October 18th, 2005
The Texas Story Project.
I remember this date at all times everyday, every night. It’s what keeps me awake at night and makes me lose sleep. It’s what makes me sleep during the day, to escape the sorrow in my heart. This date makes a shiver go up and down my spine, and fills me with dread and pain. This date changed my life forevermore and I won’t ever escape the pain that claws at my back, pulling me closer to spilling into tears.
To think I was two and five days—my life already went into rewind and took a step back, I lost something so important to my life and to my health. Without it the demons of my life attack me suffocating me until I stop struggling. This is the date my one and only loving mother died. The beautiful woman my dad loved, and the loved parent and first word spoken, Mom.
“When is mom coming back? I miss her,” I asked my daddy, he told me that mommy was going away for awhile, but he didn’t tell me how long. But daddy said she was ok, and she will be safe. What did he mean by that?
“Sweetie she ... she isn’t coming back ... But she is in a happy place, she is in a place called heaven.” I was confused, I had heard of heaven in school, but I never really thought about it, but then I wished I had paid attention in class. My dad’s words were a blur. The only thing that was on my mind was ‘She isn’t coming back...’ the words kept repeating in my mind over, over, over and over, until I cried. I didn’t want my mom to go. They say things happen for a reason, but I can’t see what good came out of her going so fast like that. I still can’t believe when my Mom left for San Antonio, she would never come back.
But as I grew, my grief was gone, almost too fast. It only took about a year for me to fully understand from when I first found out she died. I was only seven when I accepted the fact she was gone. Around that time I had no more memories of her. Just the pictures. But the sadness didn’t stop. First grade, word got around how I didn’t have a mom. People picked on me threw hateful comments at me, like they were spitting acid onto my back, and I was unable to get it off. It only kept sinking deeper into my skin. They named the flaws I have, and didn’t notice how I was good in other ways.
“HAHA! Look at her tooth! It always sticks out! That’s sooo grooossss!”
“Why do you like those colors? Those are BOY colors, weirdo!”
“How come you don’t like dolls? You like video games instead?! You MUST be crazy!”
“You buck-tooth weirdo!”
“Oh, you don’t have a mom? Well that explains why I thought you were a weird looking boy the first time I saw you!”
They kept hitting me with comments on how I looked, my teeth, the way I dressed, what certain things I liked, and how I didn’t have a mom. Now I went quiet again. I didn’t talk — only when talked to. I didn’t talk about anything involving family, things I liked, top trends, or clothing.
Just quietness. I thought more and day-dreamed more. I thought more critically on things. I thought and imagined many things. I made little worlds so that I could escape the harsh world that I was in.
So I kept living.
My heart was mangled, deformed, and ugly, but it’s my heart. My heart told me to keep going, don’t notice the ones who judge you, keep your head up and don’t look back. And I did. For the next couple of years, I made friends I lost friends, but I thought I was having a normal life for once. Then my bleeding, cut up, mangled heart?
They healed it.
My friends, my family. They helped me to heal the scars of my heart. That may never be gone, but my heart is better. It keeps beating. They didn’t care that I didn’t have a mom, they didn’t care that I liked boyish things, they didn’t care that I have a buck-tooth. They liked me for who I am. They don’t know how much they have helped me. I fear what would’ve happened had I not met them in the first place.
But I did. I got better, I don’t have scars anymore. The demons of my life don’t attack me and suffocate me anymore. There is no more acid on my back. There are no more hateful comments. I am finally happy for the first time in years, I don’t need to put a mask on anymore, I am now smiling like I used to.
Tesch G. Wheatley thanks you for reading her "little story," and notes that it felt good to write about it. She loves writing and drawing, so, if you ever are around her, she's most likely sketching away!
Posted January 09, 2018