Prey

If I’d been an adult, I could have seen the pattern of escalation in the abuse. Understood that no matter how I tried I would never be able to prevent it or escape it. Trying to stay on alert from the moment he came home until the next morning when he went to work was exhausting. Weekends were hell. There were times that I could not escape being alone with him. Alone meant being the sole focus of his mercurial moods. In the end, nothing I could have done would have changed the outcome.

The rain will forever trigger the events of that humid evening. Standing at my bedroom window my eyes searching the horizon for my mother’s station wagon with my siblings in it returning from a shopping trip to the mall. Grounded as usual forced to stay home.

He burst into my room cursing at me for something I’d left outside in the sprinkling rain. I didn’t bother to turn around. I knew what was coming it was always the same. My body relaxed as stiffening up only made it hurt more. I heard the familiar whiz as the belt cut thru the air. The sharp sting of the leather across my shoulders, my legs and especially my rear. I stood there not making a sound leaving my mind and body behind while I floated above and waited.

He must have deviated from the script and expected a response. I returned to myself too late to prevent him from pushing my head into the window cracking it with my forehead. Dazed I fell back into him. Grabbing me by the shoulders, he spun me around and slapped me hard across the face. I must have missed something pretty big while I was in la-la land.

Words did not make sense I saw the spit fly from his mouth his face twisted up and purple with rage. He stepped forward and with both of his hands grabbed my breasts and squeezed. Suddenly my body and brain synched and I felt a pain I’d never experienced. I screamed. His eyes brightened up, and he laughed.

Heart pounding, disoriented I woke from my nightmare not knowing where I was. Frozen. Slowly the familiar feeling of my bedding, the sound of my wife breathing deeply in sleep and her warmth began to seep into me. Home I’m home. 

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