Selma’s Story Time – 8/12/14

After Ellen left, Mrs. Stockton felt they just scratched the surface of getting an e-mail sent to Jerry Givings. She was hoping that she was going to have it done before Ellen left. Why did this have to turn into a project? Well, she thought, if it was going to help her feel better about things, it might be worth the time and effort to do it now.

A cup of tea and a pad of paper would be needed, so she started making tea and found a notebook and pen. Ellen said to start jotting down ideas, doing it how and where she was the most comfortable. She looked out the kitchen window and saw Oxford out in the Tinker’s backyard. Maybe the porch would be a good place. With her tea in hand, she walked out there and settled in on the couch. After sliding her feet under her, she picked up the notebook and pen and started writing.

Dear Jerry Givings,

I am the mother of the police officer you killed. I needed to write to you with a few questions I have.

Then she started to get mad at Walter again. Why wouldn’t he let her talk to him? With one shot, he had taken her son away from her. Didn’t she deserve a chance to yell at him? She wondered where she would be now if she had dealt with this back then. The question that she really wanted to ask was if he was sorry for what he did. He has had to face it every day in prison since it happened just like she has in her own home. She decided to try writing again.

Dear Jerry Givings,

I am the mother of the police officer you killed. I have been wondering, are you sorry for killing my son? I would have asked you at the time, but my family didn’t want the answer. Or knew what the answer was and didn’t tell me. I would like to forgive you for what you have done so I can move on, but I don’t think I can. What you did was too much to be forgiven for. I have to forgive my husband for not letting me tell you how I felt before you went to prison. I think that is information you really needed to have then. Maybe you could be sorry now, if you aren’t already.

Mrs. Stockton stopped writing. That was the real issue. She would have liked to call him names and tell him that what he did was terrible, and he needed to make it all better. She just realized that he wouldn’t have been able to make it better. He couldn’t bring Marty back. That’s what she needed to accept so she could move on.

She decided to call Ellen and let her know what she came up with. Ellen answered the phone on the second ring.

“Am I interrupting anything?” Mrs. Stockton asked. “No, I was making some notes for a session I have tomorrow. How are you doing?” “I have come across some ideas of why I am so upset.” “What are they?” “I wanted to yell and scream at him to make him sorry for what he did and have him fix it. He wouldn’t have been able to that.”

“No, he wouldn’t have been able to bring Marty back.”

“I think in my own head, I needed to know I at least tried to get him back and I needed to tell Jerry how much it hurt me. Once I wrote it down on paper it started to make sense to me.” “When it’s our own problem, it is always a bigger deal in our head than it may be on paper or outside ourselves. That’s why talking to other people helps sort things out and put them in a different perspective.” “So, if I would have talked to someone sooner, I could have known this a while ago and not gone through all of this pain.” “We don’t know that for sure. Some of the healing process takes time. And, you may not have been ready to start healing then. Your process might have had to take longer.” “So, what do we do now?” “Do you feel the need to send him an e-mail? Or do you think you can accept that and move on, once you forgive Walter for not letting you cope the way you needed to?” “I can accept that he thought he was doing what was right for him but was a little shortsighted when it came to how I felt. I don’t think I need the answer from Jerry now as much as I am curious if he would give me one. Maybe he’s sorry after all of this time.” “So, are you going to ask him?”

“I’ll have to think about it and let you know.”