I was only gone a few days. 2 to be exact. I had to take Tinker to her follow up ENT appointment and schedule surgery for her. I came back today. My heart dropped out of my chest when I walked in. It was chaos. There was screaming, yelling, no structure, and the ones I have come to love, I could see their battle scars on the outside even more. They were about to take their math test. I could see what she was doing. I walked over to her and asked her if she wanted to talk, we went out in the hall.
I knelt on my knees as I always do when I'm in the hall. I looked up to her as she spoke to me. "My Mom told me she's going to bring me to the mental hospital. She said they are going to tie me down on a bed to make me stop." My heart shattered into little pieces but I couldn't let her see. The difference of me being gone 2 days, there was so much lost, so much pain she is enduring, which now is physically seen by all. I've been screaming to get her help. My hands tied, the only thing I could do was be there every day and talk to her. She told me, you haven't been here, I so mad and sad.
I looked up to her, looked at all the hair that was gone, her eyebrows, her clothes, dirty and too tight. She asked me, "Ms. FLUSSH, it doesn't even hurt when I do it, does that make me weird?" My response, no, no it does not. I told her, Blue has been to the hospital. She was surprised. I told her, you are not the only girl who does this to herself. She started to cry and said, "I thought I was the only one in the world who did this." At the hospital they will help you. They will not tie you down to a bed, you will meet other kids that are just like you, and they will give you medicine to help you also. She perked up, "Medicine, other kids like me?? People that can help me stop??"
On my knees, yes, you can get better. You will be able to stop. I took her hand, I smiled at her, I told her how much I believed in her, how smart and beautiful she is. I told her I will always be there to talk to. I told her the hospital wasn't scary, if she went there this weekend, she won't be tied down, it will help her. I told her in detail what will happen. She knows Blue, she trusts both Blue and myself, she knows that I'm telling her the truth. She is a BRAVE girl.
I stood up bent over eye to eye. I believe in you I told her. "Ms. FLUSSH, I don't know why I do this to myself." I told her that's OK...sometimes there's a reason sometimes there isn't. I asked her if she could concentrate on her math test. She said meekly, "Yes." I asked her if I could hug her. She said, "Yes." I know her clothes haven't been washed for days, I'm a huge germ freak, I wrapped my arms around her gave her a little hug. We walked back in the classroom.
The teacher had picked the clumps of hair up around her desk. She sat down, only raised her hand once to ask a question. When she raised her hand I was already onto the next tragedy of the day. I felt guilty. I graded the math tests tonight. A handful got all the questions right....a handful, and this little girl, who is so broken, she got an A+ and I am so proud. Part of me wishes she is there on Monday so I can give her praise and see her smile. Part of me hopes she's not there because she is at the hospital getting the emotional helps she needs and some medicine to help her stop what shes doing. I love them all so much, I am a frazzled mess not being there the past 2 days. I'm a frazzled mess because Tinker has to have surgery.
My heart it's still in pieces on the floor in the hallway. I have hope though. There is always hope! I will do everything and anything I can do, to love them, to listen, to let them know they are not alone. They are NOT ALONE. Their lives are just beginning, I want to so desperately help them to believe that they can do anything, they can succeed, they are not weird, they can do ANYTHING!!! I want them to know, when they are home, dealing with so much, Ms. Flussh believes, she hopes, so they can dream, believe and hope too!