It was a boarding school in Zimbabwe.
It was the place that finally broke my anger.
It was a place that made me understand in the face absolute brokeness people can have no mercy.
It is a place that leaves me so silent, I cant ever imagine being able to explain.
That thick silence of unbelief swallows me now. So I plant this seed of voice in this the smallest blog.
Boarding school FoodWe had our food shared out by our dormitory prefect.To those who were favored much was given to those who were not our plates were not full.
Our parents were told we would be given snacks of two cups of milk a day and a piece of fruit and a sandwich in between meals. The reality was 1/4 of and inch of milk in the bottom of a mug twice a day, a quarter or sometimes half an orange, and a quarter or sometimes a half a jam sandwhich.
Being one of the unfavored a meal times ment I learnt like the other few to pick up the orange peels left on the ground and eat them. In school hours a major part of my thinking was taken up anticipating the humbling experience of begging food from the day scholars lunch boxes.
In the evenings I would hide in my bed and eat my toothpaste trying to create enough self control so as to leave enough for my teeth and not get found out.
I was once asked were you greedy or hungry, the honest reply is I was probably comforting myself and hungry.
Boarding school discipline.Ours was a progressive school in that it did not constantly beat its children. Instead we were put into stress positions that would put fire through our bodies. This would always be done infront of the class. I was never sure which was more awful watching or being watched.
Recently I saw army prisoners in some of the positions we were put in. I bravely looked it up and found that these methods are used pre interigation to break a persons spirit.
Boarding school ConclusionThere is a understanding in me of something very deep. Some sort of fatalistic acceptance of disempowerment. Of knowing that there will be no mercy, that ur body must/ has to just get through it.
Knowing that you will not get to leave, you will not get to run anywhere safe, that everyone you know has agreed this is the best place for you to be, and that you will be taken back. In that acceptance a part of you the hope part of you that believes anyone will rescue you or show compassion towards you dies and you just get on with it. you accept it.