The joys of being stared at

Chapter one

No way, nada, this is not happening! This my friend is a bad dream, a horrible terrorizing dream concocted from the depths of my crazy little brain to scare the crap out of me. Because that's just the kind of sense of humour my brain has. Because there is no way what my dad was telling me was reality. I refuse to believe the unrealistic, life shattering dribble which is freely flowing from his mouth right now. It couldn't be real, why would it be real. What had I done to deserve this besides my less than average D in chemistry? That's right... nothing! I have, in theory, been very well behaved. I say in theory because from what my dad knows of my behaviour I have been the perfect little girl, and that's all that counts to prove my point that this nightmarish scenario wasn't real!

And yet... I couldn't deny the little part of me nagging away swearing this isn't a dream (nightmare). Damn I hate that part of me. Why is my dad doing this to me? Can't he tell that this won't help me in any way other than making the rest of my grades level with chemistry? His mouth is still moving but all sound that might be being produced for my benefit right now is to waste. I couldn't listen even if I tried with this rapid (always present might I add) internal monologue going on in my head. Usually I can work around my inner commentator but with such a jumble of thoughts racking through my brain right now that was a lost cause. It can't be true? It isn't true! But this isn't a dream so it must be true. But no way would my dad ever do this to me so it isn't true. Oh shut up! Accept the truth Mary. You're moving back in with mom!

This realisation snapped me out of whatever trance I'm in as my dad's words finally reached my ears. "...and I know you don't want to move in with her but god damn it Mary she's your mother. And I know, I know she was a bit dippy last time you saw her but it was her way of coping I guess. And now she has sorted herself out for, she has paid off her debts, calmed herself down and is now ready for the responsibility of a teenage daughter." He finished, obviously squeezing everything he had to say in that speech as he knows he won't get another chance once my temper catches up with him.

"But she's irresponsible... she doesn't know how to cook... she is always out doing something and forgets to tell me about it. Oh and did I mention... she lives on the other side of the country!" I screamed, how could he willingly unleash such hell onto me. I mean the woman went to work one morning and didn't come back for two week saying she went on a spontaneous holiday with a someone she met at yoga class (oh yeah didn't mention I was 6 at the time) of course as soon as news spread I was whisked off to a concerned neighbour and forced to stay there for the duration of her trip. Also about a year after her and my dad's separation (they were never married) she out of the blue quit her job as a well paid researcher –don't ask me on what- and went to medical school. Did she think it through no, as she didn't have a place for me to go, didn't have the funds to go 5 years to become the medical psychiatrist she has always dreamed of being for a whole of 2 seconds before she quit her old job and didn't even know where the school she enrolled in was! So I was packed off to go live with my dad in New York when I was 8 and I must say that was the happiest day of my life. And now (apparently) my mum has finally settled down with a man that keeps her happy, a job that keeps her out of debt and a house. And honestly I couldn't be happier for her but happiness does not translate to oh yey I can finally move back in with mom. I like living with dad. He was a caring parent but always gave me my space. He let me know when he was out and what time he would be back and most importantly he gave me independence. Yeah, he was a more horrible cook than mom but he made up for that with a weekly take away pizza. And because he didn't care if I cooked dinner (unlike mom) I discovered I loved it and have become quite good at it if I do say so myself. So to say I was pissed at this news was an understatement.

"Look I know it will be a big change but we always said you living with me was never a permanent situation. And now your mother is perfectly capable of taking care of you and more importantly she wants to. She misses you Mary. She wants to get to know you again and see you after all these years." Dad said. I can't believe he is taking her side! Does he really want to get rid of me? Has he been counting down the days until my mom was ready to take me back? I can't believe this, why doesn't he want to fight with mom over custody of me?

"So you don't want me anymore so you're shipping me off to her just like she did when I was 8?" I screamed, tears starting to well up in my eyes. Yes unfortunately I was an angry crier which isn't good considering how easy it is to make me angry.

"No or course not," my dad reassured me- stepping closer so he could sweep me into a massive hug. "I've loved you living with me so much. But she's your mother and she deserves a second chance with you. I wouldn't even consider this if I knew she wasn't the best thing for you right now."

I pushed away slightly so I could see his face. "What do you mean best thing for me? Living in New York-my home- is what's best for me. Staying with my friends is what's best for me. Staying with you is what's best for me." My voice cracked on the last part as I felt a tear streak down my pale cheek.

My dad lifted his thumb to wipe it away and looked at me a while before saying, "look your growing up into a woman and you've never had a real woman's guidance whilst growing up, I'm no good for talking to and I don't know how to approach a situation the way your mom would. You need her to become the best you can be, and that's all I ever wanted for you. You may not see how this will help you now, but one day you'll thank me and your mother. Now go pack this decision is non- negotiable, your plane is in two days." And with one last hug he left me in our apartment's living room.

And then it hit. He's making me move because he feels awkward talking about girl problems. Really? He thinks it would be any less bad talking to a woman who I hadn't seen in 8 years? Because it wouldn't! And I can honestly promise myself that I wool never thank either of them for the horror that has descended upon me today. NEVER.

But unfortunately my dad would never give up once he's set his mind to something. So packing was my only plan of action right now, great. On my way to my room it struck me, I knew my mom lived in Washington but where- Now that was a question that probably my dad didn't even know the answer to, oh this day just keeps getting better and better. I don't even know what I'm getting myself into, I can't prep myself for the war zone that awaits me on the other side of the USA. I'm going in blindfolded, and that's just sad.

Begrudgingly I threw my suitcase (lime green and shiny) onto my single bed which objected to the sudden weight change with a painful squeak of the mattress. I started shuffling through my draws for my favourite clothes to pack in my only suitcase- the rest would have to go into boxes.

I groaned in anticipation for me having to pack, I swear it should be a form of punishment. Forget prison- hey you over there with the women's purse in your hand, come pack up my room and all will be forgiven. Hell yeah that would be a much better deterrent than any ordinary life sentence would be. After sorting out my favourite clothes I began to manically pack them into the suitcase. You would think that since they were my favourites I would fold them. Well you would be mistaken, their already getting special treatment by being in the suitcase being folded would just go to their heads and quite honestly no one likes clothes with a massive ego. And also it would have taken to long!

After having to sit on my suitcase to squash all my clothes in to zip it up I jumped off (ungracefully I might add) and yanked the case off with me. It landed on the floor with a loud bang vibrating the floor boards beneath my feet. Not going to lie- I was pretty proud that it hadn't landed on my foot, maybe the world is now in my favour due to the horrible turn my life has taken. Damn it the world probably pities me now! Great, where was its sympathy when this life changing decision was made behind my back? Oh yeah, probably off turning it's cheek because it finds my anger amusing.

In frustration I threw myself onto my now vacant bed and decided to sleep my troubles away. Only then did I discover how exhausted I was and almost immediately blacked out the minute my head hit my lime green pillow.