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Through a Child's Eyes
Ok so here I am forcing vitamins down my throat, sitting up so straight it stiffens my back, and wearing what is so called a dress, my orange hair combed and pulled back in a tight braid as it rips pains through my skull. I eat in silence with a family that isn’t even mine. Although I am usually the obscure kid in the Calenstine family, I am forced to sit, walk, talk, act, and even sleep with proper manners. Before I was shipped off here, Manners wasn’t even in my vocabulary and nothing more than dirt smeared through my scalp. “Samantha, you took long enough to eat now go get in your bed,” Mr. Calenstine orders me. Without one word reaching my tongue, I slide out of my chair, that is frankly too high for my feet to do anything but dangle in mid air, and walk to my bedroom with an impassive expression painted upon my face.
My room holds only a bed, a dresser to hold my clothes together, and a small nightstand, the walls a lackluster yellow color. I dress myself in your old black buster shirt I hid underneath my pillow every day. Then I brush my teeth and climb into bed. I ponder over why I’m here to begin with. I didn’t do anything wrong. In fact, this is all your fault; so why am I forced to endure part of your punishment. Because of you I am living with a family that makes me something I’m not, a family that whips me every time I try to be myself. Because of you I’m being shipped off to another family tomorrow who will teach me a new set of rules, give me a new bed to sleep in, and pretend they actually care about me. You can’t know how your actions impacted my life now, so maybe if I tell you the story from the very beginning you will understand.
It starts like this: it was later in the evening when I got home from school, because I had basket ball practice right after math. “Daddy!” I call to you as I enter the house. The house is old and sits in one of those neighborhoods that rich people sneer at. It’s always unclean in some way or the other, and only has two small bedrooms, a living room/kitchen/dining room, and one bathroom, but it’s ours and that’s what I love about it. “Daddy, I’m home!” I call again. I find you in front of the television watching the Simpsons. I sit in your lap and focus my eyes at the T.V as well. We laugh together until our stomachs hurt.
“How was school?” you ask when there is a commercial.
“It was fine,” I exclaim. “I got a B- in history today.”
Your eyes widen and I smile broadly, pointing my nose upward with pride. “Sounds like we need to go get some pizza and ice cream for dinner tonight,” you tell me as if it were something exciting.
“Daddy,” I laugh, “we get pizza and ice cream for dinner every night.” It was true, pizza and ice cream at the Pizza King on Downbrick Road was like our signature dinner, but I didn’t mind it in fact having pizza and ice cream with you was the favorite part of my day even if it was something we did all the time.
“Then how about we go see a movie afterwards?” you suggest.
I swing my matt of orange hair pulled back into a rash ponytail as a wide smile appears on my crooked face. “Ok!”
“Do you have any homework?” you ask.
“No,” I lie. I am a horrible lire even if I do it often enough.
“Sam, go do your homework or I won’t take you to the movies or pizza and ice cream.” You push me off your lap and pat me on the butt as I storm off into my room, dragging my backpack full of stupid heavy books along behind me.
“I hate doing my homework; I never really learn anything!” I holler to the very top of my lungs before I enter my messy bedroom, and slam the door shut behind me. You can’t even see my hardwood floor covered with my toys, clothes, and trash. I kick I bundle of stuff out of the way to make room for my path to my bed where I collapse on, pulling off my old and worn sneakers with the other foot. I wore the same sneakers to school every day just like I always wore jeans and a T-shirt instead of the frilly cute dresses most girls pitied over. I wasn’t like most girls though, and so I didn’t hang out with them at recess, playing football with the boys instead.
I take a moment’s breather and to recollect my thoughts before I pulled out my math homework. I took one good look at that piece of paper covered with several of numbers scattered from left to right, causing my head to spin so fast it felt as if it were about to fall right off my neck. So I snatch my homework paper and scurry back into your lap. “Daddy,” I give you the sweetest smile a nefarious kid like me could possible make, “can you help me with my homework?” You only sit there, staring at me for what seemed like ten minutes before you sighed, and turning off the T.V, read the first problem to me.
You helped me finish all my homework like usual, and we went to eat pizza and ice cream at Pizza Kind like always. And after we watched Terminator Three and then snuck into the theater down the hall to watch Wolverine, you said it was time for bed. So once we were home again, I pulled your black buster T-shirt over my head and let if fall down to my scrawny knees. When you had told me to go brush my teeth for the fifth time, I finally decided to go do it before I received a beating.
That night when I was told to go to bed by twelve o’clock midnight, when you came to tuck me in, you told me you were going out for a couple hours. “Where are you going, Daddy?” I asked you with curiosity flowing within me.
“I’m just going to go ramble around for a little while. Maybe I’ll pick up some cookies while I’m out,” you told me with a weak smile.
“Ok get Oreos, Daddy.”
“You bet kiddo. Now what’s the rule?”
“Don’t let anybody in the house; not even if its Aunt Cassidy,” I said like some kind of robot trained to say it as I had said it every time you had to leave me home alone. “Oh, especially if it’s Aunt Cassidy,” I quickly corrected myself.
“That’s my girl,” you tell me with a wide smile, kissing the top of my forehead. You turned off the lights, and I waited until I heard you leave the house. That night as I quickly fell asleep, I had no idea that your quick walk would was a malicious one. I had no idea that that night you would do something so rash that it would deeply impact the rest of my life.
One month went by without anything out of the ordinary happening, except maybe that stray cat that we shaved bald so it would stop chasing our pet rat that we fed, Cheese-it. However, on the last week of the month of September, there was a knock at the door as we were watching Family Guy late on a Friday night. You get up to answer it to find as a man in a black neat suit and tie. “Can I help you?” you ask the man.
“Yeah, you’ve been suspected with murder and I need you to come with me sir.” At that said, my heart began to pound as I became clueless at what was going on here.
“Daddy, what does he mean?” I ask you walking into the kitchen part of the room.
“Is this your daughter?” them man asked you, glaring down at me.
“Yes,” you replied taking one glance at me and then at the man. “Honey we’re going to be going with this man for a few minutes to straighten some things out,” you tell me, gently placing your sooth hand on my cheek.
“No,” I turned to find another man had entered the house, “your daughter will be coming with me sir.” When I heard this my heart immediately sunk down to the pit of my stomach and I couldn’t help, but start crying.
“No, Daddy, no!” I said and then realized that I was actually screaming. However, I didn’t even have a choice before the second man in a black suit and tie as well lifted me right into his arms and pulled me away from you. I wasn’t going to let anybody take me away from you as I screamed and kicked the man as hard and as loud as I could. When that didn’t work, I sank my crooked, sharp teeth into his hands. He immediately let go.
I ran right into your arms and held around your neck as tight as I my weak muscles would let me. “Daddy don’t let them take me away from you,” I sobbed.
“Shh your going to be just fine, baby,” you tried to reassure me, but that was a darn lie. The man then grasped a hold of me again except this time I couldn’t get away. I kicked and screamed as they shoved me in a car, locked the door and drove off. I continued to scream until my throat felt as if it were bleeding. My head felt as if it was going to explode.
Right then and there I sat in the car driving miles away from you in a quandary I couldn’t even figure out. That was the night I suffered from your crime. I had no place in it, but somehow I had to pay the consequences. That was the night I lost my best friend forever.