I'm pretty sure that was her name. She was a gorgeous young girl, 13, maybe 14 years old, with long jet black hair. Her eyes were deep and brown against her olive skin. She looked older than her tender years and I knew that very soon she would be an exotic beauty. She left an anonymous question for me yesterday, after I finished my presentation in her 8th grade health class.
It went something like this:
"So my mom is being abused, and she will not leave, for all of the reasons that we discussed today. She will not listen to me, and I am scared. I don't know what to do."
Today, during Day Two of my presentation, I could tell the question came from her. Or at least I'm pretty sure it did. As I answered the question during our anonymous question and answer session today I noticed the flicker of remembrance cross her face. I saw as her body slumped slightly down into her desk chair. As I addressed her question, I watched as she slowly dropped her head into her hand, covering her eyes. A minute later, I caught her eyes as she peered over her hand. Her eyes looked lost, almost desperate, as though she needed saving. Even as I namelessly encouraged her to seek help, to talk to a trusted adult, to talk to her best friend, to have a safety plan for her and her mom, she never looked reassured. It will take me a long time to process Sophia.
Tell someone Sophia. Tell someone....