Batten Short Story By Christine Swiderski



Even as a child I have felt as though I am behind bars. Battened behind a door. My fists of rage hammer on the door trying to get out. Only to find myself curled in the fetal position as my nightmare continues. My family loves me. I know they do. None has a clue that I struggle with this sense I am being lied to. Now that I am in college taking psychic classes. What I have read says I am paranoid. Maybe even delusional. My dreams seem real. Throughout the day my mind drifts back to what I have dreamt. My gut says it is real. A memory that has not been repressed. Recently I talked to my psychic professor. She suggested I do an ancestral search. I went to county records I wanted a copy of my original birth certificate. They had none available. They suggested I go to where I was baptized ask the church. I went to the church we have gone to for as long as I can remember, the pastor was not available his secretary did a search on her computer found that my Birth Certificate was not an original but a copy. On the certificate it said I was born at St James hospital. I spoke to someone in records who then suggested I come down in person show my ID. I went. Still no answers.


My boyfriend went into criminology I have never shared with him my delusions. He took some saliva and blood samples said he wanted to run my DNA he asked me for samples from both my parents. The tests came back. I am not biologically related to my parents. My boyfriend said “So they did not tell you that you are adopted that is not a crime.”

I said “How can I find out what hospital I was born at or who my parents are.”

He said he put my DNA into a data base and ran it for a match to anyone else in the system. One hit. A male 35 years old, 25 years ago committed suicide. The reason the DNA was taken, they were not sure if it was suicide the wife suspected the marriage was rocky.


I went to visit Helen Decomos. I will never forget the look on her face when she opened the door and the sound when she screamed. Once she calmed she told me when I was born they said I died at birth. Later she found out someone took me. The hospital covered it up because of liability. Her husband my father Paul deliberately ran his truck off the road. He could not take the pain. He was pried out of the truck. They said it was like prying the bars off a jail cell.

I said a silent prayer for both myself and my dad “I am here dad, with mom rest in peace.”