Dawn - oroville, California
Entered on April 16, 2009
Age Group: 30 - 50
Themes: gratitude

I’ve never really understood what people mean when they say,”maybe its a blessing in disguise.” Why would God disguise a blessing? Inspired by Gregory orr’s story, “The Blessing.”Inow understand the French word “Blesser,” which means to wound. I was witness to a violent act ,that did wound and forever change me. I was twenty-one, married and had a beautiful red-headed, smurf-eared daughter named Lacy. We could not afford much, so we lived in a very small apartment complex, located in a low income part of town. Our front yards were all connected, and the apartments had large front windows facing the yard. There was never any trouble there, we all go along. Even though it was a dump of a building we kept it nice, grass mowed, garbage picked up, all seemed so peaceful there. My Father being a policeman, always taught me to be observant of my surroudings. And I found our neighbors to be an odd couple. Odd as in he was much older than her, Father-older. His appearance was rough like a fisherman, at sea awhile. Cindy on the other hand was young and beautiful, I think she was a wanna-be hippie. With her brightly colored flowing skiirts and long hair, she was the image of a flower child.

I was in the kitchen fixing lunch. Lacy was in her high-chair, Rick in the living room. Than we heard the screaming next door. Our walls were paper thin and it sounded as if Cindy was in my kitchen. I felt a very loud thump against our wall, Cindy was being hit, hit so hard our kitchen wall was vibrating.”Call 911″ I screamed to my husband. The vibration got louder and more frequent. I could hear her breathe being knocked out of her. I decided to go help her, and at that moment I looked out my window, And I saw Cindy running, running in fear. My mind said,”Go help her,”but I froze. She turned and looked at me, she was so close I could see the fear in her eyes. Suddenly she turned and began to run again. There was a shot and instantly Cindy was lying face down on the ground, lifeless. I headed for our front door, but befor I could get there my husband stopped me. Another shot! a loud thump, and I knew he had taken his own life. I could not believe what had just happened, it felt like a movie, not real. My heart was pounding, I could not stop crying. The guilt of not helping her, the anger at myself, and my husband

Ironically, my Father was the first officer at the scene, havin heard the address over the radio. He thought I was the victim. He drove his police car on the grass, next to Cindy, jumped out to see if it was me.I will never forget that day, or the look on my Fathers face. The fear and relief. I am truly blessed to bt alive, this i believe.