A Missing Bond

January 7, 2008
“Do you have the papers ready?” The man in a brand new Armani suit asked with a stern and chilling voice. Sandra handed him the package of papers that were smeared with tears of sorrow and regret. Her tan skinny hands trembled as she passed him the papers that had changed her life forever.
It was final. The life she knew and loved was over. It was just her and her thirteen year old daughter, Vanessa, now. They moved into a rundown one bedroom apartment in an old community until they could afford something a little better. The room was dark and cold. As they walked in, a rush of disappointment and sadness went through them. There had been no sign of life for a while. Sandra stared and thought how could this get worse?
Vanessa visited her father, John, every other weekend. Sandra didn’t receive any help from John. Sandra struggled to get Vanessa to her fathers on time. John gave Sandra a specific time that Vanessa could be dropped off and picked up.
A few months past and slowly everything was getting back on track. Sandra was earning enough money to start thinking about a new home. Sandra came home from a long stressful day of work to find Vanessa sitting with her bags on the front step.
“What are you doing out here?” Sandra asked with a confused look on her face.
“I’m leaving.” Vanessa replied.
“What? Where are you going?” Sandra said trying to hold back her tears.
“I have decided to live with dad.” Vanessa whispered trying not to make a scene.
“You can’t just leave! Why are you leaving?” Sandra whispered with a quiver in her voice.
“There he is. I have to go.” Vanessa started to raise her voice with a stern tone. “I just don’t like it here. I miss my dad and I want to live with him, not you.” Vanessa began to get really aggravated and upset. Vanessa’s cheeks started to turn red with anger. She didn’t know why this was so hard for her mom to understand. “I have to go now. Good-bye.”
Sandra stood at the front porch of her apartment building. She stood there helpless and confused. She felt as if someone took the life right out of her. She watched her thirteen year old daughter step into her father’s brand new red loaded Ford Focus. Vanessa never looked back to wave good bye. Tears ran down Sandra’s face and washed the makeup off that once covered the dark circles underneath her eyes. Ten minutes passed and Sandra was still standing at the front porch. Sandra made her way up the cold cement stairs of her apartment building. She walked as if there was nothing left to live for. Sandra walked in to her apartment and headed straight for the old faded green leather couch. She laid on the couch and cried her self to sleep that night. Sandra woke up the next morning and thought that everything was a dream. Sandra dragged herself off the couch to go wake up Vanessa. She opened the door to Vanessa’s room and the memory of her daughter leaving smacked her in the face. At this moment she new it hadn’t been a dream.
That Monday at work Sandra checked her email. She received an email from Vanessa. It read:
Dear Mom,
I know you are wondering why I left so soon and with out telling you before hand. I just don’t want to live with you anymore. I have no friends at my new school, we live in a crappy neighborhood, and you are never there when I get home from school. You are either at work or to tired to do anything. I planned to leave before you got home, so it wouldn’t be as hard for you when I left. I will still come and see you every other weekend if I can make it.

Sandra held back her tears so that no one would ask her what was wrong. Thoughts ran through her mind about the good times they had spent together. She remembered the day when Vanessa was only three years old and Sandra took her to her first day of preschool. Vanessa did not want to go to school and cried at the thought of Sandra leaving her side. Sandra ended up staying that whole day because every time she let go of Vanessa’s hand she would start to cry. Memories so close to her were now all erased. She tried to reassure herself that she was a good mother. I just get home a little bit after she does from school. I’m just trying to make enough money for us to have a nice life. She kept the thoughts running through her head about why she had this had happen to her.
Vanessa came one weekend every month for the next year. Vanessa showed no interest in making the relationship any better. Vanessa finally made the decision to cut off all ties with her mother. The letter read:
I have so much going for me in my life and I don’t have time for you. I don’t need you and all the problems you bring along keep me from living my life. You were not the mother that I needed. All you gave me was your brown eyes. I’m sorry that this is how it has to go but I need what is best for me.

Sandra melted when she read this letter. Her heart broke into a million little pieces. How could someone have so much hate for some one else. Sandra thought to herself as the tears raced down her face talking off the make up that covered the dark circles under her eyes. Sandra wrote her back.
I don’t know what I did for you to feel this way about me. I have only tried to make your life the best it could be. I will do anything for you to consider fixing our relationship. I don’t want to lose you. Please, I’m begging you, Vanessa. Please reconsider this.
I love you,

It had been three months since the letter was sent to Vanessa and there has been no reply. Sandra sat and waited for Vanessa to change her mind.
That day came sooner than she thought it would. Friday at work Sandra checked her email one last time before she went home to an empty house. Sandra had one new email and it was from Vanessa. Sandra closed her eyes and took three deep breathes. Sandra opened the email and it read:
How are you? It has been three months now and I have been thinking a lot lately. I know what I did was wrong to leave you but I think I really needed my space at the time. I still am going to live at dads but I want to talk to you. Could we meet at Portillos by my house on Saturday for lunch? I want to try and work things out.
Hope to see you soon.

Sandra woke up that Saturday morning with a nervous knot in her stomach. Sandra didn’t know what to expect. She drove to Portillos and thought of what to say to Vanessa. When she got to Portillos Vanessa had already gotten a table in the corner of the restaurant. Vanessa looked very nervous and kept her eyes focused on the table. Sandra sat down across from her daughter and an awkward silence fell in place.
“Hi mom” Vanessa said with a quite voice.
Sandra looked at her with big glassy eyes that were filled with tears. “Hi Vanessa. How have you been?”
“I have been really busy lately. I really wanted to talk about this whole situation. I’m not sorry that I left but I should have talked to you before. I’m not going to move back because I have a lot going on in my life. I would like to come every other weekend.” Vanessa said with a nervous voice.
Vanessa continued to tell her mother all that has happened to her and her thoughts on their relationship. Sandra looked at her daughter with a faint smile and glassy eyes. For once these were not tears of sorrow but tears of joy. Sandra knew that Vanessa would never want to come back and live with her but, this was a start to a new beginning.

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