The word “hero” conjures up images of a burly soldier or stout first responder. We normally only give that title to those whose imposing physicality or professional acumen safeguard those who are weaker or needier.
Yet even the weak and needy can themselves be heroes. Just think about the bravery shown by one plucky British six-year-old.
The girl (who news agencies declined to name) is the daughter of 36-year-old Jodie Keegans from Doncaster, England. Her heroic act? Simply talking to an adult.
According to Metro, the girl walked up to her teacher in October 2017. What she said stunned the authority figure.
“Daddy’s hurting mummy,” the girl stated. “She says she loves him, but he keeps hurting her.”
The word “hurting” hardly expresses the torment that Jodie experienced. Be warned, Liftable readers: This one is tough to stomach.
The Daily Mail reported that Keegans met her husband, the now-34-year-old Scott Keegans, at a club in 2005. Their relationship wasn’t always a bad one.
“It started off really good,” Jodie said. “He was a great partner and father in the beginning, but about three years ago, his possessive behavior started to escalate.
“He didn’t want me to engage with anyone and would always question the kids, asking, ‘Who did mummy speak to today?’ He used to tell me I was lazy and tell the kids, ‘Mummy is useless.’”
His actions soon moved from emotional abuse to physical. He would bite her, punch her, and stomp on her.
Some of his attacks did serious damage. One bout of violence left her with a torn ear, and Scott wouldn’t let her go to the hospital.
Her daughter’s intervention changed all that. On December 23, 2017, police showed up at the family’s doorstep in the afternoon.
A frightened Scott fled the premises, and Jodie saw her opportunity. “As soon as I saw them, I knew this might be my only chance and I made sure all of the windows and doors were locked and that he was actually gone,” she said.
“Then I did something I’d never done before: showed the two police officers my injuries and simply said, ‘I think I’m a victim of domestic abuse.’ I guess that was the first time I had actually admitted what was happening to me and that I needed help.”
Jodie ended up spending the next five days in the hospital, and what the doctors found horrified them. She had a broken shoulder, nine fractured ribs, a half-dozen spinal fractures, and damage to her internal organs.
“It was the best Christmas I have ever had,” she said. She was also thankful for the bravery of her child.
“My daughter is my superhero for being brave enough to tell her school was was happening, which is when support services first became involved. She really did save my life.”
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