A ROSE THAT GREW FROM THE CONCRETE
Theirs a heavy silence that drapes across the Bronx at 2am. An unforgettable dewy smell that lingers in the morning. A cold breeze that doesn’t lift until the sun has risen.
BOOM ! BOOM ! BOOM !
Deep in my dream, the banging seemed so distant and muffled.
As my mind started to wake. The Banging became more real. By this time they have been knocking for a few minutes. I suddenly felt a terrifying adrenaline rush, shoot me awake.
They started to simultaneously shout and bang. This time it was coming from the windows, the front door and the back door. The dark room I shared with my mom and siblings soon was illuminated by flashlights.
I quickly crawled over to my mom who was in a deep sleep. Not aware about what was going on because shes hard of hearing. I shook her franticly.
She woke up seeing the lights shinning threw the windows.
Her look of confusion quickly shifted into a worried look.
She looked at me and asked me what I hear in sign language.
As me and my mother sit up in the dark, frozen with fear… I take a second to listen to all the comotion outside. Signing back I think its the cops.
She signed to me to stay in the room.
Our house was still dark. My mother slowly walked over to the door. And puts her palm on the door. The banging continued.
BOOM ! BOOM ! BOOM !
MALE VOICE : “If you dont open the door were going to brake it down”
Terrified I ran over to my mom who was a few feet in front of me. I grabbed her arm. Quickly relaying the message to my mom in sign language.
My mother put her finger to her lips. Breathed then opened the door.
Four men pushed their way into our home. Voices seemed to be coming from all sides of the house. Distant sounds of radios, echoing back and fourth words I couldn't make out. A women walked in behind the men. Introduced herself and went strait to asking my mom questions. My mother sighing back she cant hear.
The women looked around and asked if there was anyone who could translate. Being I was the oldest in the house at the time. My mother pointed to me. Standing closely beside my mom. The women looked and my mom and said NO! shes to young. The rest of the conversation is a blur. But the ending the conversation still replays in my mind sometimes. An old memory that loves haunting me.
The women’s tone of voice changed and face shifted to an emotion i couldnt make out as a child. She slowly mouthed to my mom, “We are taking your kids Ms. Rodrigez. I wasn’t sure what she meant. Looking at my mother for an answer.
My mother turns to me as she chokes on words that would tare any parent apart… she cries out…
“SOFI! They are going to take you!”
TO BE CONTINUED…