Patience. Patience is what it takes for me to calm down and allow Valerie and Barbara to do their job, which is to pry me from my home to meet up about this drug ordeal.
But my mother isn’t having it. Patience is wearing real thin.
“If you ladies would’ve seen what I saw last night, you wouldn’t be so fast to let your son out of the house either. It’s just too soon!”
“Mrs. Mitchell,” Valerie is losing patience too, but masks it well with a saccharine tone and desperate eyes. “we are some of Ronald’s closest friends, and our main priority is to watch out for one another.”
“When we all got word of the bad news, we immediately thought of the recovery program at our school that meets on Friday nights. We feel it would be beneficial for Ron,” Barbara says, looking over my mom’s shoulder in the doorway to lock eye contact with me.
This group study excuse is getting played out. It’s only a matter of time until my mom’s common sense kicks in.
But from the slouch in her shoulders and the way her hand is gently resting against the doorframe, she may just give in. If she doesn’t, then the gang will just have to go on without me, and that’ll definitely label me as liability, if it hasn’t already.
I cut in to try and add a little icing on the cake. Valerie and Barbara have already done enough pleading between the both of them.
“Mom, please let me do this. This is my first step to recovery and we both know how bad I need this.”
Our eyes are locked on to one another’s, deep blues pouring out two completely different things.
I really do like the sound of recovery. In fact, among all things, that’s what I should be trying to do the most. Recover from all my deep-rooted problems and heal from dirty, emotional damage. But I never seem to have enough time or the ability to actually get it done. I’m always digging myself deeper into the black hole that already has me suffocated in a dark realm. When will I ever get out? I can never be too sure.
Mother looks at me with a newfound awareness. I am not the passive, punching bag Ron she thought she could emotionally fuck over for years at a time. She is looking at me and seeing something different now, something more real and malignant that she could ever imagine.
I believe she knows she has no choice at this point. The destiny I have chosen for myself is due to her and dad’s broken parenting filled with empty smiles and apathetic hearts. They love me, but they do not love who I am. And for that, they have lost all rights to control me and what I decide to do from here on out, even though my future is far from bright and most likely hinting towards a downward spiral.
But whose fault is that?
Tears the size of raindroplets pour down my sweet mother’s face. I redden, feeling so guilty and torn at the same time. She is my mother, and the love I have for her will always be a native feeling found in the commonplace of my heart. I hate that it has come down to constantly disappointing each other.
Barbara can see it too. I catch her eye and make her smile pitifully. Valerie, on the other hand, just looks murderous and envious of something all the time. I can tell they both are ready to go though.
I kiss my mother on the cheek and tell her this is for the best. That I’ll be back before midnight and that my study group friends will notify her if anything happens.
“Fine,” she sighs, crossing her arms over her chest.
I look to Valerie and Barbara and widen my eyes, expressing how worn I am. Before the night engulfs me whole, I hear a small voice from behind me say, “I love you Ronald. Please be careful out there.”
Emily waves with her small hands and this almost makes me fall to my knees. I blow her a kiss with my hand and turn to walk down the street with the girls.
Emily knows a lot more than what she lets be known. She makes me more suspecious with each passing day.
Be careful out there.
Do I even have the audacity to be upset? It’s Emily. At least somebody in that house knows what I’m really doing.