Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Space (01/23/06)
TITLE: Beloved Invasion
By Sharon Singley
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She screamed the words at the reflection staring back at her, as if the mirror were a porthole that would transport her words back to a different time and place, back to the time when these words should have been uttered, when they might have made a difference.
But it was too late. The damage had been done. She had wanted to tell him 'no'. In her mind she said it over and over again, but she was too frightened to force the words from her mind to her tongue. She now was a victim because she had no voice.
Wendy crumpled to the ground, burdened down by the shawl of anger and fear that had draped itself over her fragile shoulders. He was supposed to love her, not hurt her. It was her space, he didn't have the right to invade it! It was her body, her choice! And now she carried within her a reminder of his intrusion. This too, had invaded her space.
But she could terminate this invasion. After all, it was her body! Wasn't it an innate law that every human being had a right to their own space? Wasn't it every human soul's right to choose?
At least this was the mantra Wendy repeated to herself time and again. She would eliminate this problem tomorrow. She would not allow anyone to change her mind. It was her right! Her body! Her space!
She pulled herself up off of the floor with great difficulty, her heart heavy with sorrow and shame. Her legs labored to carry her to the soft, downy feather bed that waited invitingly on the other side of the room. Once her body fell limply onto the white lace coverlet, it took only moments to drift off to blessed sleep.
But her sleep wasn’t blessed. Through the night she tossed and turned, her mind tortured with dreams. Horrible, horrible dreams of children screaming, or attempting to scream. She could see their mouths open wide in terror, she could see the tears streaming down their beautiful faces, but the screams were silent.
She woke with a start, breathing in short gasps, unable to catch her breath. Perspiration drenched her cotton flannel gown. She couldn’t shake the images from her mind! Why would God torture her with this? It wasn’t her fault! She didn’t ask for this.
“It’s my body. It’s my choice. It’s my space.”
In an instant the truth wrapped itself around her troubled heart. Yes, she had been a victim without a voice. She looked down at her still small belly, her hand following her gaze. As she gently rubbed her stomach, trying to imagine the life within her, she thought, ‘This baby has no voice.’ But this baby had a right to be heard. This baby had a right to live. Suddenly the weight of the burden she had been carrying was lifted. She felt a solemn peace.
She would give this child a voice. They would not be victims, she and the child.
Her baby could sleep soundly, secure in its own little space.
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