The warm air envelops me as blissful smell of spring greets my senses. The school bells chime and I am hit with the feeling dread of knowing that only isolation is yet to come. 3:05. Home time.
Day by day my walks home have gradually slowed down meaning my happiness will be extended. Euphoria runs through my veins as I frolic, feeling the cool soft wind through my hair and hearing the clatter of my thick leather school shoes on the pavement. The freshly cutgrass, the fragrant roses, the splash of the sprinklers on my bare calves, I wish I could wander forever.
From a distance I hear the cry of children. My feet begin to swerve as I turn toward the park. Crunches of breaking sticks and crumbling leaves direct me to a series of youngsters, flying high on swings and dropping down on slides.
I sit, for a bit, on a splintered, graffiti infested chair all weary and black. A man catches my eye with his darling little girl decked in a red tartan dress and pigtails aged around 5.
She grins graciously as her father holds her tiny palms tightly. On a short stonewall he lifts her, telling her “spread your wings and fly!” If she were to fall he will be there. She reaches the end and with a jump, he catches her and holds her above his head. “I’m flying daddy!” she exclaims with a joyous laughter. Without a moment I zip home.
My hands shake and my chest have some sort of ache, feeling the anxiety raise I take short abrupt breaths to somehow calm down. Aimlessly walking I feel my throat turn into saw dust; somehow I am outside the door, my door.
Once I drop myself on the couch I freeze, remising about what I saw in a cycle of emotion, downing in envy, my wide eyes begin to sting but nothing happens. I am paralysed in this plight of angst and anxiety, and I can’t even shed a tear.
Hours pass and I remain still until a jingle of keys snap me out of whatever I was in.
“Did you eat anything yet.” He scolds, not even a question in a tone nowhere near friendly. Not even a hello, not even hi.
“What the hell are you doing?” he continued in voice which stabs you in the heart a million times over, making you feel worthless “lazy girl, get changed! Why are you still in your uniform, goddammit you do nothing all day!”
His mutters and complaints are ongoing as I rush up the stairs and change into my pyjamas. Coming back downstairs in no time I stare into the dark silence “Dad?”
He left. He’s gone, like always, not even a goodbye.
Slowly I drift back into my cold mattress and I watch my ceiling. So alone. So numb. The horrible, neglectful, lonesome, loneliness concave my body like hard cold waves on the prickly, invasive sand.
A loud thump wakes me up, he is home, and the stale drench of alcohol fill my nose, as his loud heavy footsteps count each step, sounds of hesitation and confusion are outside my door. My heart races.
My door swings open and I quickly bury myself under the sheet, I revert back to my childhood, thinking of a monster trying to get to me but can’t reach me with this blanket on my head. But deep inside I know otherwise.
My bed tilts as his radiating warmth is by my feet, I don’t react, I try and keep deep breathes although I’m almost shaking. His hand is on my foot and my heart races ten times faster, then I hear him slur.
“I'm sorry,” he mutters through drunken lips “I wish I can be a better father, but you don’t really get lessons do you? My beautiful little girl I’m sorry”
He shuffles and gives me a kiss on my head and head back to his room.
I cant help but smile and the tears come naturally.