It wakes me up at night. It startles me awake and demands me to release what it can’t hold anymore. Over-loaded. My brain runs twenty four seven; even when I’m asleep I’m pondering on something. It was times like these that they’d scream at me; yelling at me to wake. So what do I do? I do the only thing I’m capable of doing at 2 am. Writing.
I’ve considered myself a writer for awhile, maybe for ten years or so. I’ve always written letters, even when I was four and couldn’t spell correctly. It wasn’t long ago that I had found a small box full of letters to my parents. I knew I wasn’t that old as my favorite word was ‘very’ and I used it /very/ much. These letters were probably never read; did I blame them? Of course not, most of them were just jumbled letters and words that didn’t make sense but deep down, I knew they were ignored. I grew up differently than most, depending on myself for almost everything. Learning to climb up things had been something that came naturally. I had to clean my own clothing, bath myself and feed myself. The things that parents were suppose to teach; was something I had to teach myself.
I’m not the type of person that’s going to sit here and blame my parents for their addictions and choices. I make them take responsibility for their actions but I understood what addiction was. It wasn’t something that was easy to escape or walk away from. It always dragged you back down with it, it gave you no chance of improving yourself. There was no room for anything else when you welcomed addiction into your life. There was no room for family, for improvement, for love or responsibility.
There were days I thought the life I lived was normal. There were days when I thought everyone lived the same life I did but school changed that. When I came to school in dirty clothes and greasy hair while the other kids didn’t or when kids would talk about their parents and how loving they were; it hit me. Where were my parents? Meetings, parents going to events; mine were always absent.
That changed everything for me.
That was also the year that I met Rose.
She lived a good life, she was completely on the different side of me. It was almost like one of us was in Europe while one of us in the US. It was always night for me while it was always sunny for her. But she began to share that light with me and that has made all the difference. I can see why they always said, ‘opposites attract’ - there’s something about being around someone that lives a totally different life than you. It almost felt; exotic.
//KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK//
The loud pounding had filled my ears rather quickly. My sleepy body shuffling upward as I made my way off the couch and to the front door. I didn’t expect to fall asleep on the couch just as much as I hadn’t expected to be woken up by loud knocking. I let out a sigh as my black hair was twisted and ruffled around my head. My hand going forward as I unlocked the deadbolt and the bottom lock, opening the door as it was pushed open.
“WHERE’S YOUR MOTHER!?” My father yelled as he bustled through the house. My father reeked of alcohol. Of course for me, this wasn’t unexpected or something that had never happened before. My father had driven the car; drunk - but my mother wasn’t with him. “She’s suppose to be home!” He yelled, the sound of items slamming and breaking came from the back room. I stood at the door with a confused expression washed upon my sleepy features.
That night, my parents had went out to the bar. Leaving together in the same vehicle and only one returning in it. This kick started my worry for my mother. Where was she? Was she still at the bar? Did someone pick her up? The amount of questions that flooded into my head were non-stop.
I let out another sigh as I went to shut the door, my mother pushing me aside as she hustled into the backroom. I quickly shut the front door and ran after them. What was going to happen next? I knew by instinct there would be yelling and my father would get violent. There were times that if I wasn’t around; I don’t think my mother would be around. As I turned the corner, I was quick to take action, grabbing my father by his shoulder and pulling him off my mother. The scene of him repeatedly punching my mother in the face.
“GET OFF HER!”
I pushed my father off my mother and against a wall. My mother getting up as blood rushed down her face from her nose.
“Get out of here mom!”
“NO!” She yelled.
The truth was; no matter how many times my father hit her or abused her; she’d never leave him. There was only one way that she would leave my father; in a coffin. That was the sad and horrific truth. Addiction didn’t just come in one form, but many.
“Don’t you tell me what to do!” My father yelled as he pushed me back, I felt my body hit my mother as she tumbled to the ground, my father’s fists turning on me as he punched me in the face, the both of us hitting the ground; the both of us hitting one another. Blood.
Blood is a funny thing. Try ; just stop and think about how many people you share blood with. You’ve got your mother and your father. Of course, we all have one of each. But some of us have siblings. And even then, we have any more that we share our blood with. We don’t get to make choices on this but; what does it really matter when we’re doing nothing but spilling it anyway?
My father hated when people told him ‘no’ or ‘not to do’ something. He was stubborn and a grade A asshole. He was going to live that way forever. My father got up from underneath me as my mother rushed out of the room, I let out a grunt as I lifted myself up and followed. My face stung letting me know that my skin had been broken. I wasn’t the only one with facial wounds. I turned the corner and into the living-room, my mother sat on the couch as my father went and hovered over her.
“You ain’t going to tell anyone about this or I’ll kill ya!” My father yelled. His words were never kind when he was in this way. It pissed me off, the way that he was so easily able to control my mother by simple and empty threats. Was my father going to kill her? Eventually. There was no stopping him when he was drunk.
“Dad, get off her, why don’t you just go and cool off for awhile?” I said, my voice wasn’t angry but calm. My breath was rushed due to the fighting that had just occurred in the backroom. I moved myself from the hallway to the door. My father getting up as he looked at me, his eyes were empty and I knew that he wasn’t in there anymore.
“Dad, just go.” I said, but that wasn’t what he wanted to do. He pushed me, my body slamming into the door, my ribs snapping against the doorknob. I let out a groan, feeling my bones crack wasn’t pleasant. I wanted to collapse but he grabbed me by my hair, looked me straight in my face and slammed my head into the door ; not once but multiple times. The world was there before me and then it wasn’t.