Numb. That is all I feel is numb. It has been three days since her funeral and all I have done is lied in bed watching sad movies. The only time I have gotten up is to go to the bathroom. Even food has somehow just been appearing in my room, it is always left on the desk right by my door. A few times I have heard the door creak open, but I have no motivation to even look at who it is. I suspect it is one of my parents actually showing signs of caring for once. Aunt --- has dropped by a few times, but I know she is very busy with her work to constantly be here for me.
During the middle of my fourth time watching A Walk to Remember in the past three days, my door flew open with my mom standing in the door. “Enough of this moping around get showered, dressed and meet me and your father in the living room.” With that she turned and left the room. I just continued laying there hoping that she would forget and leave me alone. “Now!” Ugh knowing now she wasn’t going to let this go I decided to drag myself out of bed, ditching the crutches I tried to hobble into the bathroom.
Turning on the hot water I let the bathroom steam up before getting in. Letting the hot water wash away the three days of dirt since I showered last. It took me longer than usual considering I had to keep the cast dry. I was also stalling a little bit, I would rather do anything than have to go down there. I slowly got out and dried off, putting on sweatpants and a t-shirt. Pulling my hair into a messy bun, I headed down the stairs grabbing an apple from the kitchen before heading into the living room.
Both of my parents were sitting on the couch. My mom was typing away on her Ipad, and my dad was busy talking on his cellphone. I made my way to the chair that was opposite of where they were sitting. My mother looked up and turned her Ipad off and set it on the coffee table, this caught my father’s attention and he quickly ended his phone call promising he would call them back later.
“Me and your father were talking and we think it would be a good idea if you go see a therapist.” I knew this was going to happen eventually that was the only way they knew how to fix anything was to go to therapy and work out your problems there. I know therapy helps a lot of people, but I do not want to go sit in a room and tell my whole life story to a stranger.
“What if I don’t want to go to therapy?”
My mother answered actually looking sort of concerned. “We know you would not want to, but we really think that it would be best for you to have someone to talk to.” At this point I was trying hard not to roll my eyes, did it ever occur to either of them I should be able to talk to them, my parents, about my problems. My mother realized I was no longer listening to her rant about therapy and its benefits, she huffed looking at my father for back up. Now I knew I was in trouble.
“We have been very lenient even letting you take some time off school, you are going to go to therapy, because we told you too.” Once my father jumped in with his thoughts I knew I had no other choice in the matter, so I just sighed putting my head down knowing I was going to go whether I wanted to or not.
“Also we are having a few of our business associates over for dinner tonight.” I slowly looked up at my mother knowing where this was going. “I have a dress picked out for you, it is in your closet. I want you to be here and be on you best behavior, this is very important dinner for us.”
“Do I have to come, can I just stay in my room. I promise not to make a sound, please.” My father stood up and was now glaring down at me.
“I have had enough of you questioning everything we tell you to do. You will listen to your mother and show her respect. You are coming and you will be polite in front of our business associates.” With that he stormed out of the room already with his phone out making another call.
“Dear I know this is hard for you, well try therapy out if it is not working we will look into other options, and tonight just come for the cocktails and dinner and then you can call it a night.” There was one of the rare moments, where my mother actually showed that she cared for me. “Now go get ready, and do something with that rats nest on your head, everyone will be arriving by 5,” and she’s back.
With that I stood up and left the room. Heading to my bedroom I went into my closet looking for this dress she mentioned. It was hanging in the back in a garment bag. Unzipping it all I saw was red. It was a ball gown with sequences on the bust and then flowed to the floor with sparkles around the bottom. Well at least it will cover up my cast, so hopefully people forget and don’t ask me about it. Letting my hair out of the bun, I was not sure what I was going to do with it yet. Deciding to just do loose wavy curls, I turned on the radio and set off to find my curling iron. After plugging it in, I set to curling my hair. When I was done I looked at the clock and it was already 4:30. I decided to put my dress on and then quick do my make up hoping I wouldn’t be late. Just as I was finishing my makeup a song I love came on, so I started dancing around in my dress, as best I could with my leg. As I was attempting a twirl on my good leg, I heard my door open this startled me and since I didn’t have full stability I ended up falling on my butt. I looked up seeing Bryce standing there now with his hands on his knees laughing. With a huff I tried pushing myself up, but with the dress being so poofy and my cast I could not get up.
Crossing my arms I glared at him, “Are you going to come help me up, or continue to laugh at me all night.” With that he sobered up walking over toward me and sticking out his hand to help me up. Good thing he is strong, I was no help while he tried to pull me up. Once I was standing again, I brushed my dress off inspecting it making sure I did not rip anything. Looking back up at him he was still smiling with a little bit of tears in his eyes from laughing so hard. I just stood there and glared at him.
“Come on, you have to admit that was a little funny, but seriously how is your leg?” Once I confirmed that it was okay he must have rethought the event, as he let out another laugh. Since he was still laughing at me, I pushed him. He was not expecting it so he lost his balance causing him to fall on the floor. His face was that of pure shock. It was then my turn to laugh at him, his reaction was priceless. Finally catching my breath I looked up and he was standing again smiling at me. I just realized I haven’t laughed this hard or really at all for a long time, it felt nice.
“That was a bit hypocritical of you, you yelled at me for laughing when you fell and you purposefully make me fall and then laugh at me.” I knew he was still joking though as he was saying this all with a big smile on his face. Instead of replying I just stuck my tongue out at him, and turned around heading into my closet to look for shoes. I heard him chuckle behind me and yell “real mature.” Looking around for what to wear I saw a new shoe box sitting on the floor, opening it I saw a pair of silver stilettos with at least a five inch heel. Throwing the box back on the floor rolling my eyes, my mother couldn’t even remember there is no way I could manage to wear those right now. Grabbing a silver flat for my good leg I put it on.
Walking back into my bedroom, Bryce was still there and he was sitting on my bed. Actually looking at him now I realized he was dressed in a suit. I should have figured his family would be attending this party. “By the way, what are you doing in my room?”
“Oh, your mom sent me up here to get you, she said that guests were arriving and you were to be downstairs…” with that he looked at his watch and then back up at me.. “actually five minutes ago.”
“Why didn’t you tell me now I’m late and my mother is going to be mad!” With that I hurried out of the room not realizing someone was standing there. I ended up colliding with them again and since I left my crutches in my room I ended up on my butt again. “You have got to be kidding me!” Looking up I see my worst enemy standing there glaring down at me.
“Uhh you are such a klutz, you could have ruined my dress.” Her voice was so irritating. She always sounded like she was whining.
“Sorry Valerie, I didn’t see you there.” She was in my house roaming the halls and yet I was apologizing to her. I was not brave enough to stand up to her.
Just then Bryce came out of my bedroom. He grabbed me under my arms and hoisted me up again. “I’m sure it was just an accident Valerie she did not mean to run into you.” With that he handed me my crutches and walked around me placing a kiss on her cheek.
“Oh I know honey, it is ok no harm no foul.”
That’s right my worst enemy is dating Bryce. Kat always tried to convince me that Bryce liked me she even once convinced me to confront him about it, that obviously that did not go as planned.
“Come on Isabella, I know for a fact he likes you and has for awhile. Just go up to him; grab him, say you like him to and kiss him.”
“I can’t Kate what if he doesn’t really like me and I just embarrass myself.”
“Go in there now or I will do it for you.” Not wanting to be embarrassed by her I left her room and walked down the hallway to where his room was. I stood outside of the door wandering if this was the right thing to do or not I tried to think back to every time I was with him and how he acted around me. He was always nice to me, he always ditched his friends to sit with us at lunch, but I just figured because Kate was there. They were always very close as siblings. Finally building up the courage I took a deep breath in and opened the door.
Sitting on his bed Valerie was straddling him and they were making out. I quickly slammed the door and ran down the hall, just as I was entering Kate’s room I saw his bedroom door open. I closed her door before he could see me and know it was me that barged into his room.
I explained to Kate what happened, and she stormed out of the room. She came back about ten minutes later, but she never told me what she did during that time. The rest of the night I never came out of her room. At night when Kate was in the shower I heard a knock on her door. Knowing that her parents weren’t home it had to be Bryce. I quickly laid down and pretended to be asleep. I heard the door creak open and heard him whisper my name. I just laid there not moving, I heard a sigh and then the door close. Taking my chances I peeked one eye open and he was no longer there.
I wasn’t really heartbroken because I knew I never stood a chance in the first place, I was more embarrassed. At first he still tried to talk to me all the time like nothing happened, but after me not answering or giving short answers he tried less and less. I even stopped sitting with them at lunch opting to eat in the library by myself. Kate eventually convinced me to return to the lunch room, but she promised Bryce would no longer be sitting with us. About two months after the incident him and Valerie officially got together. After that Bryce was never really around anymore to even try to talk to me. Lets just say Valerie hated me, why I have no clue as I have never even talked to her. She would always make fun of me, and got all her friends to chime in. Least to say she made my life at school horrible. She would never do that though in front of Bryce, if he was there she would act sweet and like my best friend. I was not sure if he actually knew the mean side to her or if he did not care and wouldn’t stand up for me like he used to when we were little kids.
“Well good I’m glad your both ok.” Then Valerie grabbed Bryce and started making out with him. Taking that as my cue to leave, I made my way downstairs. The downstairs was already filled with people. I know my mother spotted me as I was coming down the stairs and she was now making her way over to me.
“Honey, what took you so long to get down here I sent Bryce up almost fifteen minutes ago.” Her voice still sounded pleasant, but I knew she was just putting on an act for her guests, she was probably very mad that I was late.
Trying to think of how to explain all that happened and why I was late I heard a voice start talking from behind me. “Sorry that was my fault, I kept her upstairs talking.” I turned around to see Bryce standing there. I was kind of surprised to see him already downstairs as I figured he would be upstairs awhile considering the position he was in when I left.
“Oh that is quite alright dear.” Rolling my eyes at how nice my mom was acting, she always loved Bryce and if he was around he would always get me out of trouble by sweet talking my mom. With that my mom walked away to go great guests, leaving me and Bryce again. I need to figure out a way to stop being left alone with him.
“So how are you doing?” I looked over at him not sure why he was still standing here and not off finding his girlfriend.
“I’m fine, you can go to your girlfriend, I’ll be alright.” With that I started to turn to get away. I felt him grab my arm and turn be back around to face him.
“Stop Bell.” Looking a little taken back, he was using the childhood nickname he gave me, I haven’t heard that since he started dating valerie. “Look I am really worried about you, I know this has all been hard for you, but you can’t shut everyone out.”
“Everyone, I don’t have anyone now, Kate was my only friend and basically my only family.” Kate was always the more outgoing one. She had other friends that we would sometimes hang out with, but I knew they only talked to me because of Kate.
“Bell, I think you don’t realize how many people care about you, I have people asking me all the time how you are doing. Have you even checked your phone, your friends have tried texting and calling you, but they say you never answer or reply.” I haven’t looked at my phone since before the accident, it was probably somewhere in my room dead.
“What friends? Kate was the only friend I had everyone else was friends with her and I just tagged along.” I could tell I was making him mad now, but this was just how I felt what was I supposed to say ever since Kate died I was alone. This was the first time I ever let myself think that, trying to hold back the tears I tried to turn around to leave again. When he started speaking again I froze.
“I can’t believe that you are that stupid, you have so many people that care about you including me. If you keep living like this than yes maybe you will end up alone.” With that, I finally ripped my arm out of his hold and quickly made my way to our back door, I know everything he said was true, I just can’t believe he said it. I sat down on the swing on our back porch looking out at the pool that was in our backyard. I was now letting the tears flow. I know that I am not dealing with all of this well, but I didn’t know how else too. I never lost someone close to me I have both of my parents, my grandparents were gone before I was even born. I could never imagine the pain of losing someone until now, and it was the closest person to me. Kate knew everything about me. We were always there for each other especially having to deal with our crappy parents, that cared more about work than anything else.
I heard the back door open and I looked up to see who it was. I saw a girl I recognized from school, I believe her name was Bethany, making her way over to me. I think her dad was part of my dad’s company so it made sense she would be here. I quickly wiped my face not wanting her to know I have been out here crying.
“Hello, may I join you?”
“Yea, sure” I scooted over so she would have room to sit down. Neither of us said something at first, just both staring straight ahead.
“I just came out here for some fresh air, I didn’t know you were here.”
“It’s ok I don’t mind, I understand it gets a little stuffy in their.”
“If I have one more pervert come up to me and tell me how much I have grown, I am going to sucker punch one of them.” I laughed at that, I know how these parties can be a bunch of old men that have had a little too much to drink and start getting grabby, but you can’t do anything about it and risk your parents reputation. Obviously they never go too far just far enough to make you extremely uncomfortable.
“Please do, I am sure it would make this night a lot more interesting.” With that she let out a chuckle.
“Oh yea, I am sure my parents would love that.” She then mockingly placed a hand over her heart and looked shocked. “I could ruin my family’s reputation and then how will we ever survive.” With that we both broke out into laughter. Once we finally settled down, she looked over at me know looking serious. “How are you doing though?”
Sighing I decided to be honest with her. “I don’t know, I’m not sure how I am supposed to deal with all of this. I have so much guilt and grief it is unbearable.”
“I know this may not help much, but I know how you feel. My sister died three years ago and it was the hardest thing I ever had to go through. It took me a long time to realize, but after her death I pushed everyone away from me. That is one of the things I most regret, once you push everyone away for long enough it offends them, and is hard to win them back” I did know a little bit about her. A couple years back she was on the cheerleading team and pretty popular, then she was gone for a month or two. I never actually knew what happened there were a lot of rumors, most of them were spread by the cheer team that were her so called friends. After that she quit the team and would always keep to herself. Now knowing everything I felt so bad for her.
“Don’t look at me like that now, I do not need you feeling bad for me. I did it to myself, it is something I regret, but I have learned to live with it… I better get back in now, but just so you know if you need anything or just somebody to talk to I’d be more than happy too.” With that she gave me her phone number and then got up and went inside. Sitting here for a few moments, I let what she said sink in. I know I need to not push everyone away, but I have to make more friends first to have anyone to push away. With that I stood up to head inside, before my mother realized I wasn't at the party and freaked out.