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What If?




8 February 2024


I often wonder what it would have felt like if I'd had my own Comfort Case.


  

I’m standing in front of strangers in the clothes I’d been taken in. An unclean school uniform with rips, that didn’t even fit. That’s all I had in that moment. The social worker and police had just taken me to the hospital; I’m bruised, I’m hurting, I’m afraid and sad beyond any words.

Everything was different. I was scared they would hurt me too. The foster carers wanted to wash my uniform. I was too afraid to get changed, let alone wear a stranger’s clothes. What would they have wanted in return? Would I not get them back?  I couldn’t talk to them. I continued to be mute with fear and sadness.

Most of my other belongings were needed for evidence. This made me feel angry because I didn’t understand why what was left came in a bin bag. I felt like the “tramp” so many people called me and not worth being looked after.

I often wonder what it would’ve felt like…if I’d had my own comfort case.

I imagine I wouldn’t have slept in my uniform if I’d had pyjamas that were mine.

The two photos and keyring that were my only childhood treasures, wouldn’t have been destroyed at the office, mistaken for rubbish. I recently found this out their fate and it hurts today as much as it did then. They could have been placed with love in a rucksack and stayed with me. I could’ve still had them today. 

I also wonder, with the love and care being given in a comfort case, with a lot of firsts like a toothbrush, would that have given me the courage to speak out quicker? Would having a teddy for the first time led to me finding words for what happened, because I’d had something to hold something to tell?

These things will never change for me which still breaks my heart. 

I will never get my treasures back. 

But it’s not too late for others in that situation now. 



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