On My Way To School

Every month on the second Thursday at 5:30pm, TKF hosts a Hour of Hope event. The Hour of Hope gives the attendees insight into the work of TKF, the problems of youth violence and how TKF is going to “Stop Kids From Killing Kids.” Near the end of the hour, this was read. I was deeply touched. After you read it, tell me what you think.


“On My Way To School”
By Mayra Nunez of TKF and her Circle of Peace students

Yesterday, I got home late at about 11:00 at night, after I was at my homeboy’s house because I did not want to hear my father’s yelling and my mother’s cry. Empty beer bottles, smell of a drunk and cold food is the only thing I can find. I fall asleep to the sound of my stomach growling and the ache I feel all night. Today I wake up and my father is still asleep after a drinking night. I have to go to school so I start to walk. At the corner of the street I see a couple of the homeboys kicking back. I stop for a minute and say, “What’s up?” They ask me to kick in with them and drink some beer but I tell them I can’t ‘am already late for school. Taking a shortcut through an alley, I see a couple of people I don’t recognize. I get a sick feeling in my stomach as if I want to throw up, but I continue to walk, when soon I am surrounded by three of them and am getting pushed around. “Where are you going homes?” “Where are you from?” I stay quiet and try to stay strong. They disrespect me, call me names but I continue to walk. I begin to see the sun out and bright and try to hurry up. As I am hurrying I start to run. Out of the corner of my eye I see a police car make a u-turn and I slow down. Now he’s asking me questions and patting me down. He takes a look at me and sees a shaved head, baggy pants, and breathing hard. Questions continue to be asked, “Where you going?”, “Where you from?” I hear the questions and close my eyes. Déjà vu comes to mind. I start to walk, a block away from school, I can make it in time I think. Now ‘am across the street and I hear the bell ring, what luck. My legs feel like they’re floating and I can’t walk fast enough. I get to the office to get a pass, the woman is on the phone; two minutes have gone by, now she realizes I need a pass. Am in school and its ok, walking down the hallway, I hear someone ask, “Where you going?”, “Where you coming from?” I close my eyes but I don’t get that déjà vu feeling no more, I just feel my blood boiling hot and rushing through my whole body. I get yelled at and more questions are asked. I try to calm down after the interrogation is over and I just want to get into class. I try to feel calm and relax before I walk into class. I take a few deep breaths and it seems to work. I go in and as I sit down I hear, “Where are you coming from?”, “You are late again.” This time I don’t need to close my eyes I realize it’s not déjà vu, and I snap.

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