Or was it not about violence, but her sons, her sons that she could believe had every right to let their anger and hurt coarse through their bodies in a way I was not allowed? If I had fought him off, if my mother had come home one afternoon, her son’s body bruised, me crying and explaining what happened, would she have demanded me to apologize?
When my brother took me to my room, did he know his place within the family was assured? Did he know how haphazard he could be, how risk-free his secrecy was, did he know that the cost for all of this would never be on his shoulders? When my brother took me to my room, was that the moment it was over for me? Was that when the path would veer, when it would spill me down the side of a cliff, lost and abandoned, and I would no longer count as one of their own? When I left my room, my hips rolling in ache and stiffness, was that a gate? Did it shut then, and I just didn’t know it?