Life 13

Published on October 20th, 2013 | by Mechelle Lynch


When a Child is Disowned by Her Mother – My Story

A urine soaked sponge mattress, no door to the hole in the wall that was designated my room; this had become my lot in life. For you to understand how I got into this conundrum, you need to know the events leading up to it.

My mother was ‘troubled’. It seemed like growing up was a sore point in her existence, which became a sore point in mine. Her capacity to relate to what inherently a mother’s role should be was seriously diminished. Not that she didn’t want to care for my siblings and I, she just didn’t have the aptitude or patience. Not long after my 11th birthday I became pissed off with her inability to provide what I deemed were the basic necessities and became rebellious and hated everything about my home life. At 11, you seem to think you know everything about everything.

My mother, reaching the end of her rope with my rebellious and defiant attitude, shipped me off to my father’s house to which I was delivered like discarded rags in a landfill. I cried a little. At 11, the new environment was a tad overwhelming to say the least; still I was relieved that I was miles away from the mean old witch!

My father’s house was a little cottage, substantially more modernized, and with a tad more amenities than my mother’s menial surroundings. ‘Humm,’ I thought to myself…’I think I would be very happy here. Any place is better than being with that mean old bag!’

Nothing however could have prepared my little mind for what I would have to endure in the coming years. I was shown to my room which I had to share with my brother (by ben). Yuck! Being so close to a boy crept me out; even if he was my brother or half-brother! Seeing that my father was the sole breadwinner, his salary could go only stretch so far. Sharing with a boy was not in my long term plan but I had to put on my big girl panties and suck it up.

The little hooligan was somewhere raising a ruckus so I took the opportunity to change into my night attire. My mind was racing on how the hell I was going to survive the next eight years thrown together with these unknown people.

The bed was basically a sponge mattress void of a sheet and my pillow was an old sofa sponge. Oh how I missed the comfort of my mother’s home but it was too late as she had practically disowned me. I guess I really was the unexpected visitor! At night my brother would creep into the bed beside me, mostly unwashed. I would wait until everyone had gone to bed, take the shredded sheet that was my blanket and retreat to the living room. At least there I would be speared the stench that was emitted from his body. How can a person feel so comfortable sleeping in his own filth? I guess little boys are not very keen on hygiene, personal or otherwise. Even so, didn’t his parents care enough about him to see to it he took a shower, even if they didn’t care about me?

I cried on a daily basis in my little corner of hell. Being thrust into a situation with all these unknown variables was no picnic. Getting acclimatised to these living arrangements and conditions were going to be a challenge and my step mother was none to please that this ‘invader’ had come into her space. How dare my father take such liberties as to try to make a decent home for his offspring! I felt like the outcast.

She never made me feel comfortable or at ease. There was always a permanent scowl on her face when I was around. I figured she breathed a sigh of relief when I had gone to school. Seeing me on a daily basic was eating her from the inside. I made myself as scarce as I could, only emerging from my cave when it was time for meals, chores or for school.

Eveything soon went south when my step mother decided I wasn’t worth her time or effort. She had three kids of her own and could not be bother with the inconvenience I had become. So from then on, I was left to fend for myself; cooking my own meals and washing my own clothing. My father had no says in the matter; it seemed like his wife had his balls in the proverbial vice. Damn if he did, damn if he didn’t. My father showed me the ropes of cooking various food items and I soon got very good at it. At least he figured I wouldn’t starve. A dead child would certainly be more expensive than he was prepared to undertake.

Without the help of a washing machine in those days, washing was a bit more strenuous but it was either I did it for myself or I would have to wear filthy clothing. For me, that was not an option; that was never an option.

Punishment was a severe flogging with a cow’s penis. There was such hatred in my father’s eyes as he swung that whip, which, when connected to my skin, left welts and bruises. It was as if in addition to the punishment he was inflicting on me for being naughty it was also a way for him to wage war on me for being his offspring; a major inconvenience in his life. I’m sure sometimes he wanted to kill me but that too would have been an inconvenience. Funerals expenses could range into thousands of dollars.

I made a couple friends in my neighbourhood with whom I would interrelate; they never imagined that this little girl, who laughed and played with them, went home to the abyss when night fell.

My grades suffered and I got into more mischief at school than any child should. However I always dreaded hearing the bell that signalled the end of the school day and it was time to go home. Home?  How do you define a home? I didn’t have a home! I when to a house filled with strangers who definitely didn’t like me or cared very much if I lived or died. My friends and family were all the children with whom I associated during the course of the day. I hid my feelings well. No one ever suspected that I was living a nightmare.

Every day I prayed for death to come.

Image credits:

Mechelle Lynch

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Mechelle Lynch

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