17437 Shi XX, 9th Grade, Female

Translated by Sara Qiu

My house was filled with obscure places. It was made of a bamboo rooftop and a mud wall. We stayed there for a long time. My family saved a bit of money all the way until I had four years old, to start repairing the house for 3,4 years. I started living with my grandparents since they came back home. Mum went to see me a few times and my dad only twice. So, whenever I think of this unique experience I inexplicable turn sad. Every time I saw my classmate’s parents picking them up I really wished my parents showed up at the school door and brought me home. But every time I was disappointed so almost every day I went home crying. When my grandmother knew about this she hugged me and persuaded me, but I don’t know why she started crying along with me.

In 2010, my home became short of money. My grandfather wanted to put the straw on the second floor of the pigpen. Due to the long use of the ladder without any repair, it broke. My grandfather fell from a high place, his arm landed on the ground and he fractured his wrist. At that time, my grandmother and grandfather looked for a car at midnight and went straight to the hospital. Because there was no one at home, I was entrusted to the neighbour. At that moment, I probably didn’t understand the seriousness of the matter so I fell asleep at their place very quickly. In the second day, after having breakfast at the neighbour’s I came back home and I just knew about the situation of my grandfather. Mum didn’t come back yet, but I could understand.

When I was in 9th grade, my mum wasn’t working in Liuku anymore. My sister was going to attend pre-school soon and mom had to take care of us. Our standard of living had also dropped but mum always tried hard to make our life better. Without her, I could say there would be no future for me and my sister.

When I was in 9th grade, I accidentally dislocated my arm and I had high fever which caused gastrointestinal discomfort, I was vomiting all day long. My dad which I missed finally came. He brought many things for me and my sister. I thought he was going to stay for a few days, but who knew that once he arrived he was leaving again. Afterwards there was no news from him for a long time.

  When I started 10th grade, my sister and I borrowed from others book expenses, pocket money was reduced from the original 4, 5 RMB to 3. My father however remained silent like if he vanished from the world; he did not pick up the telephone when it rang, sometimes he finally picked it up but used any kind of excuse and didn’t bother. I know my father disliked my mother for having given birth to two daughters, losing his face, that’s why he ignored us. So, he has been silent for 10 years. He finally showed up in 2016. He consistently told mum he wanted to divorce but she didn’t answer because once divorced, my sister and I would have to separate, even more, my mom will be judged. I was very sad, but I was mum’s oldest daughter, and biggest sister. Finally, as I wished, in April 2016 he divorced mum peacefully. Once they divorced, I didn’t have a home at all.


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