The blood from my wrist was running down my arm but father didn’t seem to notice. His face was red and he was yelling so loud; I had never seen him like this before. But I was so scared, all I could think about was getting away from his grip. So when I finally broke free, I ran for the stairs. I made it upstairs to the bedroom with father in hot pursuit.
I didn’t know if mother was home or not. I tried to get under the blanket on the bed thinking it would protect me. I had taken my coat off on the way up the stairs. He yanked the blanket off me and I only had a cotton dress and thin panties on, my legs were bare. I saw him trying to get his belt off and I knew I was in for it!
He started hitting me on the butt and the legs with his belt and I started crying and yelling how I did not mean to break the window. But he wasn’t listening; he was too enraged. This continued for a while and I don’t know who was louder me begging for mercy or him cursing me. All of a sudden mother appeared in the doorway of the bedroom. She started yelling at father.
“Stop, you are going to kill her! She shouted!
“Do you know what she did?” He yelled back!
“I don’t care, you need to stop; she is bleeding!” Mother yelled as she grabbed his arm to stop him from hitting me again.
Father pulled his arm away from her but she jumped in front of him and pushed him back away from me. Mother was no lightweight and she was putting all her force against him to push him away and he staggered back. Father was not that big of a man but he was strong. He was always exercising and lifting weights. He seemed to lose his rage as he fell back against the wall.
Mother then sat me up and looked at where the blood was coming from on my wrist. She gasped and told him to go and get our neighbor, Mrs. D. He seemed in a stupor, so she yelled at him again to go as they needed to get the blood stopped and Mrs. D. was our source in any emergency. She always knew what to do and she always had bandages and tape and whatever else was needed in an emergency.
Mrs. D. had three boys in school, who were constantly getting into trouble, so she had to be ready for any emergency. We depended on her to be there for us and she never let us down. It seemed that I was the one in our family who was usually in trouble and I counted on her to help me on many occasions.
So it was no surprise when she came and assessed the situation, cleaned up my wound after taking a piece of glass out of my wrist and bandaged it. I was feeling much better after that. No one thought of calling the doctor, because we could not afford one usually. So I have a few scars to show for the scrapes I was in as a child.
Father managed to get his coat on and leave the house not wanting to hang around in case anyone wanted to question him. We found out later he had gone to his mother’s house, where he was always made to feel better about himself no matter what.
Although, I must say from that time on, he never hit me again. That wasn’t necessarily true of my mother, even though she saved me more times than I can count as I did get into trouble a lot it seems.
The pane of glass in the front door was fixed with a piece or cardboard from a box we had and stayed that way for quite a while. Father remained away for a long time but then that was what he did. Oh, I still have a scar on that wrist to remind me of that day.