"Chaddock is my safe place."
When the people who should have loved him the most actually hurt him the worst, Billy lashed out at the world.
When I first saw Billy, he was 11 years old and 'on run', meaning he was not where he was supposed to be. Truth be told, Billy was cutting school. He'd gotten up in the middle of class and just walked out. No one tried to stop him. Billy was a tough kid, and when he'd first come to Chaddock he'd had trouble controlling himself and his emotions. He'd done some damage.
I learned later that, before he came to Chaddock, when he wasn't being slapped and kicked around at home, Billy was kept locked in a dark closet for hours at a time by his biological parents. Though he wasn't in that situation anymore, there were still times when Billy's little world just crashed in on him, and Billy had to run.
He took a walk around Chaddock's 30-acre campus, feeling the sun on his face, the breeze on his skin. Two staff members kept him in sight from a distance, but they weren't too worried about him 'escaping'. After a few minutes, he gathered himself and walked back to class. He used the tools the staff had shown him to calm himself, to breath, and to accept his anger and to let it go.
For the first time in his life, Billy was in a place where he knew he was safe, secure, and loved...and the last thing on Billy's mind that day was running away.
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