She sat in the closet, feeling ants march along her skin. She was so hungry but knew if she cried, it would only make it worse. In the past when she cried, he would hit her from her chest down to her stomach. As her stomach growled, she thought about how long she had been there. To a six year old, it seemed like forever. In reality, she had been there since six p.m. the night before. Wishing she didn’t have to stay there, she heard the voice of her mother, her real mother, and longed for her.
“Felicity!” she would say. “Aren’t you hungry? Do you want me to eat your food? Maybe I should give it to Bird Bird? Or maybe Mickey Mouse? Do you want them to have your food?”
“No, mommy! I want my food!”
“Then you should be a good girl and eat it. Not everyone is as blessed as you to have food.”
“Does Big Bird eat food?
“Oh yes. His food isn’t as good as yours though.”
“What does he eat?”
“He eats bird seeds.”
“How does he eat it?”
Her mom came over to her with a mischievous smile. “You want to know how he eats? Like this!” And she would grab Felicity, and peck her with her lips all over her face.
Felicity giggled wildly and would beg her mother to stop. “Ok mommy! Ok!”
“Do you understand how he eats now?”
Still giggling, she said “Yes mommy, I get it!”
“Ok then. Now, eat your food.”
A lone tear fell from her eyes. She missed her mommy and wondered why she went away.
‘If mommy was here, I wouldn’t be hungry. Maybe I should have just eaten my food.’ she thought, blaming herself. ‘If I would have eaten my food, mommy wouldn’t have went away.’
As she sniffled, he came in. “Are you crying in there?” he asked as he yanked the door open.
Felicity quickly wiped her face with the back of her hand and shook her head ‘no.’
“Good girl. Are you ready to come out of the closet now?”
She nodded her head at him.
“Good. Next time, when we play ‘lick the lollipop,’ you will play it right, right?”
Again, she nodded her head.
“Good girl. Come out and get ready for school.”
Without looking into her foster dad’s eyes, she crawled out of the closet and ran into her room, closing the door behind her. She slumped down to the floor, crying silently and wanting her mommy.