I was an unwanted child.
My earliest memory was of a fight between my so-called “parents”.
They looked at me with scornful eyes. They vented any and all irritation upon me. They were always yelling. The man called me an eyesore every time he saw me, told me to shut up every time I cried.
How many times he’d kicked me, I didn’t recall. Nor could I remember the number of beatings the woman had given me, even as she screamed “You should never have been born!”
Bruises littered my skin. Every morning, I got a single loaf of hard bread to last the whole day.
Once every few days, I would have a chance to wash myself with the leftover bath water. They threw me out to the veranda at night, and I would curl up and sleep in any empty spot I could find among the mountains of trash outside the house.
Before I noticed, the man was no longer around the house. The woman, mind sick and heart twisted, called me a “demon” as her final words to me. The last I saw of her was her misshapen grin as her hands tightened around my throat.
When I came to, I was in a white hospital room. I was fed decent, warm food for the first time.
I vomited it all.
I didn’t speak, laugh, or even cry much. No one would love such a kid. The adults of the orphanage always hit me first before talking. They would take my food away, lock me inside a storeroom until morning, and they called it “discipline”.
What did I ever do?
Upon turning eight years old in the orphanage, I finally gave up on being a child.