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Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Bitter sorrow

I layed in bed curled up in my plush, fluffy blanket. I snuggled into the comforting, familiar folds of the comforter I'd had since I was young. I would normally have been asleep hours ago, but the commotion coming from below my bedroom kept me from dozing off. Every time my eyes were about to flutter shut out of exhaustion, another loud noise jolted me awake.

I smooshed my ear into the billowy fluffs of my pillow. I attempted to think happy thoughts, but the images of my parents stained my thoughts. I had never seen my parents fight before. We were always the perfect American family, with 3 kids and a dog, a nice house, and great parents. I wanted it to stay that way. Looking back to the family photos of all 5 of us together and smiling, I am envious of what we used to be. I felt like it was my fault. I had all the guilt in the world.

I remember eventually falling asleep, and my mom walked into my room and gracefully rested her cold, worn hand on my sweaty forehead. The next day it was as if nothing had ever happened. Everyone in my family went along like any other day, trying to cover the truth about how they really felt.

This schedule continued for weeks, maybe months. I never thought anything would actually come out of the fighting. I thought it would all get better and life would continue as it had for the rest of my life. I knew that what I hoped wouldn't come true when my dad suddenly started sleeping on the couch. He claimed it was the dog. He said she barked too much. I was so innocent and unknowing that I believed him. Their fighting progressed to the point where they only talked when necessary.

I will remember that one night forever. I was eagerly anticipating the Zoey 101 movie premiere while my typical teen sister awaited the premiere of One Missed Call. My parents told her she couldn't go out, so she threw a fit, complaining how long she had been waiting to see this. They said that it was important that she stayed home.

Questions soared through my head: what's happening? is everything OK? what could it be? My family gathered around the living room, all in our own corners as if a brick wall were separating us. This wasn't our usual family gathering, filled with giggles and chattering. Now the silence stung my ears. The tension was so thick, I could break, and worst of all, the guilty, scared, and innocent looks on my parents' faces made me apprehensive to hear what they had to say. My mom finally broke the silence.

"Kids, we love you very much, but this isn't working out. We think for the better of all of us that we got a divorce," she said.

Divorced. A 7-letter word I couldn't bear to hear. It left a sour, bitter taste in my mouth. This couldn't be right. I felt so stupid that I hadn't seen this coming. The reality hadn't yet set in. I felt frozen in time. Everything around me started to spin. The walls started to close in on me. I felt like I couldn't breathe. My mom approached me for a hug, but I pushed her away. My siblings and I ran up to my sister's bed and nuzzled against each other. I fell asleep sobbing, our tear-streaked faces smooshed together.

That night I thought back to the sleep-deprived night where it all started. I wished with all my heart to go back to that day, when everything was normal.

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