I am going to continue with ‘Sheila’s Story today’, just to put the back ground together of who she is and where she came from. Just to recap:
My story starts when Sheila is three, and living with her drunken violent dad and her long-suffering mother. In a recent blog ‘One Beating too Many’ you learned how Sheila’s mother walked out on her mentally and physically abusive husband for good, much to Sheila’s relief. Then Sheila learned they were moving in with an uncle and aunt whose son she was scared of. The story continues:
Sheila was very quiet for the rest of the evening. She sat and watched her mam play at hairstylist much to the delight of Mrs Matthews whose hair was being styled. Mrs Matthews didn’t notice how tense both Sheila and her mam were, why would she? she was being fussed over and pampered. The styling and teasing was just about over when someone knocked loudly at the door making both Sheila and her mam jump. Sheila started to cry!
“Whats wrong pet?” said Mrs Matthews “there’s nothing to cry about.”
Sheila was afraid it was her dad coming to get them. I think her mam was thinking the same thing. Being scared wasn’t nice. It was Uncle Ronnie. Sheila’s mam ran to her older brother and they hugged. They talked quietly for a minute by the door and then Uncle Ronnie came in. He was a funny man with black curly hair. He kind of looked Italian! Sheila knew about Italians, she can’t remember how, but she did and she liked them.
Mrs. Matthew gave Sheila’s mam half a crown for styling her hair and then they left with Uncle Ronnie in his minibus. Uncle Ronnie had a garage and as well as fixing cars, he ran a school taxi service. The minibus was what he used to transport kids to and from school. Sheila, her mam and Uncle Ronnie all squeezed together in the front, no seat belts in those days.
“Ethel, I think you may have to stay with Bob and Gwen in West Aukland tonight!” Uncle Ronnie said “Ginny isn’t feeling so good and hasn’t had chance to make up the spare bed”
Sheila wanted to clap her hands with joy. She loved Uncle Bob and Aunty Gwen, they didn’t have any kids and always made a big fuss of her. She sat there holding her breath, waiting for her mum to reply.
“I’m not sure if they are home Ronnie, I haven’t spoken to them in weeks”
“Don’t worry” Uncle Ronnie answered. “I popped in to see them on my way here, as I was dropping some kids off at St. Helen’s school, they said you could stay as long as you wanted”
Sheila was so relieved she felt like crying again. The longer they could put off staying Joe the better, he scared he almost as much he dad did.
Sheila squeezed her mam’s hand and looked up at her.
“I love you mammy” she said. She put her arm around Sheila and hugged her close “I love you too pet”