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Tuesday, April 11, 2017

"Out of Control": Chapter 5

For the explanation of my current series, go to the first installment: http://bit.ly/2nnCvFx


Out of Control:
A Christian Parent’s Victorious Struggle with Child Abuse


A Memoir by Kathy Collard Miller

Chapter 5
Trusting

Bible study day finally arrived, a day I valued so much. Although it was a small group in our neighborhood, we always had a great time in the Lord. As I fixed oatmeal, Darcy walked into the kitchen rubbing your eyes, her favorite faded pink blanket trapped under one arm. 
“Hi sweetheart. Did you sleep well?”
“Mommy, what we do today?”
“We have Bible study. You get to play with the children at Julie's house.”
“Goody, goody.”
 Hearing that recently learned phrase made me giggle. Darcy looked so cute as her little round face lit up with excitement. She could be so darling. The ambivalence of my feelings pierced my heart as I realized how much I loved her when she was good and how much I hated her when she disobeyed. 
My thoughts were interrupted as the telephone rang. It was Esther, our regular babysitter. She was sick and wouldn't be able to babysit. I thanked her for calling and hung up. 
Oh, no, who am I going to get this late? Sometimes I wished I wasn’t in charge of this study. I quickly finished preparing breakfast. Please, Lord, help me find someone else. I don't want to have to stay with the kids. You know how much I look forward to this.
The fear of not finding a babysitter nibbled at the recesses of my mind as I quickly dressed Darcy and Mark. Darcy jabbered her usual one hundred baby words a minute, but I didn't seem to hear as I mentally made a list of women to call. 
“Mommy! Mommy! I want to paint.”
Darcy’s repetitious whine finally permeated my brooding. 
“No, Darcy, you can't paint this morning. We don't have time. I still have to get ready for Bible study and find a babysitter.”
“No Mommy. I want to paint.”
Darcy's insistence graded on my nerves as if someone were scratching their fingernails on a blackboard. 
“Darcy,” I shouted, “I said no. Now stop your whining.”
My jumbled thoughts tumbled over themselves. 
Darcy's face turned red. She started screaming and jumping up-and-down in rage. I grabbed her arm, whirled her around, and smacked her behind hard four, then five times. “You stop that right now.” 
As I yanked her into the air by one arm, I heard a crack from her shoulder. Yet I still carried her, feet dangling in the air, into her bedroom and pushed her onto the floor. “Now stay there until you can be quiet.” 
After slamming the bedroom door, I stood trembling in the hall listening carefully, fearfully expecting Larry to emerge from our bedroom. But I only heard the noisy window air conditioner. 
I walked to the phone. I’ve got enough to think about without putting up with her nonsense. I started calling my list of babysitters but exhausted it without luck. Tears blurred my vision. I don't want to spend two-and-a-half hours with the children. I can't even handle my own. I dressed quickly and ran a comb through my hair. 
Then I called Sally who co-led with me. Thankfully, it was her turn to lead.  I explained, “Esther is sick. I can’t find anyone to babysit. I’ll take care of the kids.”
“Kathy, just a minute. My mother is here visiting. I'll ask her to take care of them. She loves children.”
“Do you think she would?” The hope in my voice made me feel guilty so I quickly added, “No, I couldn't ask her to do that. It wouldn't be fair.”
“Oh, it's OK. Hold on, let me go ask her.”
My heart beat hard. “Oh, Lord, please make her want to do it. Please!”
Sally came back on the phone. “Kathy, she says she'll be glad to. Really, she loves to do things like this. I'll be leading this week so she doesn't have anything to do anyway.”
I couldn't hide my enthusiasm. “Oh, that's great. I'm so glad. I'll meet you at Julie's house.”
“Thank you, Lord, you did it. I still can't believe it. Thank you, thank you!
I rushed to Darcy's room. Darcy, surrounded by her dolls and stuffed animals, looked up at me. 
“We go now, mommy?”
“Yes, honey, we're going. I'm sorry I got angry with you earlier. But we have to hurry now. I knelt beside her, pressing gently on her shoulder. 
“Does that hurt?”
“No.”
I couldn't feel anything wrong. As we walked to Julie's house, Darcy grabbed my hand and skipped along beside me as I carried Mark. She looked so happy. I felt so horrible. Darcy, I'm sorry. I'm trying. I'm really trying. If I ever injure you, I'll kill myself. I couldn't stand it. Tweet that! Tears flowed down my face. Oh, Lord, I’m still getting angry. Please help me.



Chapter 6: http://bit.ly/2o0GKmL

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