Story of a young girl in a broken home.
It all started with a wish on my twelfth birthday. The wish to see when people were lying to me, misleading me.... the wish to see people for who they were. You see I've had a lot of time to plan my wish on this special day, Mommy being an alcoholic and daddy still on a business trip that he hasn't returned from twelve years ago from today. Today is my birthday, but no party, only me and my mother, along with her good ole friend Jack Daniel. Mother said I wouldn't get anything this year, like every year, so she can buy more booze, but she won't admit it. And so I begged her and took a few beatings, but I got what I wanted. What I needed. A small cake with a single candle, for my wish. Part of me knew wishes were for children. But it still didn't hurt to try.
I blew out the single candle and wished for the truth, to see people for what they really are, to see through a person to know if they were lying to me. Part of me knew I should have wish for mother to stop beating me, or maybe for more food in my belly and less rum for mommy. But I wished for all those things before, all these years and nothing came true, so what's to say that this will. It's nothing but silly faith that someone might be listening to my dire wish.
As soon as the candle's life is dissipated and turned into smoke the smell of sulfur flood's my nostrils. The smell was strong; it was coming from my left. I turn my head and looked at my mother. Dark circles under her eyes, wrinkles on her brow, pale scared skin. She should look younger then she is, but all the years of drugs and alcohol has robbed her.
She's standing motionless next to me with a bottle of jack in one hand, death gripped tightly as if she is defending it from the world that wishes nothing more than to rob her from her buzz.
"Mija!” I hear a yell coming from the kitchen, "Come in here I got something for you," the voice is unclear.
I walk to the kitchen still wondering where the smell of sulfur was coming from. As I walk into the kitchen the smell of sulfur leaves the air and in its place a feeling a love is present.
The first thing I notice when I walk into the room is a box with a few holes all around it and a red bow on top. Standing next to the box is my grandfather Vicente with a huge grin on his face, showing off his golden tooth.
"Go ahead what are you waiting for Mija open it" says grandpa.
I walk over to the box nervous yet excited, I gently lift up the lid and a puppy jumps out! Shocked I catch it in mid air, only to have my face attacked by a barrage of licking. A laugh escapes my lips for the first time in what feels like eternity. Though the laugh might have felt good, Mother doesn't like it. She comes rushing into the kitchen drunk, stumbling over everything in her path. The smell of sulfur fills the room.
"What the hell is going on in here?" She questions us.
"Oh.I, uh, Grandpa got me a pup" I reply, fear in my words.
"Shut the hell up child!" She yells “Or I'll give your ass another beating."
I quickly do as she tells me. I should have known better then to reply to her. Now I might not get my frozen dinner tonight...
My mother raises her hand to hit me when my new friendly puppy suddenly starts to bark nonstop, making her even more frustrated. She throws a newspaper at the pup, but he continues to bark and hold his ground. He already has more courage than I have ever had.
Angry, she storms out of the kitchen and into her room, slamming her door where she will undoubtedly drink more before passing out on her bed. I can only hope she doesn't fall asleep on her side tonight.