I’ve been living with Nicole and Brad for 6 weeks now and I’ve finally started to find my feet. I no longer need to attend appointments with my physiotherapist, although I still have to do the exercises they prescribed me and keep building my strength. I’ve started to get a bit more independence, going out on my own and seeing Perth.
Although, I do spend a lot of time with Jordan when he’s not working. I would say that he’s become my best friend. He’s helped me tick a lot off my list that I made when I first got out of hospital. Only small things, like trying different foods and visiting places around Perth. I was hoping that something would spark some kind of memory, or even a feeling of familiarity in me, but so far nothing has. I’m as much in the dark now as I ever was.
Brad found me a support group to attend for those who have experienced brain trauma and memory loss, surprisingly, there were quite a few in attendance. And while I could relate in terms of being frustrated with having no memories, I couldn’t help but feel like my situation is different. Each one of them spoke about how they felt like their family was disappointed that they couldn’t remember certain things, or them all together, whereas I have no one putting that pressure on me, no one trying to remind me of things I can’t remember. I don’t know if that’s a blessing or a curse.
There is a part of me that wonders if I ever had someone who loved me. Surely, if I did, then someone would have come forward. Someone would have said something.
Jordan has been looking into my cold case, though he says there really isn’t much to go on. While I was told no one came forward to identify me, in fact, thousands of calls were made over the years, although everyone either turned out to be a hoax, a case of mistaken identity where they found the person they thought I actually was, or a complete dead end.
I’ve asked about the place I was found, I can’t help but feel that there has to be something out there. Though Jordan is quick to persuade me not to go out there just yet. He says it’s the middle of the desert and that I need to be fit and strong if we are going to be searching in the middle of nowhere, given the conditions. Eventually, I know I will go out there, I know I will need to, even if it’s just for some type of closure on the life I don’t remember.
Today I’m sitting on the couch in Nicole and Brad’s living room, watching Disney movies with Nicole, Lucy and the kids. Another thing on my list to tick off. Brad is somewhere in the house, having had to leave the vicinity, claiming that the songs were ‘doing his head in.’
In reality, Lucy was close to strangling him for his constant moaning about watching Disney movies. We have watched 3 so far, all of them capturing my imagination and wondering if one day I will get to meet my own prince charming.
Nicole has been restless beside me, her overgrown belly making her uncomfortable. She’s due to give birth any day now, I’ve found it quite interesting to watch her belly get lower and lower each day, as if affected by gravity. Apparently, that’s a sign that she is almost ready to go.
We are currently watching Sleeping Beauty, when the front door opens and an older couple walk through into the living room, the women, slightly larger with dark skin and stunning brown eyes rushes towards Nicole, or more so her belly, with a huge smile on her face.
“Oh! Look at that Belly, I can’t wait to meet you!” she exclaims as she grabs Nicole’s stomach and buries her face in it. I move over slightly on the small two seater couch, taken aback by the kindly attack on my friend.
The man walks in quietly behind the exuberant women, his face void of all emotion as he walks to Lucy and offers his cheek. Lucy automatically kisses it and wraps her arms around his neck.
“Hey Dad.” She says with a smile, earning a nod from him. Lucy looks towards the woman, who I am assuming is her mother, and rolls her eyes. “You’d think she would acknowledge her own daughter, or at least the person whose stomachs she grabbing.” She states, a hint of amusement in her eye.
“Hmph, Nicole knows she’s only the incubator for my grandchild at this point.” The woman says as she squeezes in between myself and Nicole. I stare at Lucy wide eyed, who just shakes her head at her mother’s antics.
Brad walks in from the kitchen, automatically walking towards his father and shaking his hand before approaching his mother and giving her a kiss on her cheek.
“Mum and Dad, this is Jane,” Lucy introduces as she points in my direction, “Jane, this is my Dad, Richard and Mum, Diana.” I give them both a shy smile as Diana places her hand on my knee.
“Oh, I’ve heard so much about you!” she states as she greets me with a massive grin before turning towards the TV and then back to me. “Sleeping Beauty, how fitting for you!”
I can’t help the blush that forms on my face as I look back at the movie, watching as the Prince kisses Sleeping Beauty to break the spell.
“I highly doubt Prince Charming kissed me to bring me out of the coma.” I muse.
“You never know, maybe one of those hot doctors did.” She says before she looks towards Brad. “Though I know it wasn’t Brad, he’s more of a frog than a prince.”
“Hey, you know I’m your son, right?” Brad scolds.
“Which means I know intimately which tadpole you came from.” She quips back. My jaw drops as Lucy and Brad groan, Nicole laughs and Richard stands awkwardly in the corner of the room. I really don’t know how to react, no one prepared me for this.
I sit quietly as Diana asks Nicole about her pregnancy, and how she’s feeling. Diana suspects she will go into labour in the next few hours. I learn that Diana is a retired nurse, just like Nicole, although in the later stages of her career she was an advocate for better health outcomes within Aboriginal communities.
As the hours pass, I start to get used to her witty comments, finding Lucy and Brad’s reactions hilarious. Eventually, Lucy packs up the kids who are both starting to get tired and cranky, and Diana and Richard leave with them, staying with Lucy and Seb until Nicole’s baby is born.
It’s close to ten at night when I collapse on my bed. I had done nothing all day but watch movies and talk to Brad and Lucy’s parents, yet I’m overcome with serious fatigue. I fall asleep almost instantly, with images of cartoon princes dancing through my mind.
I’m startled awake by a hand shaking my shoulder and I jump up in my bed. I see Brad’s tired, yet excited and anxious face hovering over me.
“Sorry to wake you.” He says with no hint of remorse in his eyes at all. “Nicole’s in labour, I’m taking her to the hospital, can you keep an ear out for Tommy until mum gets here?” he asks. I nod and give him a large smile.
“Of course, keep me updated, ok?” he simply nods and disappears out of my room.
I hear the front door close a little while later before I fall back asleep.
It feels like only a couple of minutes later, though I know it’s been a few hours, when I’m woken by a soft sob next to my bed. My eyes blink open as I see a crying Tommy next to my bed, holding onto a stuffed dog and wiping his nose on his sleeve.
“Where’s mummy?” he asks as he sees me. Memories of Brad waking me last night flit through my mind and I automatically reach out for Tommy, pulling him into the bed with me.
“Mummy is having the baby.” I tell him, not really sure what I’m meant to say, but deciding on the truth. “Daddy is with her, so I’m looking after you until your grandparents get here.” Tommy nods his head and wipes his eyes, seemingly content with the information I gave him.
“You hungry?” I ask and he nods again before pulling out of my arms and climbing off the bed. Sighing, I pull back the covers and follow him out to the kitchen.
Before Tommy’s toast is even cooked, I hear the front door open and Diana walk in calling out for Tommy. I wonder briefly if they have a key, or Brad forgot to lock the door, but dismiss it. Tommy jumps off of the seat at the counter and disappears out of the kitchen. I smile at his cute little swagger, and messed up bed hair, he’s just too cute for words.
Richard walks into the kitchen as I hear Diana coddling Tommy. He walks straight to the kettle, giving me a slight nod as he passes and puts it on.
“You’re going to be a big brother Tommy! Are you excited?” I hear Diana’s voice ring out, too loud for the early morning.
“It’s going to be a long day.” Richard grumbles beside me, and I couldn’t agree more.