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Deliver Me From Evil Series


“You are my weakest child.” The gangly expressions on my mother’s face could send a resonating sensation of utter resentment through me.  I was a lost cause, a waste of her time, of space, and of breath.  The disappointment she felt toward me was crippling. Her words spoke life, or rather death, to the adult I could have become.

I’d spent many years pining over the curses spoken over my life, by the vessel that was used to usher me into this world.  According to my mother, this woman, who in her delight conceived me, in her transgression for nine months, carried me, and in pain, nearing to death’s door, as the saints of old would describe, gave birth to me.  Yet, something deeply rooted inside of her would not allow her to show me an ounce of love, nor a bit of affection toward me.

My mother, with her cascading smile, her one gold tooth, shining like the sun, could be compared to a great theater performer on opening night.  Instantaneously she would transform from the mother we knew to someone who was socially acceptable.  It was done so effortless, quieting her tone and softening her mannerism, she could become quite lady like, demure to strangers and even foe alike whenever called upon.  Mommy ruled over our family with crowning authority; much like the proverbial Queen of Hearts from the childhood fairy-tale, “Alice in Wonderland”.  Often times it was, “Off with our heads”.

My father, he was a docile man; meek and mild.  Daddy was from the beautiful cascading shores of the West Indies.  Why he had ever left such an exotic home, I would never know.  He had lived here in the United States since he was a young man.  However, the intensity of his accent would have led anyone to believe that he stepped off a boat in Ellis Island just this morning. Daddy was broad in stature, he had a strong brazen voice and with reverberating sound; he would call out to us from anywhere in the home, near or far, and you had better answered.

In our house there was a fast and hard, unspoken rule, Mommy was the disciplinarian. She was relentless in her pursuit of correction, we were all whooped, beat, spanked, whatever the word you chose to use, it all amounted to the same thing, corporal punishment, and no mercy.  Daddy rarely ever spanked us for anything; he had such a compassionate spirit.  It’s with a deep sincerity that I do believe they parented us the best way they knew how and in my heart of hearts I know they loved all of us.

Us.  There were nine of us, to be exact.  Who could ever imagine, nine, children, nine mouths to feed, nine bodies to clothe, nine very distinctly different personalities, all under one roof.  The thought of such a thing boggles the mind.

My oldest four siblings were the result of my mother’s first marriage.  In vivid references mommy would described her ex-husband as a mentally, verbally, and physically abusive man.  I don’t know much about that.  I wasn’t there.  That’s a story only my siblings can tell.

Our grandmother was known to us phonetically as “Grumma”.  She was a petite woman with the strength of two yoked up oxen.  That was one lady you wanted in your corner at all times.  On the one hand, she had Sampson like strength, she would till the ground, cultivate the ground, and harvest the crop from the ground, virtually by her self, and we were of little use to her.  She kept her home and cared for us as she had given birth to each and every one of us herself.

On the other hand, she knew God, and believe you, me, He knew her.  Grumma would salute every morning in prayer; she would celebrate every noon day with prayer and no matter where she was located, she topped off every evening with a resounding prayer.  Grumma’s prayers were always effectual and fervent.  She called out to God for each and every one of us by name, in the chronological order in which we entered into this world.

I am certain she is the reasons why I am still here.  Why we, the nefarious nine, are all still here, it is the direct result of that little lady’s prayers. I thank God for her; she was the only one in our family wise enough to serve God.  Despite my grumblings, Sunday, after Sunday, the Church of God was the only teachings we had ever received.  It was in that little church that I first asked Jesus to come into my life.


judy washington

 Judy Washington, Spiritual Counseling Director and Co-founder of the Christian Counseling and Wellness Center for Women, has over 20 years of experience in mental health counseling, counselor training and consulting. Her teaching and interests include life structuring, career and education counseling, spirituality and mental health, integrated with prolific teachings based in theology and spirituality.

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