This post is a very personal one.
It was a dream I had. A very real dream. A dream that I still can't shake.
It felt so nice to be home. It was strange to go back without my baby. But I'd missed my family so much. I was home for the first week of July. My favorite time of year, but such a bittersweet time for our family.
We had a few family outings with Dad that week. He'd had such a rough time with losing the babies. He never got to see his only grand kids, and he couldn't be there to help ease my pain. He tried to stay strong, but he's a sensitive guy. He cries a lot now...
The afternoon of the 4th we picked up groceries for the cookout and some flowers. We would make our first family trip to the cemetery since F's funeral. It was always a sad day for us, spending her birthday at such a place, but it kept us closer on those days. Afterward, the entire family, all the uncles, aunts, and cousins, would be over for burgers and fireworks.
Uncle C's girlfriend was due in a couple weeks, but she'd been very uncomfortable most of the afternoon. Something just didn't feel right to her. She worried about her baby, as any young mother would. But Uncle C refused to take her to the hospital.
As the sun sank lower behind the house, the tension in the group grew thicker. You couldn't even cut that shit with a knife. Everyone wanted to help her, but no one wanted to listen to his mouth in another of his rages. The poor girl. I always wondered how she ended up with him.
About the time the first firework went off, her water broke. The baby was on its way, whether Uncle C liked it or not.
She still couldn't shake that bad feeling. That something was wrong with the baby. That instinct that mothers have when they KNOW something is wrong. She pleaded with him. "Please don't be like this. Please don't let our baby die."
I couldn't do it anymore. I couldn't stand there and pretend nothing was happening. I couldn't stand there and watch this happen. I always hated that no one would stand up to him. I always hated that I was never around when this kinda stuff happened. I reached down into my boots for my gun. I always carry one of those now days.
He smacked her face. "That baby deserves to die. It's just gonna turn out to be a whore like its mother anyway."
I shoved the gun in his face.
He laughed at me. "What the hell do you think you're doing? This has nothing to do with you. She's a whore. And you're not gonna do anything to me. I run this family. You owe me. You all owe me. That baby's not even mine."
I cocked the gun, still in his face. He laughed again. He threw his hand up and tried to push the gun away.
That laughter. That arrogance. So many feelings rushed over me at once. So many memories flooding back. I lowered the gun. He smirked. I busted his right eye with the butt of the gun.
And then I hit him again. And again. And again. And I continued hitting him.
As I hit him, I coldly told him, "You don't run anything. This one is for the family. This one is for the hell you put them through. This one is for your destructive habits. This one is for your lies. This one, this one is for my childhood, the one that you shattered. For the way that cold metal felt on my back. For the way you stole my innocence. For the shoes you tied to the swing set so I couldn't move. For the nights I couldn't sleep because I knew you were there. For the years of hiding behind my fears. For the years of hating that monster I saw in the mirror every day. The monster you created. For the hatred and disgust I had with myself, always wondering why. Why was it me? Why did you hate your life so bad you had to ruin the life of a 4 year old? This one is for the friendships I couldn't have because I was afraid of people. This one is for the boyfriends I couldn't keep because I didn't like to be touched. This one is for the windows that I still hate to look out of in fear of seeing you outside of them. This one is for the fear of windows and what people can see through them. This one is for my sister, because of the sister that I couldn't be growing up. This one is for my parents, for the misery they went through because no one would stand up to you. This one is for the years it took to realize it wasn't my fault. This one is for all those years that I can never get back. This one is for Papaw, for the tears I've watched him cry over your sorry ass. This one is for every bill he has ever paid for you. This one is for every time you spit in his face in return. This one is for your girlfriends. For every one of them that you have battered and bruised and tossed around. This one is for every time I've had to bite my tongue because the family doesn't want to hear the truth about you. This one is for every time my brother has been compared to you, because you are nowhere near the man he is. This one is for your girlfriend. This one is for calling her a whore. This one is for that baby. The baby you are too asinine to believe is yours. For the baby you are willing to sit here and let die. This one is for my daughter that I will never hold again. This one is for my son that my family never got to meet. This one is for the scar tissue that kept them from being full term. The scar tissue that helped them die. This one is for the nightmares, all 20 years of them. This one is for the monster that I still fight every day. This one is for the guns I learned to shoot as a child. The guns that I don't feel safe without now. This one is for your arrogance. This one is for your self-righteousness. This one is for being completely full of shit. This one is for teaching my little brother how to do drugs. This one is for putting my family through hell. They aren't your family anymore. You gave them up a long time ago. This one is for the fact that I may never have kids again, and you are too sorry to even claim yours. This one is for the joys of fatherhood that you will never experience. You will never, ever hurt another woman. You will never, ever hurt another little girl and shatter her future like you did mine. That little baby is the best thing that could ever happen to you, and you are too fucking stupid to realize it. That baby deserves better than you. That baby deserves to be loved and cherished. That baby deserves to live. But you? You don't deserve any of it. You think I owe you?"
I stopped hitting him and took a step back.
"Honey, you just got everything I owe you."
I put a bullet through his forehead.
As he lay there, silent and still, I heard his baby take her first breath and start to cry......