This mother is far worse than I could have expected. Air. I need air. "Excuse me" I quickly leave the dining room into the chilly December air. I cuts me like a knife and gives me goose bumps all over. I don't pay attention to that just to my swirling emotions. Relief and disappointment, from discovering I have my period and am not pregnant. Happiness and pain, from meeting my siblings and not knowing how to leave them all behind. Tears stream down my cheeks. Why can't I just keep my emotions in check and not be such a freak?
I watch my little sister quickly exit the room. She is clearly rattled as everyone in this room. This I all so much to process anger boils in me once more as I see Kristina's heartless tears spill to her empty plate. I clench my hands into fists. Nikki leans in close and mumbles sweet nothings into my ear to calm me down. I unclench, turn to her and kiss her lightly. Mom is about to leave and check on Autumn when Summer and I stand at the same time. I answer for the both of us
We'll make sure she's okay
We open the door and see Autumn standing in the middle of the back yard as it gently begins to snow. I notice her almost frozen tears and wipe them away. She looks at me freighted eyes just begging for what we all want. Love. Summer grabs my hand and then Autumn's.
Things will all work out. At least we have each other. She says softly. I smile at them and pull them both into my arms. I never realized how much someone needed their family to get through life.
Warmth. My name finally feels suitable. Here in my bother and sister's arms I feel like I belong. I laughing as Autumn starts to shake subtly. She looks to me and laughs as well. Her laugh is sweet like a bird's light song.
So you have never been near snow huh? I say stating the obvious. She looks confused but Hunter catches on we slowly back away from her and quick as I can I crouch, scoop a handful of snow, and fling it at her. Her face is hilarious so much shock from change in the air and crunchy snow hitting her. Her face turns playfully wicked as she kicks up the snow to my pants. I squeal at the sudden cold. Hunter is doubling over laughing. Autumn and I exchange looks then make nice lovely snow balls and chase him around the back yard with them.
No fair it two against one. He says when we tackle him to the ground. Our snowball fight has brought out the curious Donald and David. I wave them over and the games begin once more.
I can't believe I'm actually laughing and dripping wet from the snow. Snow is my new inspiration. So out of order and yet so beautiful. Brice comes to my mind and it actually doesn't make my heart sink. I love him and I want him to love me the real me. If he loves me he will forgive me for the lies I have told. I promise myself no more drinking and to be more open with my OCD so that not only will other people accept it.
I will learn to as well. My slight shivering has turned to trembling uncontrollably. I feel something nice and warm covering me. It's Hunters jacket. He makes a show of running to Nikki and telling her she was the only way he could keep warm. She giggled and wrapped her tiny frame around him. Logically body heat is the best way to help someone keep warm but in Hunter's case he's milking it. I sit in the snow and wrap the oversized coat around me. The little puppy Sasha runs about following David's every move. So I'm surprised when a fluffy torpedo is launched at me. I laugh as Sasha licks my face. David sits with me and frowns a bit.
She's not listening to me why can't I do anything right? He says sadly. So many times I've asked myself the same question. Instinct kicks in, not motherly but Big-sisterly.
"She's a baby she has to rebel a little so that she has room to grow. It's your job to steer her in the right direction. Then she'll respect you."
Was mommy steered in the right direction? He asks quietly. Didn't expect that one.
"Grandma did her best but…" think about it for a minute
"Mommy fell in love with a monster" He nodded in understanding and left the yard to work on more discipline on Sasha's behavior. Soon everyone is soaked to the bone and heading inside. Grandma Marie makes some hot chocolate for everyone and we sit by the fire. Kristina and Trey have long since left after dinner. I came all this way to be with them both and they are gone. A spec of anger flares. I feel my cheeks going red.
My sister seems lost in thought so I poke her. She jumps and turns to see it's me and softens.
"You okay?" I ask. She nods and goes back to her cocoa. Her wall is still up and I can't help but ponder what she is thinking about. So I pull her to my temporary room.
"Something is on your mind and it's bothering you. We are sisters so we should be close and share secrets or something that is what all the others do. We might have just met but there is always a place to start" I tell her desperate to bond with her. Her hand brushes my face to my fading scar.
Come here I want to do your hair. She says randomly. Odd suggestion but I give in. We sit on the bed as she braids my hair.
I met my father for the first time in eight years about two weeks ago. He tells me that when I was younger that my grandfather and Aunt took me away and kept me away from him. Her story is tricking out.
He says they were wrong for taking me away and keeping me away. I believed him until we got here. I guess I should thank them. But apologizing has to go before thanks. Their lives were put on halt because of me. Her Texan voice cracks she is close to tears.
They couldn't keep away the loneliness it was filled by a boy named Brice. I love him but my OCD clouds my mind from time to time. I wanted to get pregnant so we could have my fantasy family. I messed up though big time I just hope he can forgive me. My hair is done and so is her story. I mumble a thank you. Her story brings Kyle into my mind.
"I've been is too many foster homes to count. My father kind of broke your parents up. This home was the only solid place I knew. I would sometimes get jealous because they kept Hunter and not me. But Grandma Marie can only hold so many of Kristina's kids. So hold no blame for them. I have a boyfriend named Kyle the most wonderful man in the world. We we're living in his truck when we crashed on our way to a hotel. He's fine now but so far away. Too far a way to bear actually." And right them our bond was unbreakable as it always will be. I grab her hand lead her into the living room.
Perfect is what describes this moment. With my angel by my side nibbling my ear and my family is happy. Moments like that don't last forever. I see Trey's car pull up. I race to the door before they can ruin anything else. I close the door behind me so no one will hear. They are high on the monster and wobbly all over the place.
"Look I don't care where you go but don't come here. Everyone is happy." I turn to Kristina. "Your kids are happy doesn't that mean anything to you?" she scoffs
Why is everyone keeping me away from my kids I'm their mother. I'm your mother it's my right. I don't even know why I come here. Explosion.
"When have you ever given a damn, all your kids are messed up because of you? But guess what mom we are fine without you so do us all a favor and leave and take him with you." I leave them and take a deep breath before I talk to anyone. Nikki's eyes show concern but I kiss it all away, tonight I'll show her I love her and how much I need her. Group photo time everyone smiles and after it's taken resume to their original places.
Wait let me get the kids and that mean you too Hunter. Mom says pulling out her camera again. I stand back put my arms around my sister's and brother's and smile.
That talk with my son will haunt me forever. I am messed up and because of me I messed up a huge part of my children's lives. I am going to change and I will not come back until I do. I can't hurt them anymore. With Trey by my side we'll come clean if it kills us. Bre is dead and Kristina killed her. I'm coming home again and it's been long overdue.