It all started with a scar. A little mark that got left on my heart and decided to stay and ache at me. I’m Blake Melanie Stanson. I live in this small town in the heart of Pennsylvania. Today is the day I go to see my father.
We was arrested last night for drunk driving and possession of cocaine. We haven’t seen him in two months. He just left us. Then we got that call. That call that has haunted me for the past twelve hours. I picked up the phone. “Is this the Stanson residence?” A deep voice said through the phone. “Yes what do you want?” I said rather annoyed because it was 1:00am and Mom was asleep. “Do you know a Bruce Stanson? He’s been arrested for drunk driving and the selling and possession of cocaine.” I said hold on. As I took three deep breaths the worst only came to my mind. The Scar was cut open again. And this time it hurt even worse. “Mom, Mom wake up, they found Dad.” I said quivering with sadness. She got up and I handed her our old raggedy telephone. The police officer and my mother talked for a good two seconds before my mother hung up and said, “Go to bed, you’ll be missing school tomorrow and we’re going to see your father tomorrow.”
I went to bed. I tried laying my head on the pillow and closing my eyes. I tried sleeping, but everytime I closed my eyes I saw the most haunting thing in the world. I saw my father pushing me on the swing. I saw her. Me. I saw the little trusting innocent girl who loved her Daddy more than anything. I saw him. My father. I saw the promise in his eyes, despite the bitterness in his heart. I couldn’t help but wonder… What did I do?
My mother woke me up this morning to tell me to get ready. I put on a pair of blue jeans and a sweatshirt. I wore my cowgirl boots and brushed my long brown hair. I went to look into the mirror and I just hurt. I looked at my eyes. I saw the same promise that my fathers held. I pulled my locket from under my shirt so it would show. My father gave it to me for my eighth birthday. It had my mother, me and my father in it. I sat there looking at myself. And for the first time in a long time, I prayed. I’m not exactly sure what I was asking for. I just wanted to feel connected to something. It didn’t really help.
My mother didn’t look like she got much sleep either. She works at the diner downtown and she had to cancel her shift. When we arrived at the Sheriff's Department. We both took a deep breath straightened our shoulders and walked in. We told them our name and they took us to a room. My mom got to talk to him for 6 minutes and then it’s my turn.
I’m walking in. I see nothing but grey unhappy walls. Walls that hold more secrets than a town gossip. He’s right there. My father. I started biting my thumb. I do that when I’m nervous. He looked my dead in the eyes. My scar began to hurt. How could 6 minutes make up for the loss of two months. This is how our 6 minutes went.
“Hello Blake. We don't have that much time so I want to make as much of it as possible. I’ll go first. I’m sorry I walked out on you baby girl. You really have been the light of my life. I messed up. I can be better I promise. You need to be strong for us. I’m going to be gone for awhile. Make sure you take care of your mom. Make sure you take care of yourself. It’s going to be ok I promise. I love you.”
“I love you too Daddy. Why were you gone so long? I want you to know how much this hurts. You abandoned me and mom. Do you know how hard it is without you? Mom is sad. She seems to be drinking a lot. Our life is falling apart, Daddy. What do I do?
“Your times up kid.” Said a tough Police Officer. As my father was escorted away from me, I shouted “I love you daddy.” He didn't yell back.
I walked out of the room. The lump in my throat became bigger. My stomach became hollow. I just need my dad. My mom stood up from her chair and ran to hug me. We both started crying. We got in the car with our shoulders slumped and our heads down.
We got home and I went to my room. I looked through all of our family photos. I don’t know why I was allowing myself to hurt the way I did.
Mom came storming into my room and yelled at my to pick my crap up and to go clean the kitchen. I had never seen her like this. I got to the kitchen and it was pretty clean except for the liquor cabinet bottles spread across the counter. Most of them empty. At that moment I could see my fate. I could see what would happen.
Days went by the same way. Mom got drunk she yelled at me. She passed out on the couch. I went to bed. When I woke up she was back drinking. I got my butt to school and faced the day. Being 11 years old isn’t really easy for me. My dad is going to be gone for the next four years. What’ll happen to us?
My teacher goes to our church. She noticed we hadn’t been going for a while and she asked me what was happening at home. Of course I was stupid enough to tell her. My mother was sent to rehab for a few weeks and I went to go live with my teacher for those weeks. Like I told you, small town. Most things like that were acceptable.
After my mother got out of rehab, I went back to my home. In that little trailer park. I saw home. I walked in. It looked exactly the same as it had two weeks before I had left. I looked on the counter. Empty bottles of vodka were everywhere. I walked into my room, the photos were still there.
My mom saw me observing the place. She came up to me and hugged me from behind. I looked up at her and she smiled. She said “It’s gonna be okay babe. We’re in it together.” I guess I learned that considering my circumstances, everything would be okay. I was living in this tornado and I had to learn to live in it comfortably. And as we sat there for that moment embracing. My Mother and I. I realized something that hadn’t happened in awhile. My scar stopped hurting. My heart didn't scream with pain anymore. The warm embrace of a mothers arms helped heal my hurt, And for a split second everything seemed back to normal.