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Michael, Age 14 Part II

September 19, 2012

The alarm clock woke me up. I didn’t want to get out of bed, but the shrieking of my new alarm clock wouldn’t let me stay there. This was the first time I had ever used an alarm clock. I never needed to before. Mom would always get me up in time to get ready for school. And since this was the first day of school after nearly three months of sleeping as late as I wanted, it made the change even more drastic. Even worse, this was the first day of high school.
Why do things have to change? I had finally made my way to the top of the heap in 8th grade, only to start at the bottom of the heap again in 9th grade.
This was the worst possible time for mom and dad to get divorced. I was at a point where I felt everything was going okay. I did alright in 8th grade and played varsity football and baseball. I was excited, but also a little scared to play both in high school. I’m pretty big and strong for my age, but I would be playing with bigger, stronger high school kids.
Then, summer came, and Mom moved out. I felt like I was standing on solid concrete that all of a sudden turned into quicksand. I wasn’t sure of anything anymore.
My dad got custody of me. It’s not so bad. He’s a personal trainer so I get to work out with him. He’s a very big, muscular guy so he stresses the importance of keeping fit. He also stresses doing well in school so I can keep playing baseball and football. The only problem is that I kind of miss my mom. Dad’s new girlfriend is okay but if they get married I will have four new brothers and sisters overnight! It’s always been just me.
After sleepily getting dressed I slowly made my way down the stairs of our new house and into the kitchen where my dad was already gulping down scrambled eggs, sausage, bacon, wheat toast and orange juice. He looked up at me as I limply plodded down the stairs.
“I wasn’t sure if you would want any breakfast but I made you some, just in case”, he said.
“I don’t like sausage,” I replied.
He didn’t believe me and asked, “Since when?”
“Since always. Mom likes sausage. I don’t.”
“I’m sorry. I forgot.”
I looked at him, and while holding back tears I said, “It’s okay”.
There was an awkward silence, with the exception of my heart pounding in my ears. I ended it by scooping the eggs and bacon onto my plate. The fork scraped against the cast iron pan. I sat down to eat and there was more silence.
My dad broke the silence with disappointing news, “Well, I’ve got to get to the gym. You’re cool with riding the bus, right?” I was not cool with riding the bus so I angrily let him know it, “The bus? Mom used to drive me to school!”
“Well, I can’t do that. I’m already running late. I have a client waiting for me at the gym right now.”
“Fine! I’ll ride the stupid bus!” I shot back, even louder than my previous statement.
My father turned red with anger. I didn’t know he had a vein that large in his forehead until that moment. Once the moment passed, his natural color came back and he looked a little hurt. I didn’t care. I didn’t want to ride the stupid bus with all of those other kids I didn’t know.
He turned to walk out the door, but as he did, he stopped in the doorway, and without turning around, he choked and under his breath said, “I’m trying, Mike”. Then he walked out, slowly closing the door behind him.
It was then that I realized that the divorce, the new girlfriend, new house, everything, isn‘t just hard on me. It also affects my dad: this big, hulking man, made of muscle. He needs me to help him through everything as much as I need him to help me. He made it through high school years ago, just like I have to, and he turned out okay, but he still needs help sometimes too. There will always be change and it won’t be easy. I will have to deal with that, but at least I won’t have to deal with it alone.


From → Short stories

  1. izzie permalink

    i want more of this story

  2. izzie permalink

    yup let do this 😛

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