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The Beginning


“Keemie, I need you to do something for me.”

His small, dark eyes peered deeply into his mother’s unusually soft countenance as she kneeled down. She grabbed his small hands and held it softly, causing his seven-year-old brain to become alert.

“What Mama?” he asked with his head angled.

Lashonda licked her red lips. “When we go in this office, I need you to act bad.”

His thick brows rumpled immediately. “Act bad?”

“Yes,” Lashonda confirmed with a swift head nod. “Act how you act at home. Jump on shit, throw some shitaround, and yell out anything you want.”

Keemie’s lips spread across his face, showcasing agrin with missing front teeth. “Can I cuss?”

“Yes, you can. Say all kinds of shit so we can get this money, okay?”

He jumped up and down, his body riddling with excitement at the thought of being able to act an ass freely. Keemie had no idea why his mother wanted him to display his signature unpleasant conduct, but he was ready to show his naughty side.

“Okay Mama.”

Lashonda smiled, standing up straight. She grabbed his hand and led him into the doctor’s office. They stepped up to the receptionist desk and checked in. Once the information was confirmed, Lashonda and Keemie took a seat in the waiting area.

She leaned in closer to him. “Remember what I said, Keemie. Act bad as fuck. If you do good, me and you are going to get some money.”

He sat on his knees, turning toward her. “Can I buy a Power Ranger with my money?”

“You sure can as long as you do what I say.”

Keemie bounced in his seat until a Caucasian lady emerged from the back.

“Nakeem Phifer.”

Lashonda and Keemie hopped from their seats and followed the woman in the back.

“We’re going to stop here and get his weight,” the nurse stated, stepping toward the scale.

“Hell no!” Keemie screamed, ready to act a fool.

Lashonda gave him a quick smile before she turned to the nurse. “Can we please skip this part? He’s already riled up, and I don't wanna disturb the other people in here.”

The woman quickly nodded. “That’s fine. I’ll take him straight to the doctor now.”

Keemie jumped and rolled on the ground as the nurse escorted him and Lashonda toward the office. He was thoroughly enjoying his free reign to be the rambunctious kid he usually was without having to hear his mother threaten to beat his ass fifty times a day. The nurse opened the door and Lashonda and Keemie entered. He observed the short Asian man closely, taking in his white coat and thick-wired glasses. Lashonda discreetly glanced at Keemie and gave him a curt nod. Right away, he knew that was his cue to turn his behavior up a notch and that’s exactly what he did.

“Arrrggghhhh!” he yelled, jumping up and down.

The doctor was startled before he planted a fake smile on his face. “Is this Nakeem?”

Lashonda nodded. “Yes, Dr. Chandy. This is him and as you can see, he’s a handful. May I?” she asked, wanting to take a seat in the chair in front of his desk.

“Sure,” he offered with his hand extended to the seat.

Lashonda sat down and Keemie ran over to the window and climbed on the sill.

“Oh Nakeem, I don't think it’s safe for you to be up there,” Dr. Chandy advised.

Instead of Keemie getting down like a normal child, he decided to ball his fist and bang on the glass.

“You see Doctor, he doesn’t listen. I have to tell him to do things at least ten times before he’ll listen to me,” Lashonda explained in a tone laced in pity.

“I want some candy!” Keemie requested, jumping off the sill.

“Keemie no. It’s too early for candy,” Lashonda scolded him.

He stepped over toward Dr. Chandy and attempted to reach into his pocket.

“Oh no, Nakeem, I don't have any candy for you,” the Asian man laughed.

“Fuck that! I want some damn candy!” Keemie yelled.

Dr. Chandy kneeled down so that he could be eye level with Keemie. “How about you settle down next to your mom so that we can talk?”

Keemie stared at him deeply before he laughed. “Fuck you, Doctor.”

“Nakeem,” Lashonda chided. “Don't be doing all that damn cussing in here. People gon’ think I'm unfit.”

Dr. Chandy waved his hand. “It’s okay. Uh, I receivedhis academic records from school and I also had some conversations with his teacher. While his behavior isn’t the best, his test scores are through the roof. He’s testing on a fourth grade math level, and a fifth grade reading level.Were you aware of that?”

Lashonda shook her head. “I understand that but his behavior overshadows all of that. He gets kicked out daily from his class and he’s disruptive to the other students. I've been to over five doctors and they act like ain't shit─my bad, nothing wrong with him. I feel like some more counseling would be good for him, but I don't have that kind of money. That’s why I need you to approve him for the social security benefits. I think he has that ADD shit─I mean stuff.”

Keemie ran over to the desk and knocked all the pens out of the cup. He then grabbed Lashonda’s purse that was on the floor and began rummaging through it.

“Put it down,” she ordered.

Keemie insisted on finding a piece of candy so he ignored her request and continued to search through her bag.

Lashonda grabbed the strap and snatched the purse away from him. “What the hell did I say? Stop being so hardheaded, Nakeem.”

Keemie smacked his lips. “Shut up, Mama.”

Dr. Chandy stood from his kneeling position. “Okay, I'm going to order more testing, but in the meantime, I’m going to fill out the paperwork for the Social Security benefits for you. Keep in mind that they may deny him.”

Lashonda bounced in her seat but quickly stopped. “Thank you, Doctor. This would be a big help for not only Keemie but my family as well.”

Dr. Chandy wrote something down on a mall notepad, tore off the sheet and handed it to Lashonda.

“This here is a prescription for Ritalin. It’s a stimulant that’ll calm Nakeem down a bit. Also, please leave theSocial Security Benefits paperwork with my nurse and schedule Nakeem a follow-up visit with me for the end of the month.”

Since Lashonda seemed like she was receiving the good news she was hoping for, Keemie climbed on top of the desk and jumped into her lap.

“Keemie,” she gritted through clenched teeth. “This ain't no damn playground.”

“My bad damn,” he huffed as she snatched his arm.

Lashonda quickly made her exit out the office,practically dragging Keemie behind her. She stopped at the front desk to drop the paperwork off, and then hurried out of the suite. When she got in the hallway, Lashonda clapped her hands as a cackle escaped her mouth.

“We did it Keemie!” she celebrated in her boomingvoice. “Yo’ ass was actin’ so damn good. Just make sure you turn that shit off ‘cause now I can whoop your ass.”

He looked up at her as her gold fangs shined brightly. “We gon’ get some money, Mama?”

“Hell yeah,” she confirmed as they walked toward the elevator. “We got another check coming in and I'm ‘bout to be ballin’, you hear me?”

“I can still get my Power Ranger?” he asked in an innocent voice.

“Yes, but Keemie,” she licked her lips. “Just don't tell your daddy about this. This is between me and you, okay?”

He nodded. “Okay.”

“Good, now let’s go to Juicy’s so we can get you a pizza puff and some cheese fries.”

Keemie jumped up and down with glee with hopes of tasting his favorite meal from his favorite restaurant.

Coming this month ‼️

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