I was up but still laying in bed, unable to reenter that peaceful place of tranquility. I couldn’t go back to sleep because I kept hearing the grinding sound of grandma’s elliptical machine a whole floor below me.
Then the sound of glass shattering reached into my chest and gripped my heart momentarily crippling my ability to run from danger but instead urged me towards the noise. I was terrified but I had heard my younger cousin shout, “Grandma!”
I thought she fell. I thought I was running downstairs to find my grandma covered in glass on the floor hurt. I grabbed some clothes, getting dressed in strides down the stairs.
She isn’t in the room, “where’s grandma what’s happening?”
I see this young female storm into grandma’s room just off of the kitchen and I thought, “Why is he and my aunt fussing?” Then the phantom woman turned a round and I had no clue who she was. All I knew is, my cousin is about to kill who ever this woman is.
All the while grandma is on the elliptical, earphones in, completely oblivious to the ruckus in the kitchen immediately behind her.
I get between them and I ask my cousin to walk away so I can help this lady to safety, outside his reach and outside my home.
“I don’t know where I am, I’m not from here, where am I?” The terror in her voice shook me.
I asked her what happened and I asked him.
The stories saw one major difference. She thought he owed her payment, he thought he did not.
Once my grandmother was finally alerted she came out to where I was, trying to help this woman I did not know collect herself and find her bearings and chased her off of her property.
She asked no questions. She took one look, deduced what her business with my cousin was and chased her away with as many colourful words as the moment offered her.
I felt my heart hurt. I felt my love begin to cry.
This was not right. What was happening to this woman was not okay.
My grandmother fussed with my cousin about bringing trouble into her house.
The woman called the police for help.
She was taken to the hospital while the police made us aware that she would be charged for prostitution since even though neither of them willingly admitted it at first, they had also looked at her, and coupled her demeanour with the wisdom of their job and decided it “sex for money”.
He was however taken in and charged for disturbing the peace and released following finger printing and the routine.
It all happened and none of us tried to see her side. She was charged before the police arrived.
I cried when my grandmother ordered me inside and shut the door on her out in the cold and unaware of her surroundings face swollen from being assaulted by my kin.
I don’t know why their agreement turned sour and ended how it did. I don’t know what she did to him. I don’t know what he did to her entirely.
I saw all the glass in the floor. I saw him hauling her across the kitchen when I ran and stepped in. I told him to leave the house when she first said she was calling the police. And though I also helped convince him to return, I had at first betrayed love and was willing to cover for him.
I felt like one of “those women” who wash the bloody clothes then go out with placards crying for justice.
I was guilty of a lack of love.
Love doesn’t hide wrongs.
Love doesn’t chase chase woman, even if she is a sex worker, out into the cold when it is obvious that she has no idea where she is and how to leave.
My love was silent and it has had me guilty in my own conscience and hurt in my own heart.
I felt like I betrayed her.
I felt like she was even offered help. Simply charged.
Her bruises barely acknowledged though her jaw was swollen near shut.
I helped her get no justice.
She was wrong. He was wrong. But I was wrong too.
I could only pray for her redemption after the fact. I could only pray God infiltrated her day and allowed her to somewhere encounter His love and see that he made her beautiful and that he made her whole.
I prayed my Love would shoe her his love and that he would ultimately save her soul.
I decided to love too late and I hope that my loving her too late is enough.
April 10th, 2017.
I pray for your freedom!
Yours, his and my grandmother’s.