At school, I start to understand what happened last night and why it was so very, very hellish.

I am remembering the events after Natalya died—or fragments of them. I am not so much remembering the sensory aspect or the narrative aspect as I am remembering the emotional aspect.

During assembly, I am watching my Class 4 girls standing in line—there is one who is not singing the national anthem, which I myself do not know. She is looking around, not standing at attention, not singing, not doing anything she is supposed to do. She is staring around. And she looks sad. So I notice that, because she is not very attentive in class either. Perhaps because she is sad.

I see that, I make a note of it. After that it is like I am gone, suddenly. Inside, I have a very different sense and I have a fragment of a sensory memory of abuse. It is a very small piece and the emotional sense that goes with it is not that strong. The main thing is that I feel different inside. It is the feeling of having switched, but I am just standing there, not doing anything, and it is only a small, vague piece of memory and so it is not all that clear who I have switched into. Probably, it does not matter.

So I stand there, switched, with these fragments of memory, feeling odd. And then assembly is over. I go back to my desk to finish planning for the day.

There is a change I hadn’t quite anticipated—it is deworming day, and they are to eat only after taking the deworming tablet and they take the tablet in first period and are to eat during second period. I thought they were to eat during first when I am not teaching.

At any rate, it leaves me with 20 minutes free. And it’s then it falls into place in my head. The abuse after Nata died at home was terrifically intense—I won’t describe it now. I have mentioned it elsewhere, and that’s not really the point. The point is I have, in fact, escaped Yuri, but I haven’t escaped my father so life is not really better. It is worse, because now Natalya is not there and now my father is hurting me more. I don’t know then that it’s going to get better from there, that I just have to survive this little stretch of horror and at least the abuse will stop. I still have to live with her death, but I don’t have to live with anything else anymore.

But for that bit, I have it all. I have grief and the trauma of her murder and I have my dad’s brutal, brutal abuse and I have absolutely no one to help me with it. Life has gone from torture to hell. And I have no idea it will ever get better.

So, obviously, when I get the emotional flashbacks of it, they are unbearable. It was unbearable. It was more unbearable then than it had ever been since the ritual abuse eased off some time after I turned seven. Last night, at bedtime, that is what I was remembering. She is dead and life has become hell.

Today, this is all sort of percolating up. Right now, it is lunchtime. I am almost halfway finished with the day, but not quite. The morning has gone swimmingly, but I have the most challenging classes left and, of course, I am also more tired now. Then there is club. And then a football match to watch.

I hope I can do it.

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