Someone once told me that the worst pain a child can bring to its mother is leave her or hurt itself. A mother would, without any doubt, die for her child rather than see her child suffer. So that’s what I’m going to do. I’m going to leave and destroy myself slowly from the inside out.
I heard the increasingly loud thumps of her unstable steps from a mile away, but I didn’t dare to look towards our apartment door. Forcing my eyes to the stained carpet ground, I pretended not to notice as the lock on our door shook violently with the sound of crashing bells in our dead-silent apartment. I heard the faint echoes of a bark from somewhere far away, and I tried to focus on the continuing echoes to avoid the situation at hand. Don’t look. Don’t flinch. Just keep your head down. The door finally blew open and the scent of intoxication immediately hit me. The scent was so strong that I had to stop myself from blocking my nose and closing my stinging eyes. Without moving my head, I attempted to take a glimpse at my mother and I immediately looked back down, feeling the blood ride up my neck to my head as I saw that she was practically naked. Silver sequins from her skin-tight dress flickered and reflected the dim light of our dying light-bulb as she tried to stand up straight; a scene almost comical in the dull gray quiet of our apartment living room. Her body seemed to slump over on itself as she attempted to remove her sky-high heels, and her face was a mess of poorly done makeup. She looked like a prostitute that had come back after a long night.
“What’rrr youu doingggg herree,” she slurred. Pulling down her very short dress riding up her legs, she took more than a moment to look straight at me with her sleepy eyes. She smiled, and I saw that her lip was split. Blood, black in the darkness of our living room, trickled down her face as she hastily managed to turn around to wipe it off with her hands.
“Mom, where were you?” Surprisingly, my voice was certain and steady. “You weren’t at Haven’s house were you?” Silence drowned the small room, then she suddenly looked down at me with an innocent confusion only belonging to a child. It looked wrong on the aging face of a middle-aged woman. Cocking her head, she asked, “Why? Does it bother you? He gives us all we need.” I couldn’t take it anymore. The familiar sensation of acid crawling up my throat continued as I slowly and silently walked to my room. She didn’t even seem to notice. As I looked back, I saw that she was still staring at the same spot with the same expression of childlike confusion. I decided: I was going to leave.