I don’t know what they discussed after I went to bed that night, but they were not talking at breakfast like they normally do, you know what they’re going to do for the day, what time Dad’s coming home, stuff like that. There was nothing. We sat and ate in silence.
There was a thump down the hall. I tried not to notice it, but it sounded like something got knocked over in my parents’ room.
Mom looked at Dad, “Robbie did you hear that?”
Without changing his expression, “Maybe you need to see a shrink, too unless we’re all hearing the same thing.”
“I am not having this conversation again, Robert. We finished it last night.”
Dad got up with this plate, “You finished it last night. Amanda.”
I stopped eating when Dad said Mom’s voice. It dropped a couple of notes and was through gritted teeth. I didn’t understand it at the time. I just thought they were mad at each other.
During the few hours before going to co-op, I was doing some bookwork and listening to my mom calling people and asking them questions about how good they are at talking to and treating children. The tears carved warm trails as they rolled my cheeks, under my chin, and dripped onto my shirt. Deep down, I firmly thought she hated me. How can you love your kid and not believe them? How, after everything that’s happened can she still think I needed professional help? The thoughts in my 4-year-old mind were racing and none were good. I was trying to figure out how she could hate me so much, and why she thought I was crazy.
As we drove to the co-op, I noticed she was different. She wasn’t upset. She was different. I couldn’t explain it at the time. When you’re little you have no words for these things. I just recollect me thinking that old mommy was back, and that I wished she would stay.
At the co-op, she smiled and hugged me. I felt the love and how much she adored me. I heard her laughing with the other parents and looking sad when they would bring up my being distant toward her. She would shrug, but this time she said she was taking me to counseling to see what was wrong.
I tried my best to ignore her, but another mom walked up to me, “What’s wrong dear? I see you’re sad. You usually like coming here.”
I looked up at her and tried to turn my frown upward, “I think my mommy hates me, and I don’t know why.”
I felt my mother’s hand on my shoulder, “I don’t hate you, honey. You’re just sick and need some help.”
I stomped my foot, “I am not sick, momma. I’m not. I don’t need a sickytrist. I don’t.” The tears were rolling like a waterfall, “You just don’t believe me because you hate me!”
The other mother looked at my mom, “Sickytrist?”
My mom looked at her, “Psychiatrist. I am taking her to a shrink because she’s hearing things.”
“You know there’s a possibility that she just has an imaginary friend. All only children have those. It’s perfectly normal.”
“She says it scares her.”
“Maybe it’s a cry for attention. Kids do all kinds of things for attention, Amanda. I don’t think she’s crazy.”
My mom picked me up and was going for the door, “It’s about time we left. You’ve got your assignments for the day. There’s no need to stay.”
As she was strapping me into my booster seat is when she told me my appointment was tomorrow.
When we pulled into the driveway, we heard noises inside the house.
Standing at the front door, she looked down at me, “Do you hear that?”
“If you’re hearing things, zat mean you need a sickytrist, too?”
Mom’s lips shrunk to a thin line, “You can’t tell me you don’t hear things being thrown around in the house.”
“I’m not sayin’ nuffin’. You’ll think I’m more crazy.”
“Morgan, don’t sass me.”
I remember an immediate sting to the back of my head when I stuck out my tongue.
“I will not have you copping an attitude with me.”
“You’re showin’ me ‘tude.”
“I’m the mom.”
I huffed and crossed my arms on my chest.
I turned my head as Dad drove up and got out of the car, “What’s going on?”
I faced him, “Mom says she’s hearing stuff in the house but won’t see a sickytrist, too. She’s taking me to one tomorrow.”
Dad covered his mouth, but I could’ve sworn there was a smile under there. He straightened himself up and cleared his throat, “Well, if we all hear the things, we can’t all need a sickytrist now can we?”
That’s when Dad snatched me off the porch as something crashed through one of the panes in the front door and hit Mom in the head. She reeled backward and landed on her back in the front yard.
Dad dialed 911 while I sat next to Mom patting her cheek and demanding she wake up.
We were in the waiting room of the emergency department standing by for any information on Mom. Dad paced the floor while I sat holding my favorite stuffed pony and swinging my legs.
I can’t tell you how long we waited for any news, but Dad woke me up when he picked me off the chair and followed the doctor to where they had Mom. She was sitting up in the bed with her head wrapped in a bandage with some gauze sticking out.
“She’s sustained a moderate concussion. We are keeping her overnight for observation. How did this happen?”
“You’re not going to believe me.”
The doctor looked at him, “Try me. I work in an emergency department. There isn’t anything I haven’t heard or seen my over twenty years.”
After hefting a huge sigh, Dad told him what happened.
“Well, that’s new, but not unbelievable.”
Dad and I both looked at him confused. He smiled, “I work in a hospital. Unexplained occurrences happen here regularly.”
I looked at the doctor, “Did your mommy think you were crazy?”
Amanda, “Morgan, don’t you start.”
The doctor smiled, “I am a little too old to have my mommy around, but I am sure she wouldn’t believe me. Lots of grownups don’t believe their kids when something spooky happens.”
“Really. When a lot of people grow up, they stop believing in things.” He made his way to the door, “I’ll give you some time together.”
Mom looked at me, “You are still going to the psychiatrist tomorrow.”
My dad looked at her, “And how will that happen if you are here? You told me the appointment was for tomorrow morning. I need the information to call and cancel before they charge a fee for not showing up.”
“You’re taking her.”
Dad walked me outside and told me to sit in the chair next to the door before going back inside. I have no idea what was said, but when he came back out, he was livid as he took my hand and we went home.
A note from me…
There may be breaks from time to time. I am working through an untenable situation at home with my parent. My husband and I are planning on being out of her house by the of the month for a least a month as we save money to find another place.
It is clear we cannot afford to live in Minnesota, and I have been having a difficult time finding and keeping clients let alone a job outside the home.
I know I have ads on this blog, but the revenue isn’t enough to cash out as it is less than a dollar, and neither of my Youtube channels is monetized as they aren’t big enough to submit for that at this time.
I appreciate all of you who read my posts as I upload them. Thank you.
Anissa “Maddy” Walker