As the weeks rolled on, the troubles began to start. From the knocks on the doors and windows to mom waking up to crashing noises only to find something had been knocked on the floor, the giggle that entered our home was getting bolder with every action, and with every glass broken, every fallen picture frame, I was blamed, even though I learned when I was a toddler climbing on chairs was not to be done. When I was two, I fell backward on one, and my head hit the kitchen island behind me. I was in the hospital for a week.
No matter how much I told her I did do it, she insisted I was the only one that could have done it. My father took my side and even sat her down to tell her something had gotten into the house. She wouldn’t have any of it. She didn’t believe in spooks, ghosts, or anything paranormal. I saw the look of defeat on Dad’s face, but he still told her it was not me.
So began the other thing, my parents arguing over whether I needed to be seen by a psychiatrist with my dad saying I did not, and my mom shaking her head and saying I needed to be evaluated because even a child of my age should not be lying so much. She also suggested dad see one as well, asserting that his constant defenses of my behavior were unhealthy.
Dad reached out to his family one evening, but when Mom heard the conversation, she flew off the handle, “Oh, now you’re trying to get your family to gang up on me.”
Dad looked at her and shook his head while he was still on the phone, “Yeah, I think it’s affecting her.”
Mom snatched the phone out of Dad’s hands and hung it up, “I will not be labeled as a loon by your family. I am not crazy!” She flailed her hands making Dad back away from the phone on the wall.
That was when I heard the giggle again. This time it was closer to my ear and sounded like someone scratching glass. I screamed. Both of my parents stopped and looked in my direction as I stood there covering my ears with tears running down my cheeks.
Dad ran over to me and hugged me, “What is it, pumpkin?”
“The giggle was right next to me! It was scary!”
“That’s it!” Mom’s yell was like a woman at the end of her rope, “She’s going to a psychiatrist! I won’t have a schizophrenic child in my home without medication! She’s crazy, and that’s all there is to it!”
A looked at my dad, fresh tears streaming down and soaking my shirt, “Mommy hates me! Mommy hates me!”
Dad picked me up and turned to face Mom, “Good job as if you haven’t upset her enough. You need to take your head out of your ass, and see what you are doing to her.”
“I’m not doing anything. She needs to go to a doctor. I will be making calls tomorrow.”
Dad took me to my room, dried my tears, and asked me to change my shirt, “We’re going for a walk, you and me. Your mom needs to cool off.”
I changed into my favorite teddy bear shirt and put on my Blues Clues shoes and walked out of my room.
“Where are the two of you going?” Her voice was cracking.
Dad met her stare, “We’re going for a walk. You need to calm down.”
“Fine,, while you’re out, you can eat dinner. I am not cooking tonight.”
“Okay. After our walk, I will take her to Whataburger. Do you want anything from there?”
“No, I will slap a sandwich together here.”
“Are you sure?”
We made our way out of the door and around the block a couple of times before we got back to the house and hopped in the car.
We got to the burger place and Dad got me a chocolate shake and fries, and I said I wanted to try the patty melt. I couldn’t finish it so we wrapped it up and headed to the park to get out of the house for a little while longer.
We walked into a house with pictures that had been strewed in a haphazard manner on the floor and mom crying as she swept up some broken dishes.
“Amanda, what happened?”
She stopped sweeping and held onto Dad, “About an hour after you left, the pictures started flying off the walls and Mom’s China was being dropped on the floor. What’s going on?”
“Let’s help you clean, and then we will sit and talk about it.”
It took a little past my bedtime to put the house back to where it was minus the dishes. Dad waited for me to take a bath and brush my teeth to tuck me in for the night.