Months went by and the little girl rarely heard from her mother. School grades plummeted and barely passing the teachers began to ask the little girl questions, “Where is your mommy, honey? We need to have a meeting with her.” The little girl knew if they found her mommy that she would be in big trouble. “My mommy is in California but you can speak with my Daddy.” What could he do? He knew one bad move and this little girl could tell her teachers what he had been doing. She was quiet but she was not naïve at how to play their game. She came home from school the same afternoon, “Daddy, the school wants to speak to you because I am failing.” His response, “Fine, but I am going to have to tell your mom.” She glared at him and he knew. He never did tell her mom.
The One Phone Call
“I have been gone for months and you have not sent one letter to me or your brother. What is wrong with you!” her mommy yelled thru the phone. “I don’t know where you are mommy?” the little girl replied. “You are a liar and a bad daughter. Your Daddy has the address. Put your Daddy on the phone.”
The little girl handed the phone to her Daddy and listened to him tell lies to her mother. “Yes, we are fine. I love you too. I can’t wait to see you too. She is fine. She has been my little helper. We are getting the house ready for you guys. No, she is listening fine. She is doing fine in school.”
He hangs up the phone and tells the little girl, “It’s time to go to bed.” The little girl decides tonight she is going to be brave. She goes into her room freshly painted and filled with fumes; she lies on top of her new mattress still covered with its plastic. She grabs her pillow and blanket and wraps herself as if she is in a sleeping bag. Standing in her doorway, the man says to her, “You can’t sleep in here, the paint is still wet and the fumes will be too much for the night. Come in our room.” The little girl pretended she was a sleep and did not respond. “I know you are not asleep. You can come on your own or I will carry you.”
From her deep belly, she sat up and screamed, “I am not going to sleep with you. If you make me sleep with you I will tell my mommy and runaway!” She held her breath and prayed he would not hit her. But something strange happen, he seemed scared. She could sense it and it made her feel stronger. “Leave me alone and get out!” He turned away and walked into the other room. He left her alone that night but she made up her mind that she was going to run away in the early morning. She packed her Big Bird backpack and put it under her pillow.
When morning came, the man was moving thru his regular morning routine of working in the garage and tinkering with his antique cars. She grabbed her backpack and walked out the back door and ran down the alley. She only knew one place to go and that was to her only friend, Carol. When she rang the doorbell, Carol’s mother came to the door and the little girl broke into tears.
“Honey, what is wrong? Come in. Carol, come downstairs.” Carol’s mom wrapped her arms around the little girl and walked her carefully to their den. She lifted the little girl onto her lap. Her motherly hand held the side of the little girls head and pushed it gently against her chest and rocked her. The little girl had not had this type of attention and the tears flooded while her heart pounded in fear. The moment was short lived as the phone rang. Carol’s mother gently put the little girl down on the couch and kissed her forehead. “I will be right back. Carol, get her some Kleenex.”
“Look, I know you are out of town. I don’t know why she is upset but she is welcome to stay here until you get back. Yes, hold on a minute.” Carol’s mom looked irritated. The little girl looked at her and new her mommy was on the phone and angry. She could sense it. “Honey, your mom is on the phone, come in the kitchen so you can talk to her in private. We will be in here.”
“Get your ass home and don’t you ever do this again.”
That was it. The little girl grabbed her backpack, “I have to go home.” Carol looked at her mom, “Mom, can’t she stay here?” Carol’s mom kneeled down, “Honey, what happen. Why were you upset?”
“Nothing, I am fine.”
“Well, I will drive you home,” Carol’s mom grabbed her car keys.
When she walked thru the doors of her house the man told his lies to Carol’s mom. “Well, you know she is failing. Her mom and I grounded her and she threw a fit. She is pretty spoiled. Her mom is not here and she doesn’t listen to me. Sorry we inconvenienced you.”
Carol’s mom left and all things returned to normal. She slept with her Daddy. He touched her and she kept quiet.
Silent School Games is the third chapter of the autobiography Silent Girl. You can begin here (http://encountersilentlove.com/2017/06/silent-before-five/)