It was the next day and I was still at a complete loss. I had let my phone die, my laptop lay abandoned on my desk and I had been laid on my bed for what seemed to be an eternity. My thoughts were non-stop whizzing around inside my head meaning that there was no way I was getting any sleep. I couldn’t bring myself to say it, thinking it was bad enough. My head hurt, my eyes were itchy from crying so much and I just wanted a hug but I didn’t think I could even put what I was thinking into words right now.
I heard the door open and Megan’s beautiful voice drifted along the hall. I had pretended to be asleep when Megan had come in from work the previous night and again when she went to work that morning.
“Hey it’s me, I’ve been texting you Anna! You in?”
I sat up and wiped my eyes, I knew I couldn’t tell her just yet, I couldn’t even comprehend it myself so how could I face telling her.
“Hey Megan, sorry my phone died and I haven’t had chance to charge it up.
“Anna, have you done anything today?” You look like you have not long got up you lazy bitch” she said with a laugh.
I faked a laugh, “Yeah feeling lazy today.”
“Anna, I’ve just had a text from Cara saying you haven’t been replying to her, she’s asking if you are okay.” Megan said holding her phone in her hand.
“Oh shit, my phone is still dead,” I said grabbing my phone from my bedside table where it had been left abandoned. I plugged it in and after a few minutes my phone had enough power to turn itself on and the texts came flooding in. Three texts from Cara and one from Dani.
I opened up the texts from Cara,
I'm ready to talk, if you are.
I forgive you this time, but
I think we need to talk about
everything. You have to know
you can't keep doing this. Let
me know when you're free to talk. Xx
After that message was a text I has been sure that I had sent but it seemed that the signal had been too low to send it.
I am so glad to hear from you Cara, Yes I agree, we do need to talk about everything and I am really sorry for what I did. I have been really busy which is why I haven’t had chance to text you until now but I will Skype you when I can. Xx
My phone had died shortly after this and the following messages were just Cara wondering why she hadn’t heard back from me.
Anna? Are you okay I haven’t heard anything back from you Xx
I then opened the text I had received from Dani,
Hey girl, didn’t mean to interfere before. I hope we are cool. D xx
I felt bad for snapping at Dani now and quickly tapped out a reply to her.
Hey Dani, sorry for snapping, I appreciate that you were trying to help. Hope you are okay, see you soon. A xx
I looked up to find Megan still standing there,
“Are you okay?” she asked tentatively, something strange is going on I can tell, you never let your phone die!”
“I’m okay Megan,” I said pulling her into a hug. The reason I like hugs is that you can hide how you truly feel. I was not okay but I didn’t want to tell Megan that as I didn’t want to worry her. I pulled out of the hug and put on my biggest fake smile,
“I promise, I am fine. Now I should really go and skype Cara”
“Okay, love you” She said giving me a kiss and leaving the room.
I turned on my laptop and loaded up skype, Cara was online. I hesitated for a moment and then pressed the call button, I didn’t want her to see that I was upset but I knew that the longer she didn’t hear from me, the more worried she would become.
The phone rang and rang and rang until Cara picked up. Her camera took a moment to load but when I saw her face, I couldn’t help but smile.
“Hey Cara, sorry I didn’t get back to you. How are you?”
“I'm good, how are you,”
“Yeah I'm doing okay.... um... I'm sorry for everything that went down before Cara.
Was Sam mad?”
“Kind of. I mean... Not as mad as me.”
“Are you still mad?” I asked tentatively “....well stupid question, if you were you wouldn’t be talking to me but have you calmed down? I am sorry!”
“'Calmed down'? Anna... It wasn't really about me needing to calm down. It was about you getting a consequence for your actions. I'm not mad at you. I just want you to think before you act next time” She paused for a moment before carrying on, “…And if those thoughts lead you to do the opposite of what I've said you should think that they're wrong”
“Okay I understand. I am sorry Cara, I really am. I've missed you!
“I missed you too. Anything new?” Cara replied, obviously trying to steer the conversation in a different direction”
“Umm...no not really,” I said, not really making eye contact with Cara,
“Oh yeah, I totally believe you”
“Just boring project work really. What about you, how are things with you and Sam?”
“Oh, you know, same.” It was Cara’s turn to avoid eye contact this time.
“Cara? I know that look. What’s been happening?” I pressed but Cara knocked me back
“Don't be a hypocrite Anna: if nothing but project work is happening with you then nothing is different between Sam and I,”
“Woah chill Cara! I’m sorry. I wasn’t trying to be a hypocrite,” I said with a heavy sigh, “I just didn’t realise when I went away how much I would miss back home,”
“You've already managed three months. The next ones will fly by,” Cara said
“Yeah sure they will,” I replied sarcastically, tears pricking my eyes again. I looked downwards so that Cara couldn’t see my eyes.”
I could feel Cara frowning at me, “is there anything else?
“Something has happened Cara, something awful.” I admitted, allowing the tears that had filled my vision to splash onto my cheeks.
“What? What happened Anna? Are you okay?”
“It’s mum ... she’s got ...... she’s....I can’t say it
“Your mum? You're speaking? What happened to her?”
“Yeah she skyped and we resolved things. She’s dying Cara. She’s got breast cancer”
“What??? Oh my god, can't they do anything?”
“No,” I said, shaking my head, “…its terminal. It’s stage four. Primarily in her breasts but some in her lungs too”
“Oh god Anna I'm so sorry. How'd did it get so bad?? I mean surely she should have noticed something?”
“She’s stubborn and doesn’t like doctors and she only went when my dad forced her to go
She had some swelling, some discharge from the nipple but she thought she was just hitting the menopause or something like that. It was only when she found the lump that she agreed to go and get checked out. Dad had been saying that she had been losing weight for ages. Must have been the start of it...”