Friday 10 August 2012

Five Months and Five days Old

That's how old his baby was when the father took her . Took her to a house and sodomized his baby.

The woman in front of me has recently had the kaleidoscope pieces of fractured memory, click together. She had telephoned the police that night her baby was taken and traumatized. Her soul had refused to connect the date of the call,  with what she knew later. Until now.

He had come back with the baby, saying she screamed so much that he had to bring her back. The baby was like a gray rag doll. No muscle tone. When the terrified mother changed her diaper, there was a burned red mark around the anus, as if a red hot 2 dollar coin had been held there. With a convulsion, the baby expelled an amount of whitish,  slimy liquid. The mother said she thought it was diarrhoea. She said that she felt unreal.That she thought it wasn't diarrhoea but could not conceive of the possibility that anyone could do this to a baby. She thinks now that some primal part of her being "knew" what he had done, but that her mind and soul simply could not understand it. But the date she phoned the police is burned into her brain. For the later realization.

The anguish she still lives does not show - except in her eyes. I cannot look too much. The anguish reflected there is too much for me to experience. I can only listen. And record.

She had told the father she was worried sick about the baby's health. She wanted to take her to the hospital. He said no. As he was murderously violent, she acquiesced. She couldn't help the baby if the mother was killed. She took the baby a couple of days later.The baby wouldn't eat or drink. She tells me that years later she learned that rapists know that babies and children heal quickly. He had wanted her to wait so the doctors wouldn't see the raw red friction burn mark.

Now the tears come. Silently. Running down her face. This tears my heart to shreds.

And- what happened after, I ask.  He never stopped. He particularly went after the next baby. Committed the same crime around the same age. Then groomed her. A bitter laugh. I learned a whole new vocabulary in the following years. Grooming, dry humping etc. I never stopped asking for help- and nothing ever happened.  I had told everyone who by law, was supposed to act to protect the children. A social worker came to the house and asked him if he beat me, she continues. He had said yes, she needed it.Another came later and recommended family therapy and wrote a report on housekeeping.Nothing. So she went for divorce. And lost custody.

She told me how the first baby had told and tried and tried to escape/stop the abuse. She told me how the youngest had tried also. They had all tried.

And now - - -I dare to ask. I don't know. I think they are all alive (there was an older third who was also abused-differently) I think there is an unusual- complicated contact with one or both . But I don't know. Not for sure.

As I type this, it is dripping rain. I imagine it to be that mother's tears, falling gently. I hope they fall on those children, now adults and help them realize the love that mother has always had for them. Maybe that knowledge might help mitigate the grave injustice our world dealt them.

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