If you missed the last post, you can catch up here.
It’s been a while, so here’s a photo to remind you who we’re talking about.
Left to right: Lisa, Stan, Shane, Jon, Ray (Alison’s husband), Alison (their biological daughter), Laurel, some rando in gray, and our dog, Jake.
Ok, so God told these people to take us in, but reading this interview with them, it’s so apparent they are batshit crazy, and were very likely making up any “higher calling”. We didn’t interact with society enough for people to be racist toward any one of us – homeboy wasn’t accepted in society because we were weirdos who were homeschooled, sewed our own clothes, and walked around in public with our hands in our mom’s back pocket, literally.
(Some of the foster kids referenced in their interview.)
Sick of being an outcast in public and human garbage at home, Shane had enough of this life and one night, he ran away for real. He walked all the way to Lane, the town where we used to go to Sunday School, and sat for a while on the bench outside, muddy, tired, and at the end of his rope. Our old Sunday School teacher, Mrs. Waylan, recognized Shane and knew instantly what brought him here. She sat for a while and talked with him about all that had been going on behind closed doors – he lifted his shirt and showed her his scabs and bruises, but as much as it hurt, Mrs. Waylan knew that at least for today, she had to take Shane back to his living nightmare. Broken and betrayed, Shane returned to us and the Statton’s couldn’t shoo Mrs. Waylan off the front porch fast enough. I don’t remember what his punishment was for running away, but I’m sure it wasn’t a slap on the wrist. Time went past and we all just kind of accepted that this was our life now. There was no way out. Most people didn’t know what happened in our house, and those who did were either powerless to stop it or were too indifferent to try.
(I found one of Shane’s summer report cards! #soofficial)
Shane and I must have let our grades slip again because we found ourselves on the humiliating end of another one of Lisa’s punishments. She declared that if were to act like stupid babies, we could expect to be treated like them. Shane and I weren’t allowed to speak and were forced to repeat “goo goo ga ga” any time she walked into the room. We were made to sit in the corner of a room all by ourselves, playing with a wooden spoon and a laundry basket, much like an infant would. At random intervals, she would come and make us sing The Itsy Bitsy Spider in baby voices and use our hands to match our words. She even went so far as to bathe us in the evenings, vigorously scrubbing our most private recesses until we hated ourselves as much as she hated us. I remember sitting in my corner one evening, spitting on the wall and watching it slide down into the gap behind the trim, hoping against all reason that enough would gather and rot the house from the inside, and we would all be killed in the collapse. I also had this suspicion that someday she might just kill us and hide our bodies, and no one would find out for years, so I would tuck clumps of my hair into the furniture, on the edges of the stairs, in the back of unused kitchen drawers, just in case a forensics team came in, so they could find a trace of evidence to prove I existed. Children sure have wild imaginations….*nervous laugh*.
One day we were slinking around the grocery store with Lisa, when who do we see, but Mrs. Waylan! Her heart breaking for the adolescent shells of human beings she saw before her, Mrs. Waylan couldn’t help but to whisper in passing to Shane, “help is on the way!”
Maybe a week later, I was in the front yard and a car pulled in the driveway. Two detectives stepped out and approached me, asking if my mother was home. Curiously, I led them inside, but was dismissed for the conversation the three held behind the closed door of the study. I quickly lost interest and went about my business, but probably 20 minutes later, the detectives escorted our mother downstairs and she very annoyedly informed us that we were going to go on a trip and should pack some things. Confused, we exchanged glances, but did as we were told. Before we walked out the door, Lisa grabbed our hands and told us to kneel for a prayer. Again confused, we looked at each other like, “since when do we pray?!” Awkwardly enduring Lisa’s show for our guests, we fidgeted in our disproportionate prayer circle. When she finished, we got into the detectives’ car, closed our doors, and never looked back.
Still having no idea of what was going on, or that it was Mrs. Waylan who sent these angels our way, we were excited to have a few hours away from our parents. The nice officials took us to Culvers, ordered us ice cream, and drove us to a town an hour North called Pontiac. Yet again, we found ourselves wards of the State of Illinois and had no idea what the fuck that meant for us.