Mom: It was a relapse...that's all. We'll be okay. Love you, goodnight.
Leighton closed her eyes tightly as the tears stain her sorrowful eyes. Gulping down what felt like her last breath, she got up quietly from her bunk. Rummaging quietly through her drawer in search of something quick to put on, her hands felt the soft material of sweatpants that she hurriedly slipped on. Tossing a sweater over her head, she slid both arms into the sleeves and jumped into a pair of clogs. Seizing her phone from atop of her ruffled bed spread, she then sauntered towards the door...
These were painful moments...to live a life full of lies and deceit and dishonor. Not knowing where darkness ends, but continuing on day-by-day, in hopes that at some point there will be a light at the end of the tunnel. And there was once upon a time. Before drugs existed, before the pain became so profound that it devoured her completely...there was a light. And the light was her guide. Within that light all of her dreams lived and despair had no existence. She was small then, hardly able to differentiate between good and bad. She had no idea the needle in his arm was drugs... he told her it was medicine...that he needed it. She had no idea he had overdosed and passed out in that old, beat up trailer...she thought he'd fallen asleep. So young and so vulnerable that she believed even the smallest and most obvious of lies. She had played the fool one too many times. A relapse, sure, she'd heard that one before. Tomorrow it'd be alcohol, the next day he'll "make a run". Poor mother, she thought. Poor her.
Traveling through the night, Leighton passed by night walkers around campus aimlessly. It was a little passed midnight and no one was hardly out. The street lights were on and only few cars passed by. Normal people were asleep. People who had a life worth something were somewhere, doing something and it didn't include walking the streets late at night fighting back tears.. tears of anger, tears of hate. Resentment.
With no real destination in mind, Leighton continued walking, allowing her feet to guide her in whichever direction. It was late and only God knows who was out at this time of night. She'd no idea of what danger lies ahead and neither did she care. Her thoughts were so focused on the images in her head...of her father sitting in the front of his truck seizing, dying. She could see herself standing in the street watching him lose grip, his life passing away with no remorse. It reminded her of what peace felt like. Her legs kept moving, strolling about the grounds miserably until they stopped. Standing before the gates of some old park located a few blocks away from the school, she studied the area cautiously. Not a soul to be found. She entered and walked across the wide area of grass until she reached the bleachers. She counted in her head the steps as she jogged slowly up the bleachers until she reached the top. And there she laid down across the top bench, eyes glistening under the nights sky.
Perfectly numb, she had not realized the tears that slipped from the slits of her eyes. They trickle slowly down the sides of her face, passed her ear. She didn't wipe them away...not immediately. She counted the stars...she counted them until she felt modest enough to get on her knees and pray. Pray to a God she wanted to believe existed...it were as if he'd missed her cries. She thought maybe if she prayed harder, prayed longer that a miracle would happen. And by the time she'd finished there were no more tears to cry and her knees had become sore from being bent on the solid ground. Reclaiming her position on the bench, she laid there with her hands resting atop of her stomach, one hand over the other. For a second she counted the stars, but eventually her eyes had closed.
Startled out of her sleep, she awoke to see the nights sky. It had to be around two or three in the morning she assumed...and then she wondered how she got here. Blinking her eyes a few times, she slowly sat up, eyes darting at the figure who'd accompanied her. "What time is it?"