The Tale of Two Sisters: Part One
A series about the adventures of two sisters.
It began on a warm summer morning, the breeze blowing through our living room window cooled the dark cavern we tried to keep below 90 degrees. Mom was nine months pregnant with my sister and I was so in love with her. I spent every moment I could with my little head pressed against mom’s bulging belly, listening to my sister swish and swirl. Her feet pushed again my tiny ear and cheek as she grew too big for her surroundings. Even though my mom was visibly uncomfortable, she never told me to leave. She would brush my long brunette curls with her fingers gently down my back as I laid there.
When that morning came, Dad was headed to work. I sat with mom sweating in the morning heat, ear pressed against her belly like usual. As I told daddy goodbye and watched him close the door, Mom sat up suddenly causing me to fall off the couch.
“Ouch Mommy! What did you do that for?” I said, as I rubbed my elbow. She looked into my deep brown eyes and said, “Go get Daddy Amanda, hurry, go! Before he leaves!” Her eyes looked a little wild and her breath started to come in little pants.
I ran like the wind, yelling for daddy to come back. Running on the hot Vegas sidewalks to the parking lot of our apartment complex. “Daddy wait! Daddy wait!” I yelled. “Mommy needs you daddy! Come back Daddy!”
My dad came around the corner of our apartment’s garage, “What’s wrong Amanda?” As he caught me in his arms.
“Mommy needs you!” I cried. I was scared and confused. Mommy never looked like that and she never let me fall off the couch before. And she never told me to stop daddy from going to work.
Quickly, he walked back to our small apartment and walked through our brown front door. “What’s wrong honey?” He asked her. She sat on the edge of our worn red couch, eyes wide, breath panting. Now, though, something was different. Now, the shorts she wore were drenched with fluids. It looked like mommy peed her pants! What a silly mommy!
Mommy looked right at my daddy and said “It’s time Joe, we need to go now.” My four year old brain couldn’t comprehend all that was going on. All I knew was something was wrong, and who was Joe? Within moments I was down on the floor, daddy stepped over to mommy to help her stand up, and I got a stern, “Amanda go grab your shoes” from daddy.
I ran as fast as I could to my bedroom and grabbed my favorite white sandals that I had just learned to put on myself! As I was there in my bedroom I decided to grab a few toys. Daddy didn’t say to, but I wanted my Barbie dolls. I still didn’t understand but I didn’t want to cry, I didn’t want to make mommy more upset. I could hear daddy shuffling around the house yelling questions at mommy, mommy yelling back with “I don’t know Joe, but we need to go, NOW.”
Daddy stopped by my room, he large head peeked in. “Look daddy! All by myself!” I held both feet in the air for him to see my sandals. “Good job honeybee,” he smiled, “but we need to go. Are you ready to meet your baby sister?” He asked.
I sat there for a moment stunned. What did he mean, “meet my baby sister”? She was in mommy’s belly. I had already met her. She was supposed to stay there, right? With a perplexed look on my face I looked up at my daddy, “No.”
He just laughed and said that I better change my mind soon, because I had no choice in the matter. And he scooped me up in his arms and said “I have to take mommy to the hospital. You are going to see Grandma Gene for a few hours okay? You’ll need to be a good girl. And if you are good, you will get to meet someone very special.”
The thought of getting to meet someone special made my heart skip. “I get to meet Santa!?” I wiggled in his arms. All daddy did was laugh. I hated going to Grandma Gene’s house. It always smelled bad, like smoke. Plus she never had food there, just old crackers that made my mouth dry. Normally, I would kick and scream, refusing to go until mommy placated me with hugs and kisses and promises of not being long. But today there were no kisses and no hugs. And no promises of a quick return. Just the promise of getting to meet someone special. I wonder who that could be?
Mommy sat in the living room with new dry shorts on, her face contorted in pain. I didn’t like that mommy was hurting. I wanted to hug her but daddy kept me in his arms. He grabbed two black duffel bags and said he was ready. I watched mommy as she scooted and leaned her body this way and that way. Finally pushing slowly off the couch to start waddling towards the door.
We walked slowly together towards the car, daddy holding me and waiting patiently for mommy to waddle her way to the car. He put me in first, the plastic of my car seat hot against my skin. “Daddy, it’s hot.” I whined. “I know honeybee, we will cool it down in just a moment.” He patted my head and slammed the car door.
Mommy’s door opened and I could hear her moans as she pushed her way into the car. “Oh God.” She cried. “Hurry Joe, we need to hurry.” I still didn’t know who this Joe guy was, but soon Daddy was in his seat and starting the car.
We zoomed faster than ever before in our little red car. I could feel my stomach do little flips every time we hit a bump. Within minutes, Grandma Gene’s house was in view. I started crying because I didn’t want to leave mommy, she was hurting and I didn’t know why. Mommy reached her hand back and squeezed my small knee. “It’s okay honeybee, Mommy is okay. We will back soon to get you, I promise.” She turned to look at me with eyes like mine, deep brown and full of love. “Okay mommy, I’ll go.” I sniffed.
Daddy had parked and was pulling me out of my car seat. He grabbed one of the black duffel bags and my toys. Holding my hand, he walked me to Grandma Gene’s front door, gravel crunching under my white sandals. I could already smell the cigarette smoke from outside, dreading having to stay there for any reason.
She opened the door before we got there, like she knew we were right outside. “Hi baby!” She yelped as daddy and I walked up the stairs hand-in-hand. “Hi Grandma.” I moped.
Daddy handed her the bag and my toys, he leaned down and whispered in my ear, “You be a good girl for Grandma, you hear me?” I nodded sullenly. “Good girl. I’ll be back soon to get you.” And off daddy was, leaving me behind. I waved on the front steps as I watched daddy reverse down the driveway and peel off into the busy street.
Grandma Gene grabbed my shoulder and said “Come on in now baby, it’s too hot out here. We aren’t paying to cool the outside now.” Slowly I turned into the dark hole that was grandma’s house, wishing I were with mommy...