The Good Days

May 15, 2012
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Four years ago, the soundtrack for falling asleep was the finely tuned music box my father had bought me in Germany. Now, that soundtrack is my parents arguing nonstop about how much they despise each other and everything the other did wrong. Four years ago, 7 o’clock sharp every night meant family dinner; my mom made delectable food and my dad always wore a huge grin as she served it for us. Now, no one ever has a smile on their face and we never eat as a family. Four years ago, both my mother and my father were there supporting me at every one of my baseball games. Now, I can scarcely get one of them to drive me to practice. Four years ago, we went to church every Sunday; not only did we go, but we all went together and loved it as much as we loved each other. Now, I don’t even know if we’ll go for Easter. If we do, it’ll be in separate pews, or even separate services. Four years ago, when Daddy got home from work, the first order of business was to tell my mother he loved her and to kiss her on the cheek. Now, he doesn’t even utter hello to her. Four years ago, I got tucked in every night by mom and dad. Now, if one of them even mutters “goodnight” as I walk up the stairs to bed, it’s a good day.

Good days. That’s what I have to try hard to keep in my memory. Because the good days have been discarded, thrown away, rotting memories that will never come back. Every day is a bad day. Filled with loneliness and that feeling of not being whole. My future dims as my once unshakable faith is trashed and the hope for my family is thrown away all together. No caring. No empathy—from either of them. They’ve already torn each other apart, and their wounds break me as well. Hate shadows their desire to even listen to the other’s unborn replies. A minute never passes without me thinking about how my life is crumbling around me. I’m trapped in a tunnel with people pulling me both ways, and I’m stuck in the middle. This hatred they advocate to me will never end; it’s going to affect me the rest of my life. Who are they to tell me what values are, and what I should do. They’ve shattered every bit of humanity in them, and they expect me to grow up and have what they never gave me. Love. The thing that once united them is completely lost from their lives. One day, they’ll realize what they’ve done to me, after the day that they get over what they’ve done to themselves.

I don’t know what’s happened in these past four years, but one thing I do know is that now, I’ll never get to go back to the good days.

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ArianaKnight This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Jul. 31, 2012 at 1:18 am
I liked this piece mainly because it captures the feelings of regret that things will never be the same and the hope that they can get better. The wording got me angry at the parents and I guess that's how it's supposed to be. :) Great job with this story.
youreamazing said...
Jul. 30, 2012 at 4:57 pm
Every comment on here so far has been so true. Your writing is phenomenal and I look forward to reading the rest of your stories. You have such a talent for putting so much emotion into so few words. I hope you pursue your talent and continuing affecting people's hearts like mine. :)
qvamath said...
May 30, 2012 at 6:19 pm


Your story was very poignant, and I am sure you captured the angst that many kids feel.

You know you touched the old man's heart just a bit. I read it a while ago, but it is staying with me. Thank you.

Your friend,

Mr. S.

akstory replied...
Jul. 30, 2012 at 5:02 pm
I'm really glad my story affected you in the way it did, that makes me feel great. Thanks so much for everything! 
CCH2 said...
May 30, 2012 at 12:33 pm
Very good message for adults, both parents and teachers.  A good reminder of what kids are going through.  If the love does fade than at least have it in you to keep the ugliness away from the children.  Be the bigger person, put the personal pride aside, and do everything you can to be amicable to one another because the kids deserve more.
akstory replied...
Jul. 30, 2012 at 5:01 pm
Thanks so much for the comment! It means a lot :)
JB Teach said...
May 30, 2012 at 11:50 am
The repetition of "Four years ago" is my favorite thing about this piece. It builds the mood and creates the juxtaposition of present to past. I felt something inside as I read that portion in particular. The middle section starts with an interesting transtion with the fragement "Good days." From there, the outlook is bleek. Some of the wording in the 2nd and 3rd paragraph lacks the clarity of meaning you were trying to achieve. It's almost too "wordy" in just a few places. In future revisions y... (more »)
akstory replied...
Jul. 30, 2012 at 5:00 pm
Thanks for the tips/ideas. :) I'll definitely consider them if I ever do another version. 
SeaMonc02 said...
May 30, 2012 at 10:47 am
It was a great story…but this sentence doesn’t flow…”Because the good days have been discarded, thrown away, rotting memories that will never come back.”  Should she say maybe, “…all that remains are the rotting memories of those good days.” ?
akstory replied...
Jul. 30, 2012 at 4:29 pm
I understand your point, and one day I might change it. But the person who suggested a line like that to me (my teacher) i think was going for a choppy sentence that's main purpose was to have a metaphor dealing with garbage and trash. Thanks for the comment though. :)
AMcFarland said...
May 30, 2012 at 10:39 am
Great story!  If I didn't know you better, I would think that you were writing about your own experience!  First paragraph is very effective and grabs the reader quickly.  Last paragraph gets a bit repetitive, but is still effective.  Love the ending. 
akstory replied...
Jul. 30, 2012 at 4:26 pm
I'm so glad you liked it! :) Thanks for the comment.
Perspective said...
May 30, 2012 at 8:08 am
I love the way you use imagery in the story and how you develop the emotion through it. Your sentences are controlled so well and leave a powerful impact on the reader about the emotions surrounding the life-changing event of divorce.
akstory replied...
Jul. 30, 2012 at 4:24 pm
Thanks for the great comment about the writing and the message! Means a lot :)
Iwillnotspeakwithher said...
May 24, 2012 at 9:26 pm
Hey! This story is amazing. You have so much depth and are completely in tune with the feelings this child is going through. Keep up the great writing. :D
akstory replied...
Jul. 30, 2012 at 4:24 pm
Thank you :)
supergenius said...
May 24, 2012 at 7:02 pm
Wow! What a great piece! Her writing truly shows the affects of divorce on an average kids' life. Great job!
akstory replied...
Jul. 30, 2012 at 4:23 pm
Thank you so much! It means a lot :) 
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