My father glared at me, rage steaming off his face and I stood there meekly while he verbally assaulted me. Something that I’ve grown used to. So as he yelled louder, I impulsively shut my ears. An honest mistake. I wasn’t attentive when he asked me a question repeatedly until I got smacked right in the face. Literally. I staggered back, my vision becoming hazy and then the back of my head banged the wall. Somehow, I fell down, rolled from the top stair and hit the bottom of stairs. Unconsciously.
When I opened my eyes, I was in a hospital room, alone. My head hurt, my eyes, my stomach, and weirdly, a very aching sensation rose between my legs. Odd. Hm! I wonder where everyone is. Ouch, that hurts. It hurts in a way more piercing than my dad’s punch or slap in my face. Uuuuh!
My mind drifted to the moment before the incident that drove me into the hospital occured. He had just returned from his business trip that had lasted 3 months. Getting off my bed and getting out of the room took me a while and I met him right upstairs to greet him and welcome him back home.
His briefcase hit the floor when his eyes fell on me. His eyes bulged, his lips quivered and he panted for a few seconds. He slowly lifted his arm and pointed his index at my belly which was larger than it was before he left.
“Wha- what is that, Amina?”
“NO NO NO! SHUT THE FUCK UP! HOW COULD YOU GET PREGNANT?” he added softly, “How could a university graduate get pregnant out of wedlock, in this age? Are you stupid?”
“AMINA, KEEP QUIET! I know I raised a smart girl. But this fat, ugly, big-bellied woman cannot be my daughter! YOU, YOU DON’T HAVE A REGULAR JOB LIKE A NORMAL PERSON. DO YOU THINK I AM GOING TO FEED THAT BRAT YOU’RE CARRYING?” he chuckled “I can’t believe, I come home from work, ready to lay down and relax,” he swang his head in the air slowly feeling the air while he said this, “but then you people welcome me by adding a massive load on my shoulder that will last a lifetime! Amina, tell me, who is the father? Do I know that son-of-a-bitch?”
“Whaaat? YOU DON’T KNOW THE FATHER OF YOUR BABY? Oh My God Oh My God Oh My God! HOW DID I RAISE A WHORE! NO, I DID NOT RAISE A SLUT…”
As soon as he started talking like that, I knew I was screwed but I decided not to hear, let alone listen to a word he said. Instead, I observed him. I watched him gaping, pacing around the room whispering slowly to himself, turning and yelling at me so loud I imagined his voice breaking. He spat at me though. Gross. He was probably comparing me to garbage which is what he called prostitutes. My mom stood there helpless as always. This happened to her always; she wasn’t whatsoever entitled to saying a word. If she dared, dad struck her for full five minutes everytime they went to bed while he thought we were asleep. But they were surprisingly still in love. Anyway, apparently he was finally asking me to explain myself when I didn’t hear him.
He entered the hospital room with shame was written all over his face.
“What are you doing here?” I gasped, “Dad, you hurt me, go, get out, I don’t want to see you, I would rather die than have you call me a whore and hit me. Again!”
“Amina, I am so sorry! I didn’t mean to- “
“What you meant or didn’t doesn’t matter now because I am in the hospital, so get out or I’ll call security.”
He went on his knees, “Honey, please, at least let me apologise! I am so sorry that I got you here. And more importantly, I didn’t mean to-” his breath became short.
“You didn’t mean to what?” I questioned.
“Sweetie, I didn’t mean for your baby to die! I am so sorry,” he cried.
Blankness filled my face, “You – killed – my – baby!? YOU KILLED MY BABY! LEAVE ME ALONE, GET OUT! AAAH!”
“Don’t you dare call me that again, I am not your wife who you beat and make love to however you want! Goooo!”
“Amina, I am so sorry, please forgive me. If there is anything I could do now, I would.”
In that moment, I looked at him, while tears continued to fall down my cheeks and said, “There is something that you can do.”
Of course. Anything!”
“Hand me my phone, and I will tell you.”
I said to my father, “Swear to never, ever lay a hand on me, or on mom, or on anyone else. Swear it profusely.” I exhaled. I didn’t have to wait for long for his response because he vowed it all right away.
“Wow! That sounded very sincere. But I also need that in writing.” I had just recorded him.
Before he could answer though, the doctor came in with my mom and repeated to us about how my swollen abdomen was because of Ascites, the fluid in my abdomen caused by congestive heart failure, which was being treated of course. He gave me new medications and the medication for the head concusion. I thanked the doctor and he left the room.
My dad was speechless all the while and after the shock he uttered, “You are not pregnant?”
“No I am not.”
“But, but, I saw blood, you were bleeding very much after you fell.”
“Oh yeah! That was because my period of this month just started!”