My aunt and my uncle.

I walked into the house through the garage.  She was lying next to the washing machine, unconscious. Her head was in a pool of blood.  I kneeled down to see if she was breathing. She was. I ran to open the door kitchen door and he was sitting at the table drinking a beer and watching basketball.

I screamed at him and told him she was on the floor bleeding and needed help.  Without looking at me he said in a calm tone, “She’s fine. Let her be.” I was horrified.  I screamed more and after a moment he put down his beer, got up and went out to witness her.

He kneeled down as I had and began to shake her as if she was sleeping.  She moaned. He told her to get up and take a shower then he walked back inside.

I stood staring at her until she opened her eyes.  She stared at me without saying anything so I assumed she wanted me to help her up. When she sat up I saw the 2 x 4.  It had nails in it and the nails are what caused the profuse bleeding. Her hair was now matted and coagulated on the right side of her head. She must have been in that position for hours.

I walked her to her bedroom then retreated to the spare room they were allowing me to stay in. I needed somewhere to live for three months until I graduated from high school. They had just given me the okay the prior week.

I had regularly witnessed my mother be physically beaten by various men but it was usually live. Being part of the whole experience I had never walked in on the aftermath only. I wasn’t sure what to do so I sat straight as a board on the edge of the bed breathing shallowly and staring at the wall for about an hour. When I came out she was walking around with a towel around her head and attending to chores as if nothing had happened.

I followed her out to the garage as she took a load of laundry to wash to ask her if she was okay. I looked down and saw the blood on the floor had been cleaned and the 2 x 4 was nowhere to be seen.  Without looking at me she told me she was fine and asked me to do the dishes and prep dinner.  I didn’t know what to say so I went to do the dishes and prep dinner.

Her death.

What am I grateful for?

I’m struggling to be grateful for this memory or experience.  

I know there is a lesson hidden in everything and in the lesson I can glean gratitude.  

I will need to do some work to uncover the lesson here so I can let the weight of this memory go.  I will come back to include the gratitude points very soon.

UPDATE 5-31-17: Gratefulness identified at on protocol development.