Why can she still see him...and are they really just delusions?
As I walk in the house, I throw my backpack off my shoulder, a clip catching on my long brown hair. I cringe and pull away, ripping out a couple of strands. Home sweet home…it’s been a rough week, and today I haven’t even been called crazy. Sometimes I forget this is where I grew up. I've been dreaming of life on my own for a long time. But at 17 years old, it isn't so realistic. My mom follows close behind me inside the house trying to match my increasing pace. My parents strongly believe that I don’t need my own car. Which made sense, until I realized it's just another way for them to watch me 24/7. I don't want to hurt my mom by telling her, but it’s pretty annoying when it comes to having your mom pick you up every day.
“Well yes, my day is amazing how about yours? Oh great, huh?” She finishes sarcastically. "Honestly, where are the manners I raised you with?" I groan and gently massage my temples. I haven't been the nicest lately and I can't help but feel bad for her sometimes.
“Sorry. Just not feeling incredibly social right now,” I say. She raises her eyebrow at me expecting further explanation. “Dad called me earlier,” I mutter, hoping I won’t have to give her too much information. Soon after my brother Sean’s death at only 18, my mom and dad split. Feels like it was God’s way of saying “I guess you aren’t dealing with enough drama, being 15, so let’s add some more!” Like a major screw you. I guess it’s a good thing I don’t believe in God. It was 2 years ago, but the memory still has a way of popping up when I want it the least. My dad had told Sean he could take his car for an after-prom party after my mom had already told him no. She thought it was unsafe. Of course, my dad had made it a habit of ignoring what she wanted. He has a way of wanting to prove people wrong. I guess he's always been a bit of a cocky asshole.
So, of course, my dad got what he wanted, and Sean took the car. Several hours later his body was found surrounded by four of his friends I'd met years ago. The moment I heard what happened, I broke a little bit inside. As soon as everything was settled with the funeral, my parents fought like never before. I had taken to hiding myself upstairs and reaching for Sean’s hand before remembering it wasn't there anymore. There’s something about losing someone that people overlook. When you automatically look for them in a crowd, or when something happens and you want to tell them so you go to text or call, and then it hits you all over again. Those were some of the worst moments. The ones where I momentarily forgot and was crushed down again. Soon my mom divorced my dad. I guess Sean’s death was the last straw, which makes a lot of sense I was surprised they hadn’t separated earlier. Things were never great between them, but at least I’d had Sean to make me feel safe.
“Oh. Well alright. What did he want?” She begins to put dishes away, trying to look cool and collected, as she always does when dad is mentioned, but I can see right through it.
“Just the typical dad…asked me basic questions, and then asked about you,” She flinched, reminded of his attempts to contact her. He doesn’t necessarily want to get back together, but there was a lot left unsaid between the two of them.
“Well tell him I have nothing to say to him.”
“Of course. I will.” After a short pause, I say, “Mom are you okay?”
“Yes perfectly fine. Why don’t you get started on your work, will you? We can talk more later.” She says quickly before leaving the room.
I sigh as I grab my things and head upstairs to my room. I don’t love my dad. Or at least I don’t think I can call it love at this point. I talk to him briefly over the phone, so that I don’t make things worse, but it’s minimal effort and he can tell. He just isn’t responsible enough to be a father, and shouldn’t have had kids. He let Sean go as a point against my mom because they were in the middle of a fight. He just didn’t expect the crash. I don’t think it’s petty to stay mad though, I think it’s completely warranted. Whether he meant to or not, he challenged my mom’s authority and let Sean go without a second thought. In my eyes, he is the reason Sean isn’t here with me right now, and that’s reason enough.
Without him, I started to fall apart a little bit. The night my parents had their first fight since losing Sean is when things got too much. I saw him. I didn't mention it until I had to. My mom could only notice a certain amount of paranoia and panic before she forced it out of me. I've been seeing a therapist every day since plus medication that seems to be working so far. I haven't had a hallucination in 2 years, so why does it feel so disappointing?