It had been a very long 10 years, and not very good ones. It started off good. No man ever starts off hitting you. If they did, of course, you wouldn't stay. No, they reel you in. They smile, they charm. They pay attention. They hunt you down. They search out that specific girl who has insecurities. They look for those little signs so that they know how to gain control. You don't even notice it happening. At first, it seems cute, even charming. He pays so much attention to you. He must really care. He always wants to be with you. Little do you know...until it's too late.
My too late came after 3 children, and many incidents that were just too embarrassing to discuss, and also baffling. After seeing the abuse that my own mother took from my father, I really didn't understand how she could turn her back and not help me. I was trapped. He controlled the bank account, the cars were in his name. He picked up my pay checks. He would go to work and take the phone. He would time me when I was in the shower. He demanded receipts from the grocery store, and God help me if I dropped any change. Once, at a stop light at Bruce and Lake Mead, a man in the car next to us did a double take. It was natural at that time, seeing a black man with a white girl. I was immediately quizzed, "who the hell is that?" "I don't know" I replied. "Your lying...You fucked him." and WHAM! right across my face. This was my life.
I realized one day, after waking up with my 5 year old son Daryal next to me, after being punched in the face, again, that I didn't want my kids growing up with this shit. I didn't care if I lived in a truck. I just wanted him to go away. I really couldn't take it anymore. I tried to hide some money, to save a little for an attorney. About a month later, he found it. It was hidden under the headboard of the bed, and I came home to the eruption that was unlike anything I had ever dealt with before. He was standing in the hallway, in the dark. I walked in the front door, and he literally rushed me like a fullback in a football game. I was thrown to the ground, and then tossed across the room into the wall. I don't remember much more, other than I somehow managed to get out the front door, and proceeded to run down the street. I ran, and ran. We lived 3 blocks from the police department. I went inside, and immediately asked for the oldest, white cop they had on duty at the time. The reason? Most of the cops on the North Las Vegas Police Dept at the time, were his friends. Yay. One of the officers began taking a report from me, then took pictures of me. I didn't even realize how badly I was injured. I had a ruptured ear drum, fracture cheek bone, two black eyes, cut lip, bruises everywhere, and a broken rib. They went to the house, and arrested him. Finally.
Over the course of the next few hours, his mother, my mother, and my father, all called me and said, "Bail him out." WHAT? Then, the best of all. My OWN MOTHER....came to my front door. I answered, looking the way I did, with my children around me. I asked her what she wanted. I didn't let her in. She looked me right in my eye. She said, "Penny, don't be stupid. You need to bail him out now." I just kept looking at her like I really couldn't believe this was happening. I firmly said, "No". Then, just as calmly, and clearly as she had every said anything to me, ever, she said, "It's better to learn to get hit in your face than to cut your income in half." to which I replied, "Fuck you".
I had never cussed at my mother before. A week later, a constable showed up at my front door, and me, and my children were evicted from the house. My parents owned the house. Lovely....we lived in a Uhaul for 4 days, until my friend Melvin found out, and was furious. He gave me money to get an apartment, and helped us out.
I have never understood, to this day, why my parents did not try to help me. I don't understand why they thought it would be better to stay. I would be dead. I wouldn't have made it 6 more months. He had already caused me to loose a child. I was 6 months into the pregnancy. A girl. I was traumatized from that...my health was deteriorating. My emotional state was fragile. I kept asking myself, what in the HELL had I done to deserve this? What had I possibly done to them for them to turn their backs and let me be treated like that?
It's a very harsh world. It's a very rough thing to realize that sometimes, you are alone. Yet it's also a good thing too, at times, to realize that your stronger than you thought. You look back, and you think, Jesus...I lived through that? Wow...So, I talk about it, and I don't let it hurt me anymore, because it's done. It's over. I am stronger now, because of what happened. I know how to appreciate a good man, because I lived with the very worst man. Everything that happens really does happen to teach you. You really can take any situation, and learn from it, evolve from it. I know, that I won't ever allow myself to return to that life....but then again, I have love now. :-)