Oct 31
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147 Oak Street

     It had been four years since I had stood before this house. Since then, me and my parents had moved all the way across town and I had shoved down the memories of this place. The house where I was born. Where I took my first steps and spoke my first words. The house that had sheltered me for twelve years. In those four years after I left I never allowed myself to come anywhere near this house. Even if I was running late, I took a long roundabout way. I refused to even drive by it. And now I am standing in front of it again. I’m not sure what possessed me to come here at 4:28 a.m. after all this time, just a sudden urge. An irresistible feeling that was impossible to ignore as I tossed and turned in bed. Finally persuading me to grab my car keys and slip out the window.  

    To most people walking by, there is nothing out of the ordinary about this house. With its pale blue paint trimmed with white topped with a shingled roof, it fits perfectly amongst the other houses on this lane. But ever since that night this house didn’t seem quite like home to me anymore. It felt empty. Bleak and dull without her. It never went back to the way it felt before, no matter how much my parents tried. Their plastic smiles and feeble words could not change the past. Could not make us normal. But after a while I think they convinced themselves that we were. Leaving only me behind. I wrapped my arms tighter around myself trying to block out the images flooding my mind. 

     Her. Being guided by my parents to the car on wobbly legs. Driving away quickly into the night. Me. Staring at the vacant bed on the other side of the room. Her stuff still littering the floor like she never left. Her. Lying on the sterile hospital bed. An IV sticking out of her arm. Breathing ragged. Me. Feeling numb. As if I was teetering on the edge of a cliff, desperately hanging on to that tiny thread of hope. Feeling that hope slip away as my parent’s mouths moved, not registering anything but the fact that my sister would not be coming home. 

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