You know the saying you don’t know what you have until you lose it. Well, I may only be seventeen years old, but I have learned this the hard way. I used to think my life sucked. You know typical teenage girl stuff. Let me tell you my life was perfect. I had an amazing mother that loved me unconditionally. I had friends that could make me laugh every day. The town I grew up in was safe, and comfortable. I had an amazing boyfriend. Everything was wonderful.
Then, tragedy struck, and my life became a nightmare. My mother and I were in a car accident. Drunk drivers should not be on the road. We were hit head on, and I was in the hospital for a week. I had a bad concussion. When I woke up, my mother wasn’t there. Only Grandma Bee, my father couldn’t even take time off from his busy schedule to check in on me. Go figure with that one!
When I woke up, I asked where mom was. My Grandma Bee took my hand in hers and uttered the words a young girl never wants to hear. She didn’t make it, and to make matters worse I missed her funeral. Feeling horrible doesn’t begin to explain how I felt. If I hadn’t snuck out that night, to meet my friends at the movies, even though mom told me I couldn’t, she would still be here. I did, and now the one person that was my constant in my life is gone.
How do you go on from that? Knowing that you’re the reason the person that meant the most to you in your life is gone, and never returning because of you? Because I was so selfish, and inconsiderate. I just had to have it my way, and dam if anyone told me otherwise.
My life was going to be changing immensely. My Grandma Bee was selling my mother’s house, and I am moving in with her son, my father. The man I barely know. I can count on one hand the number of times I have seen him in my lifetime. How he came from the amazing woman sitting next to me I’ll never know.
So, moving to a new town, starting a new school. That’s my future now. Leaving all my old friends behind. I broke it off with my boyfriend. I mean we will be living two states away from each other now. Not like he’ll visit or be faithful to me once I’m gone. The only reason we were together is because he’s the star football player, and I was head cheerleader. Well not anymore, I’ve changed these last few months after the accident. I’m not who I used to be.
People aren’t wrong when they say that you grow up young once you lose a parent. When your whole world goes up in smoke. Grandma Bee stayed with me at my childhood home for the summer. Until the house sold, and then we were going through everything. Taking a lot of mom’s things to the goodwill and throwing other things away. I packed my books, and laptop. Along with some clothes. That’s about all I am bringing on this new journey.
“It’s going to be all right you know. You’re a strong woman, I know you can handle this.” I look over at Grandma Bee. You wouldn’t know she’s forty-three years old. She looks like she’s in her early thirties. Beautiful blonde hair, blue eyes, and a body most younger women would kill for.
“I know, I’m just… well I really don’t know what I am anymore. To be honest I don’t feel much of anything. Haven’t in months.” I give her a sad smile.
She gives one back and pats my shoulder. She gets comfortable in her seat and pulls her blanket that she brought on the train with her over her head to get some sleep. I reach over and lift her hand, giving her a light kiss, and go back to looking out the window.
I wasn’t lying when I said I don’t feel anything anymore. Just yesterday, I was trying to get my zipper to my duffle bag zipped up, it was being stubborn like always. Somehow my finger got caught and had to wrestle it free. When I got it free, looking down, I watched as my blood flitted down my hand to my wrist, and onto my old bedroom carpet. The not so funny thing was I didn’t feel the pain at all.
I just went into the bathroom and cleaned it under the faucet. Then, bandaged it up. When I looked into the mirror, I saw a shadow of who I used to be. My light red hair was in disarray, I had dark circles under my eyes, and I was white as a ghost. Looking at myself made me want to cry, but I think I was all cried out. I have no tears left in me.
I jumped in the shower, and then went straight to bed. When I woke up this morning gram made me pancakes and told me to eat up. We had a long train ride ahead of us. Now here we are, in the middle of the night, on the train, and we still have eight hours to go. I would try to sleep, but there is no point in that. The nightmares will just wake me up.
They have grown worse these last few weeks. I keep dreaming of arguing with my mother in the car, and then I see headlights heading right for us. I, and then everything is black. I wake up in a cold sweat every time. I don’t know how to make them stop. Wish I did.
It hurts to know the last thing we did was fight. That the last thing I said to her was “I hate you.” Who says that to her own mother? The therapist the doctors made me see, says its survivor guilt. That I need to face my demons and then I’ll be able to move on. Whatever the hell that means!
Like I can just move on. From losing my mother, the only constant in my life. From changing schools and losing all my friends. Not knowing who I am anymore, and not recognizing myself when I look in the mirror. How do you move on from any of that?
In my opinion that therapist was a quack. He didn’t help at all. I would tell him about what I dreamt about, and he constantly asked how that makes you feel. How do you think it made me feel dumbass? I hate when people ask that question. I want to ask right back how would you feel?
Then, there’s the pity in everyone’s faces. They look at me like I’m broken. Maybe I am, but they don’t have to treat me like I’m porcelain. As though, I’m about to break at any moment. I just wish there was someone that could understand me, and not talk to me like I could go crazy and have a breakdown at any given moment.
I feel alone now. Having to face this big, scary world on my own. When I’m only seventeen. Knowing I have my gram, as I always have, and will for hopefully a long time, but she has her own problems. She has a grown son she barely sees herself.
My father, that’s another story all together. My mom and him had a fast-paced romance. Met the last year of college, and my mother said she was so blown away by him she just had to have him. They married after only two months of dating and found out she was pregnant with me soon after. Once I was born, my dad got a job as journalist. He worked his way up, and now is one of the most well-known journalists out there.
Only problem with that is he’s never around. It eventually took a tole on my mother, and when I was three, they divorced. My mom moved away with me and settled down in my hometown. The only proof I ever received my father was even alive was when he called twice a year. Once on my birthday, and at Christmas. My mom got monthly checks from him. That’s it, I know nothing more about him.
His mother, my grandma Bee, she came to visit us four times a year. Called every week and would take me on trips for two weeks wherever I wanted to go in the U.S every summer. Besides my mother she is the best woman I know. I’ve always been so close to her. She is the strongest, most stubborn, beautiful, smart mouthed woman I know. She’ll do anything for everyone.
That’s why it baffles me how my father could have come from this woman’s loins. He’s the most selfish person I know, and from what I can tell he’s stern. Our short phone calls tell me how serious he takes the world. Which also confuses the hell out of me on how he landed my mother in the first place.
My mother, Caroline, was sweet natured. She had a heart of gold and was one of the smartest people you’ll ever meet. She had such a large circle of friends. People couldn’t help it, once you got to know her, they just flocked to her. You couldn’t help but love her. She was so beautiful. She had a brighter color of red hair then me, freckles galore on her face, long legs, slim body, and light blue eyes.
I got a lot of my personality and looks from her. I have her red hair, all the freckles (that I hate), and a slim body. My legs go on for days as my gram always tells me. Which make me smile. I know I have my fathers’ eyes though. Because mine are a jade green color. My grandmother always said my eyes are unique just like my fathers, and her late husbands. They’re jade green color with some lighter green mixed in, and you can see some grey as well.
My personality was a lot like my mothers too. I loved being around people and talked with everyone. Wasn’t ever mean to anyone. Never saw the point. I just try to accept everyone for who they are. Was always the loudest, and most outspoken of the group. Never afraid to speak my mind and share my opinions. My gram always says I’m a fighter, and I’m stronger than I know.
After the accident, I changed a lot. Everyone around me could tell. I became closed off. I’m quieter around others. Its difficult to get me to talk much at all. No longer share my opinions or speak my mind. Mostly, because I just don’t care much about anything. My gram still tells me I’m stronger than I realize, but I think she’s wrong. I’m broken now. I don’t think there is much that can fix me. Many people have tried these last couple months. No positive results so far.
Not sure if I’ll ever be how I used to be. Don’t know if I’ll be who I was. Maybe I just need to get used to the girl I have become. If I’m being honest with myself this maybe it now. A shell of the girl I used to be. Feel like giving up a lot of the time, and maybe I should. Sometimes I wonder if anyone would really care?
These thoughts make me think there is no going back. Won’t be getting better anytime soon. I know it breaks my grams heart, and I wish I didn’t. Wish I could be better for her. Wish there was something in my life, or someone that could help me. I know I will never be back to the girl I used to be, but I wish I could become the woman I want to be.