I was admitted into hospital, this time I was bleeding and I spent two months in there.. To be honest I was ok with this. As I was now receiving a minute amount of sympathy from D’s family.
One day when I was eight months pregnant. I was sitting on my bed it was visiting time. I knew D wasn’t coming that evening as he was working. He worked as a carpenter. I heard footsteps which sounded like a mans steps; not the ladylike clippetty clop, As I was on the run, I was always expecting my children’s father to show up at some point and kill me. I felt vulnerable all the time.
I looked at the clock on the wall it was visiting time, I knew I wouldn’t get any visitors as I didn’t really know anyone in this country, so I picked up my magazine, I recall I had read this magazine before but it was all I had and so, I tried to read everything on the pages, even the adverts. I had just turned to the puzzles when I heard footsteps..
For some strange reason I was uncomfortable that day, I recall this day like yesterday, it felt like something was going to happen. I sat up in the bed and pulled my white sheets to my chest. In the ward that day was two other women, one in the bed in front, and one to the right beside me. However, I recall she had left the room at that point. There was someone coming, a man, I could tell by the footsteps so I put down the magazine I was reading, I sat up, cold sweat came over my body, but although the visitor was indeed a man he was visiting the lady next door. He left to go and find her
“I really need to calm down” , I thought to myself.
I lay back down and picked up my magazine. After a while I heard more footsteps again, well these were the steps of tiny feet and women’s feet. I knew they weren’t for me as I didn’t have visitors. So I relaxed. However as the steps became closer, I realized they were a mans footsteps. I could see the shadow behind the glass. I felt my friend anxiety returning. My heart was thumping, I didn’t really believe it was Eric, as there was no way he would have known where I was. I listened…I waited, sheets drawn up further to my chest.
The footsteps got nearer, I kept looking. The person turned the corner, then I saw the shoes, you know those moccasin type shoes, and I knew. My goodness he had found me. Suddenly, he was in front of my bed. I tried to grab the bell but he marched right into the ward and grabbed it from me. The other woman had her curtains drawn, typical, she couldn’t help me.
He drew the curtains and held me in my throat. I could feel my eyes becoming watery. As life ebbed out if me, my new word that day was Terror… “You thought you could take my children, and I wouldn’t find you” he snarled. He had one knee between my legs. It was pressing into my belly. I could feel my last dinner rising to my throat as panic set in. I tried to shuffle on my bottom up in the bed, no use he was stronger than me.
I didn’t scream but I frantically, managed to push the jug of water and it fell on the floor. It was on the side table. As the water crashed to the floor he stopped. It worked. I immediately jumped off the bed and drew the curtain. I pretended we were friends, as I was a coward and didn’t want anyone in the room to hear. I continued to wipe up the split water. The pain in my throat was very real.
My children’s father turned up, I don’t know how he found me or why he turned up but I was definitely scared. However, the strangest thing happened after I got up from wiping the floor. He started to cry. I cannot recall if he apologized but I know he definitely cried. He then walked out the building. I was always a compassionate person and despite how he treated me. I felt sad too. I wasn’t sure if he cried because I was no longer his property, or because in all the time he had been abusing me. I had never fought back.
I recall feeling sad then as I didn’t want to be in this position. I was not happy in the new relationship but I didn’t miss the old one either. I cried but I really didn’t know why I cried. Maybe I should have stayed, I thought, because despite the beatings my children would have had their real daddy. After all I had always wanted a family.
When he reached downstairs and passed the window, I went and looked out the window, I saw him shoulders hunched and walking away wiping his eyes. I didn’t know what to do with myself but I wandered what my life would have been like? would I have made it out alive? Maybe I made the right decision after all. I guess I will never know.
I went back to my hospital bed that evening with a pain in my throat and a heavy heart.