot.. Immediately I saw that there was a woman and a man in a vehicle down below. She was in the driver’s side, obviously trying to leave.. He was in the passenger’s side facing her, one knee propped on the seat, the other leg standing on the floor board… One hand on the seat and the other in front of him with his finger pointing towards her.

They argued… They were loud…

I watched… I was silent… Frozen…

He slapped her.

She moved her hands in front of her face… In the dark with little light I couldn’t see what exactly was happening, but it looked as though he was grabbing her shoulders and she was trying to protect herself… At that point I quietly slipped out of my room and ran to the phone… As I dialed 9-1-1, I dragged the phone to my room as far as it could go…

The dispatcher answered. I quickly told my story, while trying to make the cord reach to my window so I could see what was happening. He asked questions, to which I whispered my reply. I was so afraid the man below would see me.. would know that I had called.. and my family would be in danger…

This man was dangerous in my mind! Someone not to be trusted for myself or my parents… I waited on the line until the police arrived.. It was late in a small town, they didn’t take that long…

I hung up the phone and watched as two police officers arrived and went to the vehicle.. The couple immediately got out of their car. One officer led the woman inside and the other officer hand cuffed the man and put him in the back of the police car. I watched until the 2nd officer came out and they drove away…

I prayed he wouldn’t know it was me. I prayed for my family’s safety…

Then I forgot this story… Amazing right? Amazing how memories can be forgotten… Especially one so different, so traumatic as this… I didn’t see things like this very often. The only way I can explain why I forgot is because my own life was happening… I was with him at this time. He was controlling from the start… There’s a lot to tell about my own story at this age… So, yes.. this memory faded to the background…

Fast forward years later…

It was pretty late for a week night… Maybe 12?.. 1?..

This time I was already awake. Eyes wide in the darkness.. Ears tuned into the noises around me.

It was inside this time.. a scrambling, a whimper… a thud, a grunt… a cry.

Waiting for him to finish his drinking… Wondering what would happen this time… Praying he would drink fast enough to just want to go to sleep right away…

And I remembered.

I wrapped my blankets around me and sat up… I saw them in the vehicle below, on that night so long ago… I remembered my fear. My worry for her safety… for my parents safety…

And I wondered…

What had happened to me?… Why had this become ok?… Why wasn’t I on the phone dialing 9-1-1 as I had so many years before?.. Where had that brave girl gone, and who had replaced her with the shell that I had become?

Then I heard the footsteps coming up the stairs… and I forgot that story… Amazing right?.. Amazing how memories can fade into the background.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s