MY shift keys still do not work and because I really do not want to capitalize everything with the cap lock and avoid questions here is a collin and jade chapter.
Chapter 6 Collin
I’m walking home with Brandon and Chris; I have nothing to tell them so I am just listening to their conversation. But my mind is busy and so I am not even being a very good listener. Brandon is discussing a plan for Halloween this year but I really could not care less. I was planning to be a nerd for the school day and then be a chick for the night. That’s what I did last year and it was pretty funny. I painted my nails pink stuffed one of my mom’s bras with oranges and borrowed an old outfit of hers. I looked like a slutty drag queen and I had a good night going door to door collecting candy with Brandon and Chris.
I live only a block and a half away from school so I can see my house already. If I wanted to I could go home for lunch but I try not to. If my mom sees me she will smother me and that would take far too much time out of my lunch hour. I live in a newly renovated home in Tariffville Village, Simsbury, Connecticut. It is the same size as most of my neighbors in our cookie cutter condos, but don’t get me wrong it is a very nice house. We painted it a light brown last fall with white shutters. There are solar panels on the gray slanted roof and a full two car parking garage. It was interiorly redone but the outside is as generic as everyone else but what’s on the inside is what really matters. We have one and a half bathrooms that have beautiful mosaic tiles that fit together into flowers. I got to choose what color to paint my room and I decided to make it two toned it’s a light blue on the two walls that are seen when you look into the room while passing it in the hallway but then dark blue on the other two sides. I set up the constellations on the celling which is white. I love that the stars glow in the dark, I feel so much closer to the universe being engulfed in the light and the dark of the sky with the twinkling stars watching me while I sleep.
`“See you guys tomorrow.” I don’t even listen to hear if I was intruding on one of them talking. I am in my own world as I cut across the yard and mindlessly pull my key from my backpack. I unlock the white door in a smooth motion and shout out. “Hey mom, I’m home.”
“I am in the kitchen baby, come give your mama a hug and a kiss.” I can’t see her from where I am in the hall but I can clearly imagine her waving her arms around spatula in hand.
“What’s for dinner?” I give her a hug and she gives me a kiss on the cheek. Mom normally does not start dinner until later. And I know she is in full on cooking mode because she has on her kiss the chef apron and the kitchen is a complete mess. My mom has always been that kind of person who insists that she finds organization under the clutter.
“I am trying something new, it’s a surprise though, and I hope you have an appetite. It should be good. I have spent most of the day looking up recipes in the computer room and working in the kitchen.”
“Mom is there a special occasion I am forgetting about?” I know it’s not a birthday but there could be an anniversary and I would feel really bad for forgetting it, I only have one set of parents I should be able to remember when they got married and get them a mug or something; they do so much for me.
“Well yes darling it’s an important day for your father; he has a huge project that may determine whether or not he gets the promotion.” Mom does not work a conventional job; she actually did most of the artistic renovations on the house. She painted, and tiled for months until all of those renovations were complete. Now for lack of work she tends to the garden and is dabbling in cooking. We have a beautiful lawn and I am afraid that I will put on a few pounds as her meals become more gourmets.
“I hope he gets it then.” I say going to the cabinet to get a glass for my after school juice break.
“I am torn, it would be nice to have more money but the promotion may mean we have less time with him.” She whips the ingredients in the bowl a bit hardernow.
That is a good point I hadn’t really considered it that way. I see him rarely enough already just dinner and the weekends. So much of the time when he is around he is not really here. Mom used to tell me that it was okay because he worked very hard so I should just give him his space. But now that I am older the same thing applies yet I feel less sympathetic than before. Everyone is busy that does not mean that we can always go around demanding to be left alone. I don’t really understand what my mom saw in my dad he doesn’t seem like the type of person who she’d want to grow old with. I am an only child because my parents had a hard time having kids at all so I was somewhat of a miracle. It’s probably good for her sake that I am the only child she has to raise, if she had to balance another child she would have to lose a lot of her hobbies and those seem to be what she lives for.
“I am going to go up to my room and start chipping away at Mt. homework, call me down for this special dinner of yours.” I think about telling her about my day but decide against it because she will inevitably ask me during dinner so dad can hear the story too. That way he can feel involved in my life even though I know he’s not. I feel like my father knows nothing about me. That is the way things work out for some kids, they have a father that is financially supporting and physically around you but not there for you on a deeper level. If I talked to a shrink they would most likely tell me I have a daddy complex but I have not gone through any of that so it’s all just theories in my head.
“You have some time. Take the cranberry juice and go work, leave me to the kitchen and I will get you when it’s ready.”
“Collin dinner’s ready.”
I leave my math text book open on my desk. I will have to return to that after dinner. I had so much homework and the time to do it seems to be slipping away too quickly. I am now realizing how hungry I am so it’s good that the food is ready. I can’t tell what it is exactly but I think I smell bacon.
I get to tell mom and dad about my day even though it seems fairly uneventful compared to what dad’s day should have been like. Just as expected dad just nods occasionally with no real contributing to the conversation. If he were to listen and to know me I am not sure he would be all that supportive of my possible athletic streak. It may not be what I had planned to do but maybe I can make him proud of me for once. Or at least get him to notice that I am doing something that is beneficial to my wellbeing. Right now it feels like he can’t even see what is going on around him or hear what I am saying. The worst part is that after mom slaved over the oven all day to cook such a wonderful meal of feta cheese and bacon stuffed chicken breast (which is delicious) he does not even mention any part of it. At this point in my life I hope to have none of my father’s negative traits because he is not the kind of person I want to be.
“Mom you really out did yourself tonight I hope everyone at the table realizes that.” I semi subtly bring up that dad should be praising his wife and her cooking.
“It’s really not that hard thanks to online recipes but thank you for noticing, it means a lot Collin. I thought it would be nice to do something new, it sounds like there may be a lot of new things in store for the family.” My mom says it cryptically but I feel like it is just her way of asking if dad got the promotion.
“Betty I got the promotion if you must know but I really do not like the way you two talk about me behind my back. If I want to tell you something I will in my own sweet time, don’t push me.” Dad seems really angry. He puts down his silverware and excuses himself from the dinner table.
“May I be excused?” I stand up before getting an answer.
“Collin, please sit down.” My mother says in a very assertive tone so I do as I am told. “You should not upset your father he had a long day and just needs his space. Though I should have known better than to pry, this is not all your fault. We are both liable for his outburst. Just because he stormed off does not mean you should follow him.”
“I wasn’t going to follow him; I was going to get back to homework. I thought dinner was pretty much over.” That is about eighty percent true, there was a small part of me that considered following my dad but then common sense kicked in and I decided against it.
“In that case you may be excused, just clear your plate first.”
“Can do mom.” I scrape the small amount of leftovers into the trash and put my plate in the dishwasher. There seems to be more food than we actually would eat. I dip my head into the dining room “Mom did you have plans for the left overs?”
“No, I had to make what the recipe called for so there is an extra serving that will probably go to waste.” Her voice is shaky like she is holding back tears.
“Can I wrap it up for my lunch tomorrow?” I am just trying to be helpful and score some more than my fair share of her cooking.
Mom nods and gives takes a big breath in, I can hear the conjestion in her nose being faught against. “If you want to go right ahead but please do it quickly I would like some alone time in the kitchen.”
“Alright mom I will be out quick as a jaguar.” I don’t even care that my expression is not a real one. Mom needs her space I can tell because she communicated it to me and has a reason to be upset. It’s a good thing that she has calming hobbies because otherwise I don’t know if she would be able to stay in the marriage the way it is. I think she is going to bake something sweet. That will be a nice way to accompany my very fancy Friday lunch. Tomorrow will need to go better than today not really for my sake but for my parent’s. “The kitchen is all yours now mom.” I go up to my room for then night and do not hear either of them say a word.