He didn’t want to come inside the house he said. He was scared and crying. He didn’t mean it to happen, he said. It wasn’t his fault. He was shaking like a leaf. This tiny, skinny, 9-year old boy, too small and skinny for his age. He sat just outside the front door. His head bent down while sniffing and holding on to his school uniform tightly, his knuckles white. Everyone was surrounding him now, asking, shouting, and I stood there held him by the chin and looked at his face.
My heart-ached. I just don’t know what to say. I took a deep breath, and asked what happened? I shouldn’t have. I should have known. Black and blue, swollen pair of eyes stared back at me and he cried. He’s got a big bump on the left side of his temple. I should have known. I said, “Come inside and we’ll look at you in a brighter light.” He followed. My step was heavy. My heart bled. It was as if I was holding my breath for the longest time that when I let go, tears would go with it. But this is not the time to be weak. I have to be strong for the bullied kid, my only son.
We had to go. He has to feel important and supported now. It doesn’t matter what time it was but we had to go see the doctor. He timidly and patiently follow doctors instructions. Hell, he answered all questions which I felt made him want to stop everyone from asking and just be left alone for a moment. He was brave. Out of nowhere he asked, “Mom, do you think I can forgive Diaz?” I don’t know what to say. Without waiting for my response, he said, “I saw a saying on grandma’s Facebook wall that weak people revenge, strong people forgive and intelligent people ignore. What do you think I am?”
I looked at him lovingly, not really knowing what to say. “Maybe not now. You may not forgive Diaz now because you’re still feeling the pain. But you would have to decide what kind of person you are.” Calmly and knowingly he said, “I will be an intelligent person for now. I will be ignoring him for now.”
I can’t believe this happened to me or to my kid. It was a painstaking decision for me to enroll him in “just” some school. I had a lump in my throat from keeping myself from crying. He is different. He is special. He is so small and tiny and innocent on the hospital bed. I should have known. He could not have experienced this if I had a better judgement. In truth, I cannot blame no one but me. For this would never have taken place if I was a better mom.
This was 3 months ago. I am stronger and more determined to give the best to my kids. He came home smiling one day. In tow were 4 boys…oh so much bigger than him. Heavy on the weight and much bulkier. He introduced his new found friends. First time he ever said “Friends” in all his years in elementary school. He said he loved the teachers, his classmates even the school guard and most of all he loves the new school because, he is not a bullied kid any more.
I knew I won the battle. Not the court battle I know I can’t win. But the battle inside me knowing that I made the right decision for my son’s welfare. I knew I won his heart and trust and he won far more than me, and he is continuously winning everyday. As I see his face lit up when he talks about school. I won because I know he will be okay.