Bitch Please! by Xavia Kemena
" She Hit Me "
I just couldn’t concentrate in elementary or high school. Despite
getting A’s and loving school, I would disrupt classes every day.
The only time I was quiet was when I had a ‘fever’. I didn’t have
a cold, I wasn’t sick, but I’d still have a high fever that left me
totally incapacitated. During those days, I couldn’t talk, couldn’t
eat my lunch, I was disorientated and other students had to
help me to and from classes.
When I was normal, I’d talk while the teacher was talking and
act out. I honestly did not do that on purpose. I was absolutely
oblivious to what I was doing. Yes, the teachers would chastise
me, but it didn’t sink in that I was doing anything wrong. Their
constant complaints and harassment baffled me. I didn’t
appreciate them singling me out and I told them so. I always
spoke my mind and often blurted out things that were best left
unsaid. I know that now, but I didn’t know that when I was a child.
The worse and most wonderful times, was when I couldn’t stop
laughing. My cousin Jean sat next to me and she always did
something to make me laugh. She was cool as a cucumber, and
never laughed out loud. Me, I let go with gusto!
One day we had to bring things to school to make an impression
in clay. Jean brought a toy car. When she started driving that car
all over the newspaper, crashing into things, backing up, going
real fast....I lost it completely. I laughed so long and so loud that
the teacher made me stand in the hallway until I stopped.
Eventually I did stop, took a deep breathe and went back in the
classroom. But the moment I sat down, Jean started driving that
toy car again, so it was back to the hallway!
Teachers made me stand in front of the class as punishment for
misbehaving. One teacher made me hold my arms out, with my
palms up. Then she placed a thick dictionary in each hand.
This torture was suppose to stop me from laughing and disrupting
class. It didn’t work. I stood there the whole time, giggling about
the images that were dancing through my head. It was as if I
wasn’t in that room at all. I was off on a wonderful journey where
I had a normal childhood. I honestly did not see the teacher, the
students or anything in that classroom.
No, I wasn’t mentally challenged. I was just very creative.
In today’s world, I’d be diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder,
and be doped up with medication.
I’m sure the teachers thought I was unstable back then too.
However, instead of asking me what was wrong, the school
decided to bring in the big guns. They moved my cousin Jean
and had someone else sit next to me. I think I glanced at the
new student, but it was like seeing her off a distance. Nothing
about her registered. I wasn’t ignoring her either. It’s just that I
wasn’t aware of this new ‘student’ for more than a second, if even that.
I acted like I normally did. I talked, started laughing at something,
answered any question the teacher asked me. Raised my hand
to answer other questions or comment on class work. Did the math
problems, wrote a story, took the history test and got A’s on every
Then I went back to my world. I started laughing again and talking
out loud. Suddenly a hand swung around and hit me right in my
damn face! I didn’t know what the hell was going on. This new
’student’ had just slapped the shit outta me!
I looked over at her. My fists were already balled up to punch that
bitch. I didn’t mind a good fight, if it came down to that. My hands
dropped when I saw who it was. It was my mother.
My mother had been sitting next to me for a couple hours and
I didn’t even know it was her. I hadn’t paid any attention to who it was!
All of that changed when she slapped me. I kept looking at her,
waiting for her to say something. Mom didn‘t even look at me.
She just sat there, looking straight ahead, like she hadn’t just
slapped the shit outta me in front of everybody.
The trauma lasted a couple minutes more, then I forgot all about
the slap. I forgot mom was sitting beside me. When I look back,
I realize I didn’t just forget; it was like it never happened. The new
‘student’ had no impact on me. She went back to not existing at all.
I went back to being me. Laughing, day dreaming about having a
normal childhood, drawing my fantasy life. I couldn’t draw very
well, so my happy family were stick figures. Stick figures with
big smiles on our faces.
At home, I had to face reality. He was beating on mom again.
Calling her all kinds of horrible names. Breaking glass. To this
day, I still cringe when I hear glass breaking. The sound enrages
me. Before I learned to control that rage, I’d kick anyone’s ass if
they bothered me. Man or woman, any size. If I couldn’t get them
right away, I’d get them later on. But back then, I was a little girl
and I couldn’t kick his ass for beating my mother.
By the time his violent out bursts were over, I’d be so scared,
so hyped up, I couldn’t do my home work or sleep. I couldn’t
sleep in that house. Either my oldest brother was tormenting
me, or that man was beating mom.
My oldest brother was deranged. He thought it was funny to
wake me up by putting a rubber snake in my bed. I’d wake up,
see it and start screaming at the top of my lungs. By the time
mom came to see what was wrong, he’d remove it and act as if he
had nothing to do with it. He tormented me for years. I always told
mom what he did to me, but she didn’t think it was serious.
It was serious. I never forgave him.
When mom's first piece of trash went to prison, she hooked up with an even worse monster.
In mom's day and in that area, a woman couldn't get a house on her own. In big cities like D.C. women even had to present a 'marriage license' to get a government job and we were no where near a big city. So single women with kids or without kids, had to rely on a man to get them a house and if any were available, a job as well.
It was the 2nd monster that molested me. He had been touching me all along and that's
why I had those ’fevers’ in school sometimes. My mind would block it as much as possible,
and I’d go into a comatose state. My entire body would freeze up and I’d ‘fall unconscious‘.
That’s the term I used rather than say I fainted. The next morning, I’d have a fever.
I’d be so disorientated that I couldn’t function.
Since I couldn’t sleep in that house, I slept on the bus to school.
And slept coming from school. The rocking motion of the bus
allowed me to sleep soundly for 15 minutes each way.
I couldn’t do my home work in that house either, I’d do it school,
during recess. If anything was due before recess, I'd fail it.
I got so upset when a teacher failed me for not doing my
home work. I’d tell them why I didn’t do it, but they would just
stare at me like I was speaking Greek. It was their way of
getting back at me for disrupting class so much. The same
reason I couldn’t do my home work, was the same reason I
disrupted class. But I guess that connection was lost on these
people with degrees up their ass.
Or maybe there was nothing they could do to help me. In those
days, adults didn’t talk about mess like that. No one said
a word, until it was too late.
When I think back or think forward, I’m grateful that we weren’t
being beaten too. Yes, my mother did slap me in school that
day, but she didn’t beat on us or allow anyone else too. I can
remember every time she ever laid a hand on me and when it
Until I was around 7 years old, I use to do a very strange thing
that I didn't realize I did, until I couldn't do it anymore.
Ever time it rained, I’d tear my clothes off, run outside and
dance in the rain and mud. I couldn’t help myself. It was like
the rain put me in some kind of trance. It didn’t matter whether
it was 20 degrees outside, snow on the ground or 90 degrees.
Rain was my god.
One day, mom told me it was going to rain and that I couldn't
go outside naked anymore. Something about me getting older
and men might try to hurt me if they saw me naked. Mom was standing
beside me, but her voice sounded far away. All I could hear clearly
was that the rain was coming. I could almost feel the first delicious drops
on my skin. Cold little touches that made me giggle. It was time.
I flew out the door before mom could stop me. I tore my clothes
off and started dancing. It rained so hard. The mud felt like
velvet under my feet. I was in another world.
Suddenly I was being snatched back to the world I didn’t want
to be in. The real one. Hands were lifting me, taking me back
inside. Inside that oppressive house where the gods couldn’t
see their little dancer. I was kicking, biting and punching at who
ever was holding me. The hands let go and dropped me on the
couch. I was still out of my mind with rage and flew into the
person, hitting them with all the strength I had! I tried to go
back outside, back to the rain, to the mud, my dance. That’s
where I belonged. I ran for the door, but it was locked. I tried
the windows, they were locked too.
Eventually I calmed down and went to sleep. When I woke up,
I only had a vague memory of what happened. It was like
something that happened a long long time ago.
That was the end of me dancing in the rain, naked.
The next time she hit me, was the last time. I was 8 by then.
Mom was hugged up with that monster on the couch. My oldest
brother was sitting in a chair and I was catty corner to
him in another chair. I didn't like being near him or mom‘s
boyfriend, so I kept my distance.
As usual, my brother was ragging on me about something.
Mom and her dirty dick thought it was funny. I was not amused.
In fact, I jumped up and started whaling on his ass. I knew
I couldn’t beat him, but I could get my point across. I was so
mad, I said a curse word; ’damn’ or ’shit’.
You didn’t curse in front of your mother under any circumstances.
Not even when you were grown. And if a curse word did slip out when
you were grown, you immediately apologized and took it back. If you
didn’t, you'd get a decisive slap up side your head.
I said ‘damn’ and mom got mad, jumped up and started hitting
me. I was so angry I didn’t feel it or pretend to cry. I faced her.
Without making a sound, I stared at her. She understood. Mom never
hit me again.