By Anya Peters
A heartbreaking actual tale of 1 little girl's seek to discover a spot she may possibly name home.
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Extra resources for Abandoned : the true story of a little girl who didn't belong
If he had been able to find out who my father was, he might well have blackmailed him, or just told his wife and family what he knew. He was always threatening to write to my grandparents to tell them that Kathy had ‘stashed her bastard’ in London with them. ’ I asked one night after my uncle had drained the last of his vodka and staggered up to bed, leaving us all huddled around her in the aftermath of one of his rages. ’ The others giggled and I swung my eyes away, shivering the words out of me one by one as I counted the twists of ivy repeated in the pattern of the curtain hanging across our back bedroom door.
It was only supposed to be a temporary arrangement, just until the day she could come back to get me. But that day never came. She did come back—four or five times a year on visits—but she never took me with her, though every visit I was terrified that she might, that my uncle’s constant threats that ‘this’ time he was going to see to it that she took her ‘baggage’ back with her would be carried out. Mummy had three other sisters. She was the eldest and Kathy was the youngest, still a child at the time Mummy left Ireland to make a life for herself over in England, and the only one left at home to look after their parents if ever they needed it.
I sit wedged between orange cushions on the end of the fake-leather sofa, shivering, helpless, contorted with fear and the effort to stop my crying, waiting for him to start back on me. The terror of what he is doing and of Mummy leaving forcing my mind out of my body, until the sound of her head being knocked like a coconut against the living room wall jolts me back—not knowing whether to look or not look, listen or not listen, trying to reverse the flow of tears—to stop feeling. That was the hardest part of growing up: learning not to cry, not even allowed to express the pain of it.