As I looked at her, all by herself against the white fence of the house opposite to mine, I thought to myself, poor little one…
It all started early that Friday, about a month ago, but I had seen it coming, it started a few days before. The way the girl was constantly hanging around, asking everyone, even my Betty, to play with her.
Yes, Betty did play with her once in a while, though given to the fact that their ages differ a bit (Maggie had turned 11 and Betty is only 6), there were few games left for them to play with.
As the days went by, summer was even nicer, warmer, brighter; all Maggie wanted was a bit of attention. Her mother was a sort of unknown character, never seen around. It was said that she had left them a few years after Maggie was born, along with a brother. Apparently she has now a step mom, some say she is her aunt. We don’t know for sure.
All I know is that, that Friday, her “mother” did it! She came by for the first time and she saw her “daughter” sulky, lonely and upset. She wondered why. Maggie promptly replied, “Everyone is being rude to me”.
Feeling uneasy for once she bluntly asked, “How rude? ” “They keep saying mean things to me,”Maggie answered. “They who?” asked the mother.
Maggie pointed at the third house next to where she was. From my upstairs window, behind the drapes, I was able to follow her with my eyes. She dashed to the house’s backyard, knocking at the glass door there was no answer. She did not have better luck at the door bell either. She turned to Maggie and said, “Come on, let’s go, I’m calling the police”.
At those words, I went after her to try to understand what was going on. “Hi, can I help you?” She simply looked at me, turned around and left, cell phone on her right ear.
I called Maggie. “Hey, what is going on?” She was afraid,”Nothing,” and ran home as fast as she could.
Betty and her friend Lisa were playing in the basement. I said, “Lisa, fetch your mom, I want to talk to her.” But she had gone to the mall. Her brother was supposed to baby sit her. “Ok, so you stay here. Maggie’s mom called the police and I don’t want little girls around when they come.”
… … …
It turned out she didn’t call the police, but the afternoon was covered with failed attempts of mothers trying to talk to each other. Other neighbors were getting involved when the truth started to come out. Maggie had been left aside for having done things such as:
-bringing her dog to frighten the small kids;
-spitting and peeing in people’s backyard at daylight;
-using kids’ toys without permission, and running away not to give the toys back;
-having a dirty loud mouth.
Maggie is a good-looking slender, blond, blue-eyed pre-teen. She is also such a tom boy, parents don’t want their kids to have anything to do with her.
On the other hand, she was the only one who didn’t laugh at Betty when she accidently fell into the pool, and ran back home crying out of humiliation. Betty remained home for the rest of the day, being Maggie the only one she allowed near her. Maggie never spit in my yard or said the “s” word, never being unkind to Betty. To me, she was just trying to call people’s attention.
Her mother never bothered to acknowledge that.
… … …
Later that afternoon, Betty and I left to see a movie.
The offenses between both moms went on. At a certain time, Lisa’s mom was pushed and said, “now I’m calling the police!”
And they came indeed.
Everyone was against Maggie, she was sort of banned and advised by the cops to stay away from the little kids.
Poor little one! Maggie, who had no one to play with, had now been banned! It hurt me so much not being able to say a word on her behalf when it all took place. I wish I could have done something for her. I wanted her to be happy, feel loved, to feel special. Instead the only thing she was is set aside.
What is in store for her? She is only 11, I mean, she is already 11!