My daughters and I were downstairs in the basement. I was holding both of them close to me as the rooms upstairs were being pulled apart. Furniture was being thrown around. Books tumbled down the stairs. Feet were pounding the floors. I thought nothing could get more intense then this moment right now.
“That’s it. I’m leaving.”
I was beginning to sound like an echo that never really dissipated. And my daughters said, “Mom we heard you say this before and you never do anything about it.”
All I could focus on was what they just said to me. I thought to myself, this is how they see me. What am I teaching them? My heart was beating in my ears and I could almost hear my blood pumping through my veins.
We stayed in the basement that night until this person, who I will never speak of in a good way ever again, left. When we crept up the stairs the next morning, our home was in shambles. My computer was broken with all my writing over the years. All of our books were ripped up. My daughter’s baby book was ripped apart. Furniture was broken. And all I could think of was my daughters and what they said to me the night before.
When this person came back the next day all sheepish and so so sorry for wrecking everything. It was similar to remorse but I’ve seen this mockery before. Something inside changed. I saw this person for what they really were. And I all could hear were my daughters’ voices in my head, “you never do anything about it.”
I stood up straighter and with a shaky voice I said, “Leave my house and never come back.”
This was the day that I listened to my daughters who were eight and eleven at the time. They taught me to be brave and to embrace it.
Miigwech for allowing me to share this story. I don’t tell it very often because it’s part of my life that I don’t want to remember. What I do cherish is this teaching that my daughters gave me.
Ps. You inspire me to write. I have my first book of poetry coming out this fall. I will send you a copy when it comes out!!