Chapter Seven – Stage of Drive-Bys and Moments to Grow (Autobiography Book by Mynzah)
~ Stage of Drive-Bys and Moments To Grow ~
Every experience, a lesson I can use immediately or in the future. I may not always understand at the time what I am experiencing but eventually I will and it is always for my betterment and the betterment of all. Including what I am about to share.
At the end of Jr. High, I was looking forward to going to High School in Exeter. My friends and I talked about it and our greatest fear was being trash canned or made to walk naked from the top of Rocky Hill back to town…none of those incidents happened. They were just legends passed down year after year to unsuspecting and scared 8th graders.
I’m the only child of my mother and father but my mom had two more children after me by someone else. The father of my mother was really nice to me but he had his issues with my mom. One time, early in their relationship, he had my mother by her hair and up against the wall of the house. I was in second or third grade and didn’t know what to do. I was crying and yelling at him to let my mother go. He wouldn’t release his grip and I knew I was too small to do anything. At that moment I remembered seeing people separate dogs fighting or having sex by spraying them with a water hose. I thought if it worked on dogs, maybe on these two, so I turned the water on and sprayed both them and yelled at them to stop. They both appeared to be shocked that I sprayed them and I didn’t stop until they let go. They both felt so bad that I they were behaving that way and that I had to spray them. I never had to do that again, they continued to fight once and awhile but not as violent as that day. My sister and brother weren’t born yet when this took place.
George was from Michuacan, Mexico and was here “illigally” but I’m glad he was here and part of my life. He would die later in a drunk driving accident. He was the passenger in a car that was broadsided by one of my friends brother. I got to go to George’s funeral but I didn’t get to see him in his casket and say goodbye. My brother and sister were toddlers and acting up in church so my mom made me take them outside and watch them. I was bothered by that because he did mean alot to me and I loved and him too so I felt I should be allowed to say goodbye.
In protest, I watched my brother and sister outside of church until the service was over and then we all headed to the cemetery. I thought to myself, “All these years with him, and the last day I can be with him and I’m not allowed and neither are my brother and sister.” My mother knew I was upset that everyone got to say goodbye except for me and she knew how close we were. My brother and sister were small and didn’t understand all that was taking place. When we got to the cemetery some adults called me over, they were George’s brothers. We walked over to the casket after they set it over his marker before the burial. They asked me if I wanted to say good-bye and I just nodded my head. The opened the casket and there was George. A flash of our history scrolled in front of my eyes and then the tears. I was happy for him that he was going home but I was sad because I would not have anymore experiences with him. The closed the casket and I went to where my mother was.
I was now the man of the house and I felt more so now as the protector of my brother and sister. I knew my mom could take care of herself but I spent a lot of time with my brother and sister while my mother worked various jobs. I tried to help her as much as I could with my toddler brother and sister. There was a ten year gap between us and I believe a two year gap between them, with my sister being the oldest.
When my sister was born I was very protective of her and would carry here every where I went. I finally had a sister, like I wanted with cousin Tenesha. I use to help my mom dress her and comb her hair, she reminded me of dolls we would play with as kids. One day I got a call from my dad at the next door neighbors house. We couldn’t afford a phone so we used the neighbor / landlord’s as a message phone. I took my sister with me next door and held her while I talked to my dad. After the phone call, I went home where my mom and George were. As I stepped into the house, I stumbled and my sisters head hit the front of the door. She didn’t hit it hard, in fact I questioned whether she hit it at all because I had gained my balance and the door was already more than half open. My mother saw this, and immediately got upset with me and started hitting me after she got my sister out of my arms. I felt bad that I wasn’t more careful with my sister but I felt wrongly accused by my mother and there was no reason to treat me this way. After this incident she told me I could never carry her again, that hurt worse than the spanking. I loved my sister and I couldn’t believe my mother would think I wouldn’t be careful with her. After this, I still cared for my sister but I wasn’t as attached to her, I didn’t want to get in trouble again because of her and I didn’t want to accidentally do something to her.
After my brother came almost 2 years later, it was like starting over for me and I treated him identical to how I treated our sister. I could see I was a lot more careful with him because I didn’t want a repeat with my sister. I always enjoyed dressing my brother before church or some outing we went on. I loved combing his hair straight back and making him look like an adult. My brother and sister had different hair than me. I had the almost afro look and they had completely straight hair. There hair was much easier for me to comb than my own.
I became extremely protective of my brother and sister because I loved them and also because of what I had already experienced in Life. I didn’t want a repeat for them to take place. When they reached an age that mom felt it was ok to hit them, I began protecting them from her. I had already taken many whoopings from her and I had become numb to it and stopped crying. If I saw that my mother was going to hit them then I would get in the way. My brother and sister knew they could come to me and I would protect them with my body. My mom would try to hit them still but I just let her hit me. Then she would tell them, “You’re lucky David is here”. I’m pretty sure they knew that and that’s why they would run to me when they knew she was going to take belt or switch to them. I didn’t mind at all, I wanted someone to protect me from her when I was little so I was happy to do this for them. I always said to myself that if I ever had kids I would never hit them or treat them the way I was treated.
Well, my brother and sister were like my kids to me so I started with them, then just before my 9th grade year, my mother accused me of molesting my little sister. I awoke to her pulling me out my bed by my hair. I thought we were getting robbed and when I realized it was her, I couldn’t imagine why she would be doing this. I remember looking at her as this happened and thinking to myself that she looks like she want to kill me. As she let’s go and I’m crying she asked me, “What did you do to Senaida?”. I didn’t have any idea what she was talking about and I tried to understand what she meant. I told her, I didn’t do anything to her. Then my mom says, “Senaida pointed toward her private area and said, awee”. That means she hurt or hurt something, that I knew.
The previous night my mother worked and I stayed home with the kids to baby sit them. I was an 8th grader and about to go into 9th grade, there were other things I would have preferred to do than watch my brother and sister. I loved them but they were just toddlers and I am about to go into high school. This night that I watched them was the same as any other day or night that I watched them. I would have them race to the refrigerator to see who could get me a soda the quickest, they loved seeing who could do it the fastest. I of course was grateful at how quick they could bet me something. It didn’t take long for them to realize I was tricking them into getting me stuff that I didn’t want to get myself. It was also entertaining for me to see them both try so hard to beat the other. The only thing that stood out the night I watched them is that my sister fell out of her chair while my brother and I watched television.
We had a two seat chair in front of our t.v. and I was holding my little toddler brother Joe on my lap as we looked up at the t.v. on top of the dresser. My little toddler sister was behind us and to the left playing and not bothering us. I wasn’t concerned with what she was doing because I knew she was safe. Our living room was also their bedroom and my mothers bedroom and also their play area. So she was really close near by. As my brother and I watched t.v., I hear her fall so I looked over to her direction to see if she is ok. My brother and sister had one of those little kid tables with the little chairs and she had fell out of the chair. I asked her if she was ok and she pointed at her leg and said, “owee”. I told her to come here and she climbed up where Joe and I were. I looked at her leg and didn’t see anything. I told her, “You’re ok Meja, you can keep playing”, so she did and that was it.
I told my mom the whole story and as I was explaining to her what happened, it dawned on me that she thinks I molested my little sister. Once I realized that, I became very angry with my mother and I started cursing at her. It was the first time I had ever spoke to my mother that way because I had always respected her but I also feared her. This time she went to far and how could she not know how much I love those kids and would not allow any harm to come to them, let alone do it myself. She then tells me she is taking my sister to our doctor and see what he says. I’m still crying and pissed off so I told her to go ahead, I didn’t do anything wrong. Then she says, We’ll see, you better be right.”. She left right after that with my brother and sister to our family doctor. I believe his name was Dr. Bolton.
After she left, I was still running through my head what had happened and that I should have paid more attention to my sister. I was starting to feel bad but I realized there was nothing I could do. I didn’t think she was that hurt. After accepting that, my mind jumped over to the fact that my mother believes I was capable of doing such a thing to a child and on top of that, to my own sister. Little did she know, twice now I was almost molested and didn’t want that to happen to anyone else, especially my brother and sister.
This moment was it for me, I knew I didn’t want to live with her anymore. I was about the start 9th grade and I was looking forward to it. Prior to this I had not intention of living with my father or going back to the Bay Area. I accepted that I would finish all my schooling in Exeter with my friends. Before she got home I wondered who I could live with and the first person that came to mind was my God mother and God Father. I didn’t want to live with father because of my experience in 5th grade with him. My God mother is also my mothers sister and her husband is my God father. Then I started to wonder how I would tell my friends that I’m leaving again, out of nowhere.
When my mother returned home from the Dr’s office, I was still pissed off and to the point of desiring to strike her with my fist. As she walked through the door carrying my brother and sister, I could see that she had been crying and still had the tears in her eyes. She said, ‘I’m sorry for accusing you David, I know how much you Love them and would never hurt them”. I didn’t know what hurt worse, her aplogizing and realizing I loved those kids or being accused of such a thing. Tears fell from my eyes as I said to her, “I don’t want to live here anymore.” I told her I want to live with Auntie Lorraine and Uncle Bill. She began to cry and apologize more, then she reached for me and I backed away from her. She went on to tell me that the Dr. said Senaida was fine and that nothing penetrated her. She told the Dr. what I said happened and she said the Dr. told her,”That is more likely what happened” and “I don’t believe David is capable of such a thing.”
This upset me even more because now the realization that, even the Dr. knows I could never do this but my own mother didn’t. I repeated to her again that I don’t want to live here and if I have to live with my dad then I will. She continued to apologize but I would not waver, there was no way I was changing my mind or my feelings. Eventually she accepted my position and we arranged for me to live with my dad Up to the day I left on the greyhound again, she was nice to me and the nicest she had been in some time. I starting feeling sorry for her because I knew she felt guilty for this taking place. I don’t know if she has ever forgiven herself, I hope she has, if not I hope she will…
I’ve since forgiven my mother for the accusation but it forever changed my relationship with her and with my little sister, again. I of course still loved my sister and would protect her from my moms whoopings, but I felt myself drifting away from her and towards my little brother. It was if I was afraid of anything happening to her, I would get the blame and I didn’t want that responsibility. I would also end up having resentment towards her because of these experiences involving her. Once I recognized that, then I was able to release that resentment, she was just a child like I and a player on the stage of life’s drive bys…another moment to grow for my mother, sister and I.
I didn’t tell my dad why I was back, I felt that if I did, then he might go and do something to my mother. So I kept it to myself and I told him that I missed and wanted to spend time with him again. I wasn’t entirely lying. Once I was on the bus and headed to him, I felt a desire to see him and get to know him better. It had been 3 years since I last lived with him and I was older now, so I felt I could handle it better this time around. It was good to see my dad, he was different and so was I. He seemed to have calmed down a bit and I seemed to have become