A Brief Family History
I was relaxed, nearly sleepy when he slammed into me. Maybe I should have sensed the excitement in the air. First I felt the shock of the connection: my lip hitting an eye tooth, the swelling, and the salty, metallic taste of blood.
I heard myself shouting “Fuck” and then immediately regretting it.
My lip, now numb, continued to swell.
I looked at myself in the mirror and saw my Grandmother. She wasn’t a stranger to my Grandfather’s drunken rages. Before they even had children, she was disguising bruises and making excuses.
He even hit her at a wedding. Two friends pulled him off her, brought him outside, and “roughed him up a bit.” My Uncle, as I called him, told me about it after dinner one night. “The next morning, she put make-up on his face to cover the bruises.”
That detail made me incredibly sad. In my mind’s…
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