Part VII: Watching Jacob Grow Up
*Trigger Warning: This short story, fictional work is Part 7 of XI and will have explicit details about pedophilia/familial child rape, abuse, poverty, and neglect. If this is something you think you should not be reading, please, do not continue.
When Jacob was born, he came spilling outta me in a rush, boy ain’t never had any patience. He came roarin’ into this world as if something big had been callin’ him while he was in the womb. Nurses surrounded me. Doctor took two looks at Jacob, thumped him on the leg, and waited for the baby wail.
That boy had some lungs on him!
They wiped him down. All of what pulsated in me seemed to have coated his little fat face and eyes. He was perfect. Perfect and imperfect. Perfect, imperfect, and a distraction. But, he was not unwanted. I wanted him. My brother. My son. I had no Mother. I had no Granny. No Daddy, either. I made a vow the moment they laid Jacob in my arms. I whispered into his perfectly imperfect ears and I said, “I am your Mama, Phara. I am your sister too. I am going to take good care of you. You have my word.”
A ten-year-old girl should never have to utter those kinda words, ever, but I did. The day we buried Mama, Jacob kicked at me harder than any other day. It’s like he knew his family was crumbling before he could set eyes on them.
Jacob Lawrence Harrison. That’s his full name now. I gave him the Harrisons' last name, no need for him carrying our Daddy’s last name with him. Boy-child don’t need that kinda reminder. He gon' have his own baggage. I won’t let him tote mine around too.
I watched him go from baby to toddler to walkin’, talkin’ glasses-eyed six-year-old genius, and every moment has been amazing. You know that gospel song Amazing Grace? I hum that to him every night. He’s my little amazing grace. We read before he goes to bed. He’s so smart, he reads his books to me. He’s keepin’ me on my toes. My boy… My boy that ain’t sposed to be here, but he is. And he’s makin’ me better.
This semester in school, I got 3 Bs, 1 C, and 1 A. The Harrisons took us out to eat to celebrate. The waitress came to our table to collect our orders. She asked Jacob what we were celebratin’ and he said just as proud as you please, “My big sister! She has excellent marks this term!” I looked at my boy, puzzled, wonderin’ how he even knew how to place all those words in one sentence to make them make sense like that. Then he took his strong, little fingers and pushed his glasses up on his nose.
He was beamin’! I am makin’ him proud. We ate our dinner and on the drive home, Dover, that’s Mr. Harrison, say, “Jakey (I don’t like that nickname), you were right on time at the restaurant tonight. You sure do have your wits about you.” I looked over to Jacob, his little lips furrowed up, curled into a U and he simply said, “Yes, sir. I was.” Cocky too!
Late at night, when I am watchin’ him sleep... When the demons won’t let me rest… When Daddy won’t get outta my dreams, I just sit and watch Jacob. His smilin’ face is so innocent. I know angels are guardin' him. I say to myself,
“My little amazing grace.”
Many of you may remember Phara. Some of you wanted to know how life was going to be for her in her future, for Jacob too. This is my attempt at trying to quiet her down. She’s speaking again. Thank you for reading.
Copyright© Tremaine L. Loadholt, 2019. All Rights Reserved