Ostensibly, Gig was supposed to use a paint can stir stick for spankings. But in the heat of her anger, she would grab whatever weapon first came to hand, and we were often beaten with kitchen implements. There is a picture of me as a young girl in footie pajamas standing with a man we knew from a church home group and he is holding a wooden spoon. I don't recall the exact evening the photo was taken, but I remember even as a child looking at the picture and wondering if the spoon had been used as an implement of discipline before or after the picture was shot. There was a day when I was about six or seven, before I'd started school outside the home, when Gig had grabbed a metal ladle to punish me with. I don't remember my infraction, but I remember her fury. She leaned me over the blue gingham checked couch in the den and raised the ladle up over her head. The blows rained down and I was screaming. On the third or fourth strike, she misjudged her aim (or possibly I flinched) and she brought the ladle down - HARD - on the edge of the couch. It bent back completely and I screamed even louder than before, out of fright. I turned and looked up into her eyes, and the skin around them had gone white. She looked at the ladle, then at me, and spoke in a tight, quiet voice. "Go outside." I cried my way right out to the backyard, but once the sliding glass door was closed, I started laughing. She thought she'd broken the spoon on me! I'd gotten off easy and made her scared of her own anger and violence in the process. Maybe the next time she'd be too scared to beat me hard.
It was possibly my first victory over her.
... remembering this stuff, so I can write it down, is hard. Not the remember, but the actually thinking about it.