On the school run I usually take a sneaky short cut down a small quiet residential road. I have to drive as we live too far away to walk which irritates me no end. I really wish I was within walking distance… I have little fantasies about walking to and from school with my darling little kiddies holding my hands or skipping along next to me….
Anyway, going way off track there, recently I was driving down this road (because I do the nursery runs too, I go back and forth along this road three times per day – twice each way – so six times if we are being exact!) and I noticed a couple of police cars outside a particular house. I didn’t take much notice the first day, but by the third day of seeing police standing outside the house and police vans/cars everywhere, I started to become very suspicious.
Then there were the flowers. Flowers laid on the grass on the front lawn. Lots of them. I felt uneasy.. something bad has happened I thought. Someone must have died. It suddenly made me feel shocked and sad, I don’t know why really because, obviously, people die every day but with it being on my doorstep it just felt a little more real I guess. The curtains had been drawn too in all the windows, something which I hadn’t noticed previously.
On the fourth morning (I think) I had popped into a friends house for a coffee and I mentioned it to her as it was bothering me. She knew what had happened, it had been on the local news I think.
A little girl, aged 11, had been killed in the house and her Dad had been arrested, although not charged as yet.
I felt sick. Oh my god! It was the worst thing I could ever have imagined. The house is just round the corner from me and this poor little girl went to a school nearby, not ours, but a local one. How awful.. I couldn’t believe it. I couldn’t believe I didn’t know either, but it’s no surprise as I rarely buy the local paper and our TV’s at home are either off or have kids programmes on and I’d had a busy few days so hadn’t really seen anyone.
I couldn’t stop thinking about it. That poor, poor girl. I stopped and asked one of the policemen on my way home and he said he couldn’t discuss it but it was on the BBC news online and suggested I take a look, which I did. Apparently the girl was an only child and she had been strangled by her Dad who had allegedly fled the scene and crashed his car, in an apparent attempted suicide.
How could someone do that to a child? If it was her dad, what sent him over the edge to actually physically put his hands around her neck and squeeze the life out of her? Obviously something wrong with him, no doubt about it, but still….. and to think this happened just round the corner from us. Shocking! What about their immediate neighbours? How absolutely terrible for them, they must’ve known the little girl or seen her around. This must be having a disturbing affect on them. It was disturbing me no end! I had all these thoughts rattling around in my brain.
Driving past the house I can’t help but think about it. How life can be taken just like that. There one minute and gone forever the next. How life just ticks on for everyone else. I see people coming in and out of their houses on that road and whether it has impacted on them or not, they still have to get on with their lives, as we all do. It almost seems unfair. I remember when I lost my mum and the first time I went out afterwards, I took my daughter to the park and all I remember is looking around at people who were having fun… I almost hated them because they weren’t going through what I was going through. I felt like it was ok for them, they still had their mum I bet, how lucky they were, but what about me?! The emptiness and loss I felt at that time was the worst pain I’ve ever experienced.
Life does go on though. It’s been a while now since that little girl was murdered. The police are no longer present at the address and the flowers have all been taken away.
I keep thinking about the little girls mother. Her life is over. There can be no loss in the world greater than the loss of your child, and this was her only child. She’s also lost her husband too… a double blow, and in such disturbing, shocking circumstances. The Dad was charged by the way. We don’t know any more of the details and I’m curious as to what happened in the lead up to the incident… what on earth made him do that? They were a family that kept themselves to themselves that’s all we are told in reports but I’m sure all will come out in the trial.
It’s a very very sad story.
I will try to report back on this when the trial has taken place.