I’ve always wondered what makes a person go mad. Now I know the answer and I wish to God I didn’t. After watching my momma drink her life away every night after my daddy left us, I told myself that could never happen to me. If I only knew one day I would eat those words. So what makes a person go insane; love does or rather the loss of love. At only eighteen years old, the loss of my first love turned me into a mad woman.
“We’re done.” That voice once so loving and full of warmth now sounded cruel and cold. No explanation just those heart-wrenching words.
My response stuck as thick sobs clogged my throat. My mind tried to comprehend what his words meant. We’re done. As in we’re over? It was only supposed to be a break. He said by Monday everything would be back to normal. We would be back to normal.
“Is there someone else?”
“No. But if there were I wouldn’t tell you.” Again that cruel, cold voice answered me. What am I supposed to think? Of course there’s another girl. That must be the reason the perfect couple that was us is now pieces in the form of my heart scattered on the floor.
“We can still be friends.” Friends? We were passion. We were soul mates. We were a freaking love story that would go down in the history books and now we were—friends?
“Okay. Sure. We’re friends.”
Two hours later I’m chugging my first bottle of Malibu, desperately trying to forget him for just a few hours. I knew better than to drown my sorrows in alcohol, but at that moment I didn’t care. I stole the bottle from mom’s secret stash in her closet. Using an empty shoebox to hide your liquor isn’t very creative. I felt like I needed to teach her that lesson. As I continued to drink my vision blurred and the room spun around me, but his face still haunted me. How do you just forget about someone who’s been a part of your life for the past three years? You don’t. That would be like losing an arm and pretending you didn’t feel the missing appendage. It was a part of you. You don’t get over losing a part of yourself in a day. It takes time and therapy; in my case self-medicating with the rum bottle until I passed out.
I woke the next morning with someone grabbing onto my shirt collar and violently shaking me.
“Lexi wake up!” I opened my eyes to see my mother’s face in mine. When she noticed my eyes opened, she stepped back and picked something up off the floor. “Did you drink some of my liquor last night?” She held the empty Malibu bottle in her hand.
My head pounded and the sun silhouetting her in light hurt my eyes. “If you didn’t want me to drink any of your alcohol then maybe you should hide it better.”
“Don’t get smart with me. I outta whip your butt for stealing from me.”
“Lay a hand on me and see how long I stick around to take care of you,” I threatened. Momma was hopeless without me and she knew it.
“Get up and go replace the bottle you stole from me.”
I chuckled as I covered my eyes with my hand. “I’m underage. No one is going to sell alcohol to me.”
“You should have thought of that when you decided to steal from me.”
Sitting up I took in momma’s appearance. Her dark hair hung in strands around her face. Her blue eye shadow smudged around her puffy eyes. Her black slip dress had some kind of white stain on the hemline. No wonder she just now came into my room, she was out all night at the bar.
“Tell you what momma, when you stop spending our bill money at the bar then I will replace your alcohol.” Momma stared at me in surprise for a moment then she waved her hands at me as if I wasn’t worth the argument as she walked away. I listened to her footsteps until I heard her bedroom door close. After drinking a couple more beers, she would sleep the rest of the day.
It took me a moment to remember why my insides felt like they were scooped out with a spoon. For the first time I could sympathize with how momma felt when daddy left. I’m surprised she didn’t laugh in my face and joke about me no longer being perfect. For all the lectures I ever gave her about drinking; I turned into a hypocrite overnight, but I didn’t care. Hollow, empty, and numb; that’s all I felt.