Posted: April 10, 2015 in jail
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Her cuts were strong and deep. No hesitation marks. No second thoughts. Just clean, firm, and deep. The decision was made and she carried it out. Her room was clean and tidy. What few bills she had were paid. Her laundry was done and placed in bags. She didn’t have money for suitcases, but that didn’t matter. Everything was perfect. Her bed was made. She even fluffed the pillows and smoothed out the blankets

A note had been left to give all of her belongings to her daughter, but she didn’t know where she was or if she was even alive. She had given her up for adoption and never looked at her face. Her daughter was the result of rape, but there had been so many, there was no way to know who the sperm donor was, not that it mattered. She left her medical records next to her note, just to make it easier for everyone.

She had started out as a normal and happy child. Just like most of us, but she was snatched away by an insane and drug addicted mother when she was 5. She was often sold to men to pay for her mother’s addiction. Soon that beautiful child was turned into nothing more than a bartering tool. What humanity she had been born with was soon gone.

I remember her dead eyes and slouched shoulders. But that’s all I remember. She wasn’t anyone who stood out, who said anything, or did anything remarkable except one thing:

She learned how to disappear. I don’t know how she was able to do this, but often times, she would be sitting there and yet you never really saw her. You would forget she was taking up space. Your eyes would scan the room and yet you’d never see her.

On her last day of life, I imagine she may have smiled. I like to think she did. I can’t say what she did was right or wrong, though I wish she had stayed. I wish her life had turned around enough to give her hope. I wish she had called, but I’m not surprised she didn’t.

She was made into nothing at an early age.

She had disappeared years before she slit her wrists.

  1. Kent Miller says:

    It’s great to see another article, Susan. I’ve missed them. It is a sad and disturbing tale though. She was sent down a path of desolation at a very young age.

  2. Equus spirit says:

    I’m so sorry, Susan. Your clients seem to mean so much to you and you seem to take each one of these as a personal failure. It would be so hard not to do that.

    I have a CASA kid right now that has a somewhat similar background-though not as lurid. There is hope for her in spite of the fact that she is also autistic-and one of the brightest kids I’ve ever met. The abuse made her into an offender herself. The autism keeps her from understanding the treatment program-so far. We’re working on it.

    God has a very special place for you. All of you folks are so special. Blessings on you always.

    Ellen Wright, Georgia CASA

    • Susan Lewis says:

      Thank you. I’ve been working on getting published but every so often, a blog post comes out of it.

      She wasn’t given much of a chance as a young child.

    • Susan Lewis says:

      Don’t give up on her. I know you won’t. Some people just have the deck stacked against them from the beginning. I can’t ever say what I would have done and I can’t say I didn’t try but…damn it, right?

  3. Jake says:

    The story is familiar.

    It’s often easier to disappear than continue to strive for/pretend to be “not broken” because that’s always the goal: “Stop being broken.” Thing is, sometime a thing gets broke can’t be fixed.

    In recent months, I have come to understand that it’s actually okay to be broken. I mean, what does a creative person do with a broke thing? They make art.

  4. Susan, you write such elegant prose (I mean that in a mathematical sense of consciousness) in a story of deep heartbreak. There must be so many in this world that ‘disappear’ from our lives and we never think to look for them. Very sad!

    • Susan Lewis says:

      Thanks so much. That’s nice to hear since I was convinced last night that I can’t get a story done because I have no idea what I’m doing. *sigh*

      There are many and maybe we can all just think of one and reach out to them.