A Harsh Initiation
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At fifteen, Rebekah ran away from home to stay with a friend whom she met at school. As the years went by, she became aware that she was alone even when strangers briefly intervened. Although they had relatives, those relatives became estranged from Winifred. She sunk into psychosis, requiring severe medical intervention, but it went untreated. No one cared enough to help Winifred or her child.
Rebekah tried to navigate her life independently without a support system. Now a teenager five feet tall with an hourglass figure flawless brown skin that radiated. Her oval shape face and large brown eyes, her thick flowing black hair framed her face. Rebekah’s physical appearance created even more problems for her. Some men were complete animals in their attempt to get her alone, while some older women saw her as a threat. Winifred’s instability had her continually moving from place to place. They never stayed anywhere for more than a year. After one decisive move, Winifred left Rebekah alone to go out of town for a couple of days. While Winifred was away, the lock to the door of their apartment broke. Unsure of what to do, Rebekah asked a man who operated a business next to their dwelling, building cabinets, for help in fixing it. “Mr. Brown…? My mother is away, and the lock on the front door to our apartment is not working. Could you please fix it for me, sir?”
“Where did your mother go…?”
“I don’t know, sir. She said she would be back in three days.”
“What’s wrong with the door?”
“I don’t know. I cannot lock it! When I placed the key in the lock, the cylinder will not turn!”
“Ok. When I am through here, I will come and fix the lock for you!”
“Thank you, sir!”
Late in the evening, she reminded Mr. Brown about the lock. He assured her, “Rebekah, I will fix the lock as promised.” Then he went on to inquire, “Do you have a boyfriend…?”
Naively Rebekah asked, “Why are you asking me that, sir?”
“You are a beautiful girl, and if you don’t have a boyfriend, I would like to be your boyfriend!”
It was at that moment, her heart sank. She knew she would have to be careful of her approach to others. Help was hard to find, and she was among sharks always ready to bite. Several hours passed, Mr. Brown had not shown up. It was eight at night, and Rebekah knew she had to protect herself. She slowly pushed the cabinet loaded with glasses and dinnerware to the door’s entrance as a barrier for intruders.
Rebekah was asleep in bed at around midnight when she heard the sound of glasses and dishes rattling in the cabinet she had placed as a makeshift intruder detector in front of her broken door; the noise startled her. She knew that it was Mr. Brown trying to enter her home, but she was prepared for him not to enter.
She would learn to always be one step ahead of the foxes with each passing year since she would become quite familiar with many of them. Time, however, would prove to be a harsh teacher for her.